In the not to distant future, somewhere in time and space, Mike Nelson and Joel Hodgson are stuck on the SOL aka the Satalite Of Love. Both sent there by an evil scientist who want's to take over the earth by subjecting everyone to terrible, cheesy movies. The Scientist, Dr. Forrester, and his assistant,TV's Frank, use Joel and Mike to test the terrible movies on and try to drive both of them insane. But to keep them sane Joel created his robot friends(Tom Servo, Crow T. Robot, Cambot and Gypsy) to help them get through the bad movies by making jokes and funny commentary through the duration of the film. Mystery Science Theater 3000 or MST3K as it's called was always a big part of my childhood. Mostly cause this is something that me and my dad would always watch together. I always laughed at the funny robots and loved to go through the opening themes which to this day are still some of my favorite opening themes ever. And now I have been revisiting this old series and have found a new found respect for it. I still love everything I loved back then but one thing I never took in was the comments when they were watching the movie. The Jokes usually flew right over my head and it sometimes put me to sleep. But now I can't wait to get to the movie and see what kind of comments they'll make. So to commemorate this great show I put a top ten list together of my favorite MST3K episodes. And remember this is my opinion and not yours, So you should really just relax.
10. Santa Claus Conquers the Martians
Here we have one from when Joel was running the Satellite of Love. Now to be honest I never liked Joel nearly as much as I liked Mike Nelson on the show. He always seemed to be really uncomfortable when ever he was on camera, and I think he knew this too because that's one of the reasons he left the show was because he didn't like being on camera. But once he got into that theater he was always hilarious especially during the X-mas special of Santa Claus Conquers the Martains. The movie is, in a nutshell, about Martains who want to have Christmas and kidnap Santa so they too can have a merry Christmas. Though while the Comments in the Theater are hilarious, the host segments were great as well. And the one that will always stay in my head is Crows famous Christamas song about his favorite movie "Road House".
Lets Have A Patrick Swayze Christmas
Open up your heart and let the Patrick Swayze Christmas in.
We'll gather at the Roadhouse with our next of kin.
And Santa can be our regular Saturday night thing.
We'll decorate our barstools and gather round and sing.
Oh, let's have a Patrick Swayze Christmas this year!
Or we'll tear your throat out and kick you in the ear!
It's my way or the highway, this Christmas at my ba-ha-haar.
I'll have to smash your kneecaps if you bastards touch my car!
I got the word that Santa has been stealing from the till.
I think that that right jolly old elf better make out his will, ohh,
Oh, let's have a Patrick Swayze Christmas, one and all.
And this can be the haziest...
This can be the laziest...
This can be the Swayziest
Christmas of them aaallllllllll!
Other then that here are some of the notable Riffs from the theater:
Santa Claus: Hello Boys and Girls
Crow: Smoking is good for you ho ho
Santa: We've never disappointed the kids before
Joel: Except the poor ones
Mrs. Claus is freaking out because she's on TV
Tom Servo: When she thinks of the Media she Touches her self
WARNING: MAY CAUSE BLINDNESS AND DEATH
I can't really explain why I like this one. I think it's because I connect with this episode a little bit. In the opening host segment Pearl sends a new couch to the SOL for mike and the bots to look after, immedietly the guys start ruining it so Pearl gets upset and gives them the movie Hobgoblins to watch. It's like those times when your friends would sleep over and everyone is having a good time and then someone brings out a REALLY terrible movie to ruin the mood. Yeah that's pretty much what happend at many of my own sleepovers. Plus this is the only movie to REALLY freak out the guys to the point where their crying and trying to get out of the theater. The Story is about a group of merderous little creatures that escape from a vault and a rookie security guard to bring them all back and stop them. Yes it is a ripoff of Gremlins but unlike Gremlins this has the misfortune to be REALLY REALLY BAD.
Notable Riffs from the Theater:
Show a Bank door with dramatic menacing music
Mike: That Bank Door Killed a Man
Kevin looking into a van door: OH NO, their gone
A Hobgoblin suddenly attacks
Crow: Drive us to Chuckie Cheese
Tom Servo: Meet the Hobgoblins Franky, Sniffles, Bounce Bounce and The Claw.
8: The Puma man
This is by far one of the worst superhero movies ever made, So it's a perfect movie for the guys of the SOL to watch. The Story is about a guy who finds out that he is a Puma man and has superpowers similer to that of a Puma. Now he must stop evil scientists from taking over the world and save the girl in the process. Sounds like any other kind of super hero right? Well I think the director went out of his way to make Puma man one of the Wussyist superheros ever. He fights like a wimp, he has his aztec buddy do most of the hard work for him and when it comes to flying this poster dosn't lie
There isn't much to say about the host segments in this one because they arn't nearly that memorable. But the comments in the theater make up for that cause they are really funny.
Noteable Riffs from the theater:
Crow: Yep he can sense danger, A postet note can sense danger better then this guy.
Puma man drops a crook from high above
Mike: Help I'm falling at a 60 degree angle breaking all the laws of Physics
Puma man attacks someone
Tom Servo: Grr I'm a deadly puma be frightened of me
I love this episode cause it deals with probley the closest thing to Hellraiser that MST3K can get. The story is about a group of teens that die in a car crash and have an out of body experience. Meanwhile they are pursued by death and now they must escape from him and get back to their bodies if they ever want to live again. I love this episode because it deals with those really cheesey horror movies from the 80s that arn't scary and not that good. Now why did I pick this one over the other terrible 80s movies they watched. Because it has not one but 2 host's, that's right both Mike and Joel on the Satellite of Love. But if that wasn't enough we also get the return of TV's frank as he tries to steal the souls of Pearl and her lackys. Now while I love the idea of having both host's on the satalite of love, they don't do anything with it other then have Mike and Joel interact during the host segments. I wanted all 4 of them to go into a bad movie and have them all gang up on this movie. But you can't always get everything. Though I do honestly believe Joel when he said "My time on the Satalite of Love were the best years of my life".
Memorable Riffs from the theater
Crow: Does anything really star Joe Estavez isn't that an Oxymoron.
Mike: It's some kind of Moron.
Brad: Hey your the guy who was out in the middle of the road. You made me wreck my car.
Mike: That Tightens my pants
Soultaker: We're on the second floor, My world
Tom Servo: Where I'm more successful then Martin Sheen.
6. The Screaming Skull
A movie that is so slow moving and boring it should have been called the snoring skull. The Story is about a couple who moves into a house that was once owned by a rich entrapanour that died. The women of the couple keeps having haunting visions and hearing strange noises, what else could be happening in this house. MY GOD, this movie was boring and slow everything about it was just so drawn out that if the MST3K guys hadn't have been there, I think I may still be watching it. There isn't much to the host segments in this episode except for a really funny sketch where Crow tries to freak Mike out by taking off his head and painting it a skull. But what really made this my #6 was the comments in the theater. Their just so fast and funny that it really made the movie feel shorter.
Notable Riffs from the theater:
Preist: She was walking along this path when it started to rain very hard. We don't know what happened but she must have slipped and smashed the face of her skull.
Crow: ANYWAY how are you!
Mike: The Movie that dares to graphically depict sometimes seeing Peacocks and sometimes not seeing peacocks
Man opens door and sees a skull at the base of the door
Tom Servo: Can I borrow some flesh
5: Mystery Science Theater 3000 the Movie: This Island Earth
Okay okay I may be cheating a little bit with this one, but really the movie isn't much more then an episode of the show with a bit of a bigger budget. The story of the movie is about aliens that come down to earth so that they may take it over since their own planet is dying. Yeah there isn't much else to the story besides that and it really feels like an episode of "The Twilight Zone" then an actual story. But what really puts this into the #5 spot is that you get to see more of the ship during the host segments. You get to go down below to the bottom of the ship and see Crow try to "dig" his way back to earth, the cast actually walking through the Door hallway and Tom's room which is pretty much what mine looked like at age 6. Plus the movie has some of the more recognizable quotes from inside the theater.
Notable Riffs from the theater:
Mike: Isn't the fact that it's universal make it International
Meacham: What I want to know is....
Exeter: Who we are... Why we're here.
Tom Servo: And why there is a picture of a burger on the wall
Crow during the credits to the movie: Puppet wrangler? There weren't any puppets in this movie.
4: Space Mutiny
or Mutiny in Space
How can you make an almost unwatchable piece of Sci-Fi garbage, like this. The story for Space Mutiny is.......well.......uh about a mutiny in space. Yeah the story is about as understandable as a book written in Latin and translated by a Blind person. This episode is beloved by many MST3Kers due to just how many bad things there are in this film and how Mike and the bots really find alot of them. Like how alot of the people seem to look like other celebrities or that the female protagonist is alot older then she is supposed to be. Or how about all the railing deaths that are in this movie which makes Tom make railings all aboured the SOL that are more dangerous then helpful and may we not forget the death of a character, only to have her alive and well working in the very next scene. The thing I noticed though that the guys didn't was that all the outside shots are taken from "Battlestar Gallactica" which they say they didn't know when filming the episode. A very funny episode but not my favorite.
Notable Riffs from the theater:
Mike: Special effects by Industrial Light and Morons
Tom Servo: If the first ten minuets are any indication, this movies gonna blow
Man: Listen Lady
Crow: DOCTOR LADY!
I honestly don't know what it is about this one that makes me love it so much. The writing and Riffs are as funny as they always were, the host segments are also funny and cleaver dealing with Mike and the guys drifting through space as Doctor Forrester is forced to close up shop. I think it's because of this movie and how stupid and cheesy it is. The story is about a young teen who finds a laser in the desert and decides to keep it. Pretty soon the Laser begins to take him over (don't ask me how) and he starts to go on a rampage. This movie is pure grade A cheese coming straight from the udder. It's basically what would happen if the Incredible Hulk got a Lasergun and then went on a rampage. This episode is also a last episode for performer Trace Beaulieu who played both Doctor Forrester and was the voice of Crow. I love the host segments in this episode where they keep drifting through space and run into such things as a giant baby field in space and the edge of the universe. Yet again I can't pick one thing I love from this episode it's just one of my favorites
Notable Riffs from the theater:
Mike as Billy: Yeah I think you are gonna detail my van for Seventy Five Dollars
Billy: Paw pow pow
Tom: Ha after all that it's Paw Pow
Mike: You know once your over 11 you shouldn't say Paw Pow
Chuck: Whoa mama. Wouldn't Chuck like to give you his red hot frank.
Girl: From what I hear, it aint so hot
Crow as Chuck: She undercut the subtle nuance of my wiener joke!
My my my my my Joe Don Baker why did you make this horrible piece of crap. The story for Mitchell is about a Drunken Slobering cop that is pulled into a drug syndicate investigation. That's about it for the film not much else to say. The Comments from Joel and the bots is always the best part of this episode. They really tear into this movie and make some really funny comments about alot of things. But one of the main reasons this is at #3 for me is because this is Joel's last episode on the show. The Mads decide to kill off Joel, but Gypsy heres thier evil scheme and with the help of the new intern Mike Nelson she is able to get Joel off the SOL and back on to earth. While I didn't like Joel as much as Mike, this is still kinda sad to see Joel leave. And they do it very abruptly too. One minuet he's there the next he's gone. This kinda departure was really kinda sad and that's one of the reasons this is my favorites.
Goodbye face in a red jumpsuit
Notable Riffs from the theater:
Deaney: How do you take your Scotch, Mitchell?
Crow: Uh by the Quart
Woman is in bed with Mitchell
Joel: Baby Oil
Joel, Crow and Tom: AAAAAGGGGGGHHHHH
Tom: (Vomiting) Why would anyone want to do that with Mitchell Joel?
Mitchell is trying to scale a fence
Joel: Man this is hard to do after six sour creme burritos
Axton sings the theme song
Axton: My my my my my Mitchell, what would yo mama say?
Crow: She'd say "he's not mine, you can't prove it"
And my #1 MST3K episode is MANOS!
The Hands of Fate?
Ah Manos the Hands of Fate. Widely considered one of, if not the best MST3K episode ever made and widely considered one of the worst movies ever made. The story is about a family on vacation that stumbles upon a small lodge that might just have more going on then it's being out in the middle of nowhere and creepy caretaker may show. This is my favorite episode ever because it has everything you want from MST3K. A terrible movie, funny host segments, top notch riffing everything. Some of the most memorable lines in the entire show come from this episode. Like the Pizza scene featuring Torgo at the end of the show and the constant questioning of what their watching. And if you may recall there was a certain tribute to either this movie or this show in a Futurama episode.
I can't recommend this episode enough to people who would like to get into this show. This is a great starting point.
Here are only some of the hilarious Riffs in this episode:
Mother: Why don't we sing a song to help pass the time.
Joel in little girl voice: Lets sing something from Pearl Jam
Joel: Manos the hands of Fate was filmed on a Vacant Lot
Crow: You can vacation with Torgo, just don't bring your american express card
Torgo: The master want's you
Woman: Want's me? what kinda talk is that?
Crow: Why it's oily sleezy talk
Tom: Torgo your missing the fight get your Dress on and get in there.
Sadly the show was cancelled in 1999 because of a change in management. As the show was 2 hours long and involved many discussions over rights to third party movies the show was a hard sell for the network to except. Despite having a HUGE fanbase and critical approval the show was still shut down (those Sci-Fi/SyFy idiots). Reruns were shown until 2004 and many collections of the episodes can be found in DVD's. Don't worry about the Cast and Crew though because they have found other things to do. Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphey and Bill Corbett moved on to making Rifftrax's, audio commentarys for more recent films that still is in the style of MST3K riffing. And Joel Hodgson and Trace Beaulieu went on to doing Cinematic Titanic more in the way of MST3K due to the still classic bad movies and Silloets. You can find them at here
also you can find many of the episodes here:
or you can find many episodes on Youtube as well
And those are my favorite MST3K moments, just remember that if you work at Gizmonic institute that your on the bosses good side.