Thursday, November 30, 2017

Childhood Memories: Mystery Science Theater 3000

I was lucky, I guess you could say, to have had so many things available to me, even being a poor kid, in the early-to-mid 90s, that helped put some fun and passion and excitement into an otherwise pretty lonely, difficult, and sometimes painful childhood and pre-adolecence. Things including but not limited to: The X-Men Animated Series, the Monster In My Pocket figures, the DiC Mario and Captain N cartoons, RL Stine's Goosebumps book series, Nickelodeon's Are You Afraid of the Dark? show, my obsession with old Godzilla movies, TNT's MonsterVision marathons, and of course my love affair with the greatest game console ever made, the Nintendo Entertainment System.

But amidst all of those other things, I would be remiss if I didn't talk about what would eventually become more or less my favorite non-animated TV show of all time: Mystery Science Theater 3000.

Season Zero, the KTMA days.

First seeing its debut on the local Minneapolis, Minnesota TV channel KTMA, on November 24th 1988, MST3K was a show not quite like anything that had been done before. The brainchild of Joel Hodgson, a local comedian with a proclivity for sight gag and prop-driven comedy, the show was centered around his love for weird prop creations and his quirky brand of humor. The show first aired on Thanksgiving Day, a holiday it would become deeply connected to with "Turkey Day Marathons" in future years. That first KTMA season was something of a prototype, done on a shoestring budget, where Joel and his partners really seemed to basically "make it up as they went along", and the show's style and personality evolved and formulated as "Season Zero" went on. The popular "stars" of the show, Joel's robot companions Crow T. Robot, Tom Servo, and Gypsy (and poor ignored Cambot), gradually came into existence, with evolving early forms, that would eventually take the shape fans would become most familiar with.

That first experimental season proved popular enough on a local level, that when the brand new cable channel "The Comedy Channel" (later renamed Comedy Central) started in 1989, they made it their first flagship show. Thus bringing MST3K to a national, and eventually world-wide audience. And the rest, as the saying goes, is history.

Joel and his Bots.

The general premise, of course, for those unfamiliar, is a show set "in the not too distant future", where a couple of mad scientists, Dr. Clayton Forrester, and his assistant (and often forgotten series original) Dr. Laurence Erhardt, work at a research facility called "Gizmonic Institute". From their private underground lab named "Deep 13", they conduct all manner of probably illegal experiments, wherein one of the most diabolical of which, they use poor unsuspecting janitor Joel Robinson as a guinea pig. Stranding him, alone, in the orbital space ship/station known as the "Satellite of Love", they set about trying to test the depths of human sanity and endurance, by making him watch "bad" movies every day.

Being something of an amateur inventor, Joel uses many (as it would later turn out) integral components from the ship itself, to build robot companions to keep him company. These robots, Crow and Servo, are seemingly sentient, wise-cracking jokesters, who view Joel as a father figure, and sit with him during the movies he's forced to watch, helping him "riff" them to keep his sanity. It is said that he also built Cambot, the reason we the audience can see Joel, and Gypsy, the robot responsible for all basic system operations of the ship itself. The catch, of course, being that the parts he used to build these bots, turn out to be some of the parts needed for him to actually control when the movies play. As a consequence, and part of the show's basic structure, Joel has zero control over this, and must go watch them when they play, period.

The most famous lineup of MST3K.

Now, I am fairly certain that I myself, as a kid, didn't stumble across MST3K until at least its third season, by which time J. Elvis Weinstein, the actor who had played Dr. Erhardt, had left the show, being replaced by the popular punching bag for Dr. Forrester, "TV's Frank". As I've explained in previous articles, it was in (probably summer) 1991 that we moved down the street, from a smaller mobile home into a larger mobile home. And along with getting my own room finally, came getting my own little TV as well, giving me the freedom to (while making sure I didn't get caught watching things I "wasn't supposed to") watch whatever the hell I wanted. And with this newfound television freedom, came my discovery of shows like the X-Men cartoon, and MST3K. Which would just so happen to become two of my favorite shows, ever.

It was due mainly to MST3K, as well as TNT's MonsterVision, that I was able to see and love so many classic (and not so classic) monster movies, science fiction and horror, etc. That was probably the single biggest appeal to me about the show, was that they frequently showed old 50s and 60s monster movies, but more than that, it was really the "perfect storm" for 10 or so year old me. For one thing, having grown up with Sesame Street, The Muppet Show, the Muppet movies, Fraggle Rock, etc., the fact that the show had robot puppets was instant attraction. I came to love the show, and the bots, so much in fact, that I actually daydreamed about building my OWN robo-pals (partly fueled by the fact that my closest friend now lived a town away from me), specifically Crow. To this day Crow is my favorite of Joel's robots, most specifically the Trace Beaulieu voiced Crow (the same actor who played Dr. Forrester). But overall, you take puppets, invention gags, funny skits, snarky "riffing" of movies, AND old monster movies? And you've basically got a recipe for a show that young Jesse was destined to love.

The Immortal Gamera.

How can you NOT love this monster?

What you see above is the movie Gamera vs. Guiron, which is quite probably the first MST3K episode I maybe ever saw, as well as definitely being the first Gamera movie I ever saw. I had never even heard of Gamera before this show introduced me, and while on the one hand I'm sure part of kid-me was like "This turtle guy is nothing compared to Godzilla", on the OTHER hand, kid-me was probably also like "Sweet, more giant monsters!" The timing probably lines up, as we must've moved in Summer 91, and this episode aired on September 7th 1991. It is entirely possible that I may have discovered the show via a previous episode before this in August, but seeing Gamera for the first time is the memory that sticks with me the most.

For those who don't know, Gamera is a gigantic snapping turtle of sorts, who much like Godzilla, was awakened from ancient slumber by stupid humans and their nuclear testing. He can breath flames (unlike Godzilla's thermonuclear radiation energy beams), and can even "turtle up" inside his shell, using his flames as rockets out of his leg-holes, to make him spin around and fly. If it sounds absolutely ridiculous, it is. But that is what is so awesome about it. Created by Toho rival studio Daiei in the 1960s, the height of the "Showa" Kaiju era, Gamera was created as a means of cashing in on that Giant Monster success that Godzilla really kicked off. While like Godzilla, he starts out as a menace to mankind, he later becomes a hero and protector of Earth, most infamously being known as a "Friend to All Children". It may actually have been Gamera's appeal to kids that led to Godzilla "softening" in the mid-to-late 60s, becoming more of a "hero" character, though it might well have been the opposite scenario, with Godzilla's transformation pushing Daiei to make Gamera a kid-friendly hero. Either way, the world got more Japanese giant monster movies, of which I honestly wish they had made MORE of in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

It's Russian Sinbad to the rescue!
And the unstoppable Hercules!

Around this time, along with Godzilla movies, I was also becoming obsessed with Greek Mythology and classic fantasy films, mainly due to Ray Harryhausen movies. And MST3K delivered some of that as well, in the form of things like cheesy Italian Hercules movies (some of which weren't actually Hercules movies), or a pretty great gem in 1962's The Magic Sword. Then of course there was the Russian film The Magic Voyage of Sinbad. While in reality a film about the Russian hero Sadko, when brought to the US it was passed off as a Sinbad movie, and while it certainly seemed a bit weird for a Sinbad movie to a kid who was becoming a connoisseur of such things, I still ate it up. And do keep in mind, that as a kid, I didn't really notice or care when things were "cheesy" or obviously super low budget, or bad acting, or badly dubbed. I took things as they were, at face value, and usually cared more about the story and the events of the movie (which I often took quite seriously), than I did about technical film issues, which I would not notice or care about for many years to come. To the same kid who found Plan 9 From Outer Space kinda scary, and its final "warning message" about war technology quite sobering, a movie like Russian Sinbad, even WITH merciless MST3K riffing, was rather fantastic.

Cheesy Robots + Martians + Santa Claus = Awesome.

Another movie that MST3K introduced me to, that I had previously no idea existed, was the obscure 60s holiday film Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. One of many movies that I'm sure gained a modern cult following due in very large part to being shown on Mystery Science Theater, this is a "science fiction" movie aimed at children, which sees the humorless jerk Martians kidnap Santa, to try and improve the crappy conditions they themselves have created on Mars, specifically with children. It's a totally cheeseball affair, but it's also very endearing and lovable, made all the more enjoyable due to Joel and Co's wisecracks. There is a scene early on, where the killer robot that the Martians try to send to grab Santa, winds up getting won over by Santa's charm and magic, only further proving what I've always known: that Santa Claus is both a badass wizard, and a wicked nice guy.

On a side note, being the obsessed "Monster Kid" that I was, I do clearly remember the few times I would tune in, and the movie they'd be riffing that week would be some kind of crime film, or western, or something NOT of the sci-fi/monster variety that I preferred, while I still found the jokes funny, I remember being disappointed. At that age, I was monster movie hungry, and had a huge appetite to see ones I hadn't seen yet, so while I enjoyed the comedy and puppets aspect of it, I was definitely there for the monsters the most. Go figure.

The Mads.

Now while the meat of the show is certainly the robots, and the movies they watch and riff, it needs to be said that another great part of the show, was always the little "sketch" scenes that would happen at the beginning and ending of episodes, as well as the breaks they would take during the movie. Every episode during the Joel era of the show, would start with what was known as the "Invention Exchange". Basically, Joel and the Mads would present new, typically silly as hell ideas they'd cooked up, more or less competing to see who could come up with crazier stuff. There was never really any payoff to these scenes, per say, no ultimate "winner" in the contest. It was basically just to be funny, and many of the inventions Joel would present, were old props he had previously built and used in his old comedy acts.

Something else pretty great to come out of these "in between" skits, were the songs that Joel and the bots would come up with. Such as "Let's Have a Patrick Swayze Christmas", or the Jet Jaguar song (a riff on an actual song in the film Godzilla vs. Megalon). But there's also my personal favorite, "The Gamera Song", which evolved over the course of the different Gamera episodes they had. It too is a riff on the actual Japanese Gamera song in the later Gamera movies, and features the immortal lines:

"Gamera is really neat!
 Gamera's a tasty treat!
 We've been eating Gamera!

All things must come to an end?

A new era.

Sadly, I discovered Mystery Science Theater later than I wish I had, because while you could definitely argue that the show had really hit its stride and reached its apex in Seasons 3 and 4, the fact is, I only got roughly two full seasons' worth, of the Joel Era that started it all. Which also, by the way, happens to be my favorite era of the show. I make no bones about the fact that I'm a "Joel guy", and in general, I consider the 91-93 era, with Joel, TV's Frank, and Dr. Forrester and TV's Frank, to be the greatest era of the show's history.

I actually vaguely remember the episode, which aired on October 23rd 1993, which saw Joel leave, right in the middle of the season. And at the time, while as a fan I was happy to see the Joel character finally escape and have a "happy ending", I was also really sad and kind of confused, as I had no idea why he suddenly and abruptly left. He was replaced by this new guy, a temp hired by the Mads named Mike, who they shot up into space to replace Joel. While I might have recognized Mike from the few cameo appearances he had as various characters prior to this, I had no idea back then that he was a long-time writer for the show behind the scenes. So as far as I knew, as a fan, Joel was just suddenly gone, and here was this NEW guy replacing him. And while I didn't mind him, I hated that Joel was gone, and thus wasn't a big fan of Mike and the changes. I warmed up to Mike as the host more years later, as an adult.

The Reason.

I also, of course, had no way of knowing that there were behind the scenes reasons for Joel's abrupt departure. I would find out, years later thanks to the internet, that while Joel initially publicly claimed that he was leaving the show due to being "uncomfortable performing in front of the camera" and wanting to move on to other things, the truth was far less benign. The reality was, that MST3K had become a very popular program, and producer Jim Mallon, who was also the long-time voice of the robot Gypsy, was pushing for the show to get "flashier" production values, as well as pushing for there to be an MST3K theatrical film. Both of these things, and probably other issues, Joel had serious problems with, as he wanted the show to stay true to its "DIY" and low budget roots. This caused serious tension between the two, and Joel, being the bigger man, decided that he cared more about the show continuing to exist than he did about getting his way, so he chose to leave. In doing so, he also basically handed over full ownership of the MST3K property to Mallon.

In more recent years, Joel has stated two things about his departure. The first, was the revelation of the real reason he left, in-fighting with Mallon, and that he hadn't actually wanted to leave, that he considered it "the perfect job" and loved his baby (the show itself). But he also even later stated, that it had "always been the plan" for him to eventually step away from the camera and for the show to potentially have a variety of hosts. I'm not sure if that last part is 100% true, but if Joel says so, then I'll trust him. Regardless, I had also heard, years ago, that when Joel decided to leave, he personally singed off on Mike Nelson, whom he had worked with for years, as his replacement. That makes the move easier to take, but I'm going to be honest with you. I will always wish that Joel's run as the host had been significantly longer, because his brand of humor, his vision, and his personality are part of what made me such a fan. I will also, consequently, as a fan, never forgive Jim Mallon for being the cause of Joel leaving his own creation behind. If anyone should have left in that situation, it should have been Jim. In the interest of fairness, as the story goes, it was Jim working at KTMA that helped get Joel's idea off the ground and on the air in the first place, so it's entirely possible that we do have him to at least partly thank for MST3K ever even existing in the first place. But the fact remains, that the show was always Joel's creation, and he never should have been put into a position where he not only left it behind, but left its ownership in someone else's hands.

And the real irony in all of that, is that when Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie hit theaters in April 1996, financially speaking, it bombed. And in spite of never liking that Joel left, I went and watched it in theaters. It was perfectly fine, and funny enough. But that's the thing, it really was just a slightly more expensive episode of the TV show. The movie they riffed, the 50s sci-fi classic This Island Earth, while it certainly has things to riff, is hardly a bad movie, in fact I consider it to be one of the better science fiction movies ever made. Ultimately, I see Joel's point in the pointlessness and absurdity of even HAVING a movie, for a show that is already a feature-film-length program ABOUT riffing other movies. And for Mallon pushing THAT, as being the main reason Joel left, it just feels really petty and unfortunate (on Jim's part, not Joel's).

New era, new channel, new villains.

I know that I kept watching, at least sometimes, after Mike became the host. For Mike's first season and a half, it was still the same basic set-up, with Dr. Forrester and Frank as the Mads, the same voices for the bots, etc. The only real difference, outside of Mike not being Joel, was that they dropped the whole Invention Exchange deal, as that was also Joel's thing, and because Mike's strengths were more in character acting and not prop-comedy. Something I actually didn't even remember as a kid and pre-teen, is that after Joel left, they stopped using the Gizmonic Institute, as he had apparently owned the rights to that specific idea also, and asked them not to use it anymore. The show just referred to "Deep 13" itself instead, from that point onward.

TV's Frank wound up leaving the show after the end of Season 6, Mike's first full season as host. I have always felt that one of the main reasons he, and later his good friend Trace Beaulieu (Dr. Forrester and Crow) eventually left, was because they were Joel's friends, and it wasn't the same without him. I'm sure there were other elements involved in their departures, but that was the impression I had always gotten. Season 7, which was a very short season due to producing the pointless movie that easily could/should have just been an episode, saw Dr. Forrester instead visited by his mother, Pearl (who as a funny aside, I always thought looked YOUNGER than him). And by the end of Season 7, Dr. Forrester, the guy who had been the ever-present villain of the show since the KTMA days, was also gone.

Beyond that, after Season 7, and the theatrical film, the show moved TV networks. As a neat bit of history, but also a rather lame move, MST3K became something of a flagship show for yet ANOTHER young channel, this time the Sci Fi Channel. The problem was, not only had my interest in the show overall waned since Joel's departure, though I liked Mike well enough and DID still watch sometimes, I didn't have the Sci Fi Channel. So when the show changed stations, I wasn't able to watch it anymore, even if I wanted to, leaving me to completely miss out on the final three seasons. Therefor, I had no idea that Pearl became the new top Mad, nor that the show eventually shifted formats a bit, seeing Pearl chasing Mike and the Bots through space, and later even time. I saw these episodes, much like Seasons 0-2 (and much of 3), retroactively, and I must say, Mary Jo Pehl (Pearl, also previously the Satellite of Love's "Magic Voice" and a writer for the show herself), did a really decent job, and some of those latter day episodes are pretty solid. But as someone who fell in love with the show in 1991, to me, while good, the later stuff just wasn't quite the same.

No hard feelings.

One majorly unfortunate side-affect of Joel's departure from the show, and his replacement by Mike, and frankly, with no one giving a full and honest account at the time of what really went down, was that for years, many fans of the show became split, even vehemently so, over which "era" of MST3K was better. For people like me, who started with Joel, most of us tend to love Joel best. And for people who maybe came on in 1993 or later, Mike was their guy, by virtue of the fact that he was the ONLY host they really knew (though they did still do Turkey Day Marathons with reruns of old Joel episodes). And really, it's kinda shitty and sad that some fans would hate on Joel, because they weren't familiar with him (since he DID create the damn show). Just as much as it's shitty and sad that people would dump on Mike for not being Joel. It isn't Mike's fault that Joel left, and as I said, it's my understanding that Joel at least had a hand in picking Mike to succeed him anyway.

Regardless, for many years, a lot of people thought there was some kind of real animosity between Joel Hodgson and Mike Nelson, which in reality, it turns out there really wasn't. Part of this was somewhat alleviated when Joel finally made a bitter-sweet last cameo appearance in the first episode of the show's final season, in 1999 (pictured above). In story, Joel came back to the ship voluntarily, to fix an error that was going to cause the SoL to explode. But comically, he didn't just try to help Mike and the bots escape with him back to Earth, when he left!


Cinematic Titanic

Part of what fueled the silly fan theories of a real life rift, were the forms that post-MST3K riffing took. In 2006, Mike Nelson, along with Kevin Murphy (long-time writer and voice of Tom Servo from 91-99) and Bill Corbett (voice of Crow from 97-99), started a company called Rifftrax. The original (and still main) premise of Rifftrax, was that they would watch movies, often even newer, more contemporary movies, and give them the "MST3K treatment", which you could then download as an audio file to play along with your own viewing of the film. Hence "Rifftrax". They would later do some actual video file or DVD releases themselves, as well as starting to do live shows, where they would go on tour and riff movies in front of live audiences. Rifftrax is still going strong to this day.

Meanwhile, in late 2007, and running until 2013, Joel got "his" old crew back together, J. Elvis Weinstein, Trace Beaulieu, Frank Conniff and Mary Jo Pehl, to start his own live riffing tour, called "Cinematic Titanic". They did the same basic idea, except that CT was pretty much exclusively live shows (though some of which they would record and put on home video). The fuel for the "rift" fire, came from the fact that, outside of Mary Jo Pehl, these two crews never intermixed, and seemed to fans like two divided "camps", as none of the Rifftrax or Cinematic Titanic folks appeared on each other's shows. That just led fans to believe it was "proof", that not only did real animosity exist, but that other MST3K crew people (especially Trace and Frank who had left the show not long after Joel did), seemed like they were "taking sides".

Put to Rest.

Thankfully, a lot of that was at least MOSTLY put to rest, thanks to a couple of things. One, was that Joel and Mike appeared together on one or more convention panels. And the other, and more prominent, is that in 2016, Rifftrax did a special "MST3K Reunion" show, that finally saw everybody (except J. Elvis Weinstein), all the main players, together on the same live show, riffing shorts and things together. Granted, the players were mostly paired off into their own "groups", Mary Jo and Mike's wife Bridget Nelson, Trace and Frank, Mike Bill and Kevin per usual, and Joel with new arrival Jonah Ray. And that was partially the other purpose of the Reunion show, was to help promote/celebrate the fact that there was going to be more NEW MST3K episodes after some 16 odd years!

The New Crew.

After years of trying, in August 2015, Joel Hodgson finally got back control of his creation. He now co-owns the rights to the franchise along with Shout Factory, the company responsible for home video distribution of the show. Immediately after he reacquired the rights, he set about creating a Kickstarter crowd-fund for a MST3K revival, and in doing so, set Kickstarter records as fans met the initial three episode funding goal within the first two days, and by the end of the campaign, had raised over $5.7 million dollars, funding a full 12 episode season, along with two extra episodes. These went into production in 2016, and Season 11 debuted on the Netflix streaming service on April 14th, 2017. The new crew consists of Felicia Day as Kinga Forrester, the daughter of Dr. Clayton Forrester, and Patton Oswalt as Max, the alleged "TV's Son of TV's Frank" as the new Mads, who operate their secret evil "Moon 13" lab on the moon. The new voices for the bots, are comedians Baron Vaughn as Servo and Hampton Yount as Crow. And most importantly, the new unfortunate victim of the experiment, is Jonah Ray, as kidnapped Gizmonic Institute employee Jonah Heston. Joel himself works behind the scenes as a designer, writer, producer, and even director.

 On a personal level, I like the new actors/characters well enough. Though I will say, while they do a fine job, to me it's just kind of jarring to not hear Trace Beaulieu and Kevin Murphy as Crow and Servo. Though to be fair, I feel that way about when Trace left and Bill Corbett voiced Crow, as it just sounds different. It's like anyone else outside of the original crew voicing the Muppets, like anyone but Jim Henson voicing Kermit. It just Not BAD, just off. But overall, I was and am happy that MST3K is not only back in Joel's control, but also making new episodes. In fact, it was just recently announced that there will at least be a Season 12 coming, and I'd imagine there will be more, so long as fan demand and viewership is there. If I had one major criticism of the revived MST3K, it would be that it seems like the riffs come far too "rapid fire", whereas previously, especially during Joel's era, it felt like the timing was better. That they would crack a joke or two, and give you a few seconds to digest that, or hell, watch the movie, before riffing again. But outside of that, it's high quality stuff.

Epic. Immortal. Magic.

Even though I sadly only got to see two-ish seasons of Joel's era when it was new, Mystery Science Theater still had a big impact on me as a pre-teen. Looking back, I came to the realization that as a kid in the early 90s, I had an incredible deal going on, compared to kids now, at least in my opinion. Just on Saturdays alone, strictly talking about television programming, in the morning I had Saturday Morning cartoons highlighted by the X-Men. Then in the evening on Nickelodeon, I had their "SNICK" block of programming, highlighted by Are You Afraid of the Dark?, and THEN, on many Saturday nights, I had a choice of either MST3K or TNT's MonsterVision to watch. And naturally, I couldn't watch BOTH when they were both on. But still, what a choice! MST3K gave me a lot of needed laughs, sparked my imagination, and showed me more "crappy" old movies that even MonsterVision didn't show. Between the two of them, a whole world of classic sci-fi and horror and adventure and fantasy was opened to me, at a young age, and I'll always cherish that, as I genuinely love those old movies. It is literal truth when people make the claim that "they just don't make 'em like that anymore." 

Like I said, I was, am, and always will be a "Joel guy". It made me incredibly sad as a kid when he left the show, and made me sadder still when I learned why he left later in life. So him getting the rights back and doing the revival show, to me, feels like recompense, it feels like both a closure and a new beginning. As much as I honestly DO like Mike and his era, and as much as I do also like Jonah and this new era, it will, of course, never be quite the same, nor to ME quite as good, as Joel's original era. He just had a feel, a style, and a specific sense of humor, that was all at once snarky, but also kinda classy in a weird way. When I think of MST3K, I think of Joel, Trace, Frank, and the Bots. And I think that goes for a lot of people. But they all have their place, and I think it's cool that we have both Rifftrax and the new MST3K now. The more the merrier! Part of me will always wish that Joel had gotten more time as the original host, just like part of me will always wish that he had chosen to re-take that position with this new show. But at the end of the day, I'm just glad he has it back at all, and I'm thankful that one of my favorite things of all time, is alive and well, and not just slowly fading into obscurity.

If you've never seen Mystery Science Theater 3000, please, hop on Youtube, or Netflix, and fire up an episode. I would suggest starting with the older episodes, but you can just as easily test out the new show, to see if it's your thing. Some of my favorite episodes that I would highly recommend include (listed by movie they riffed):

The Crawling Eye (1958)

Women of the Prehistoric Planet (1966)

Robot Monster (1953)

The Black Scorpion (1957)

Rocketship X-M (1950)

Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973)

Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster (1966)

Gamera (1965)

Gamera vs. Barugon (1966)

Gamera vs. Gaos (1967)

Gamera vs. Guiron (1969)

Gamera vs. Zigra (1971)

The Amazing Colossal Man (1957)

War of the Colossal Beast (1958)

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)

Attack of the Giant Leeches (1959)

The Killer Shrews (1959)

The Magic Sword (1962)

Bride of the Monster (1955)

Manos: The Hands of Fate (1966)

Hercules (1958)

The Magic Voyage of Sinbad (1952)

I Accuse My Parents (1944)

Mitchell (1975)

The Brain That Wouldn't Die (1959)

Santa Claus (1959)

Revenge of the Creature (1955)

The Deadly Mantis (1957)

The Phantom Planet (1961)

Gorgo (1960)

Soultaker (1990, mainly for the Joel cameo)

Reptilicus (1961, first episode of new show)

So make sure to give it a whirl, and revel in the greatness that is Mystery Science Theater!

1 comment:

Welcome Retro Revolutionaries! Feel free to leave your own thoughts or feedback on these fantastic retro memories!