I beleieveeeveve I’m going to talk about a shot that isn’t super well-known, but has once fierce fanbase. In the not too distant future, two men from Minnesota decided that they had a great idea to pay back all of the bad movies they were forced to sit through.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 premiered on a local KTMA channel on Thanksgiving in the late eighties and it was so popular that ,after the first season, it was picked up by the precursor to Comedy Central.
The show is sort of a horror-host/feature film format. It is about Joel Robinson (later Mike Nelson) who was shot into space by some mad scientists to experiment on him. They would force him to watch bad movies. Instead of having control of the movies, he used those special pars to make his robot friends. Tom Servo, Crow T. Robot, Gypsy, Cambot and Magic Voice all helped Joel survive on the Satellite of Love. The mad scientists forced him and two of the bots to watch a terrible movie. In return, they would talk back to the movie or “riff” it.
The show became a cult hit and loved the idea of people taping the show and showing their friends the tapes. My Mom has many of the episodes on tapes that she recorded herself. I grew up watching the show and I learned that a sharp wit will take me further in a conversation than an angry word ever could.
So, the residents of the Satellite of Love rose in the ranks of horror hosts and still sit with alumni such as Zacherly, Elvira, and Svengoolie.
The show still thrives to this day, a recent Kickstarter has guaranteed that the show will come back in it’s classic format for at least six episodes. Also, for the past ten years, some members of the show have been running the website Rifftrax which has hundreds of movies and short films being riffed by some of the masters.
Now, I’m past the halfway point of these shows. After I finish up on Kolchak: The Night Stalker and Columbo I will talk about certain radio shows that I’ve grown up with and enjoyed. Next up, Darren McGavin in a seersucker suit!!