Making fun of movies as they’re being watched, aka “riffing” is very prominent nowadays with YouTube. There are tons of channels out there that have people making fun of movies, both good and bad. But, it’s a safe bet to think that some of them got inspiration from a 1990s TV show called Mystery Science Theater 3000.
From 1989-1999 Mystery Science Theater was a ground-breaking show about a man who’s accidentally shot in space, builds two talking robots, and is forced to watch bad movies by a mad scientist. No, really. The first few seasons starred comedian Joel Hodgson, who is also the creator. The robots he builds are named Crow and Tom Servo. After a few years, Joel is replaced by one of the show’s writers Michael J. Nelson. Even with the cast change, it remained extremely popular and a movie was released in 1995. It gained a massive following and is still remembered fondly to this day for its high-brow comedy and wit. Nearly 20 years since Mystery Science Theater ended, it’s being rebooted for streaming services, and Dark Horse comics is producing a comic book.
It’s unknown what the story will be. During the run of the original show, there was a plot going on between each movie screening. So, the comic could be a continuation of that. Obviously, riffing movies in comic form would be tough. Also as mentioned, Mystery Science Theater is in the process of being rebooted. At this time it’s unknown what streaming platform it will go to, though. A mix of new and old writers are returning, and now’s a good time as any to reboot this cult classic.
Mystery Science Theater was one of a kind and still holds a special place in peoples’ hearts. With the reboot and comic book right around the corner, a new generation will be introduced to MST, in the not-to-distant future.