Mystery Science Theater 3000: C/D, S/D.

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when it comes to consumer policing (telling you HOW you should be consuming something) people tend start from a bad premise (ie. MST3K is about making fun of bad movies for being bad) and just line up the dots. add in further bad consumption evidence (gasp - he likes Zappa!) and let your lazy assumptions do the rest.

MST3K is about more than ha ha it's bad. i don't think it's about distance necessarily either, often the shitty b movies that fill their schedule were made to best be appreciated in between makeout sessions, the plots and characters all stock for economy of production and story, etc. ironically some of the best riffs are when they get even more invested in the story than is to be expected, asking questions that the filmmakers didn't consider necessary or important to explain.

Hazy Maze Cave (Adam Bruneau), Saturday, 28 July 2018 15:56 (two months ago) Permalink

yes. i also think it's important to keep in mind that the creators had been weaned on these films/genres/archetypes. as gen x-ers growing up amid the three networks plus UHF stations, they actually would have sat around watching this stuff as the late-night movie, not to mention all the stuff that actually came out when they were kids/teens and was targeted at them in the first place. they've inhabited these films, their values, their pacing, their sense of what counts for plot or characterization. it's not as simple as digging up something they know nothing about and adopting an easy, distant attitude of superiority. maybe with some of the really, really old shorts, or I Accuse My Parents, i guess, but pretty sure they probably encountered that stuff in the course of life too.

This is a total Jeff Porcaro. (Doctor Casino), Saturday, 28 July 2018 21:29 (two months ago) Permalink

Head writer of season 11 Elliot Kalan pointed out on an episode of his podcast The Flop House that the truth is you can make fun of any movie, not only “bad” movies. Which seems perfectly true.

― devops mom (silby)

you can make fun of every kind of movie, but as the mst3k writers point out in the book fujiwara takes such offense to, not every film is equally amenable to an mst3k-style treatment - and the criterion which makes a film amenable to it is not "badness". comedies, for instance, fare poorly, as do dialogue-heavy films.

the political critique fujiwara makes is fairly muddled, as political critiques of this sort tend to be. mike nelson, the longtime head writer, has long been publicly known as a conservative, and presumably as a result of conflicts within the show - frank conniff, for instance, is decidedly _not_ a conservative - the show tends to pull back from overt political elements, a stance which was possible in the '90s in a way it isn't now. which doesn't keep them from spending the bulk of an early episode filmed from a heinlein script taking apart its toxic masculinism.

honestly i'd say far from being an either/or thing, mst3k operates more on what tvtropes would refer to as a sliding scale of idealism vs. cynicism - the show can be harsh and brutal in its condemnation, but never as harsh and brutal as a film like "five the hard way" itself - a film which showed another limitation to the show. in this sense the comedy of the show reminds one of the work of someone like james branch cabell, a popular satirist of the 1930s whose work is famously said to have gone out of vogue because there was no room for someone like hitler in his world.

personally i find it useful to understand mst3k in the context of uncritical fan acceptance and adoration. to be a sci-fi fan in those days required one to love crap in a way that it doesn't these days. i am reminded of colin baker's pushback against fans who said they "loved" the bad special effects in the series - "you didn't love them, you tolerated them". this divide is precisely what separates mst3k from frank zappa's "cheepnis" ethos - attempting to make a deliberately bad film, as zappa did multiple times, tends to turn out unutterably awful. whatever one can say of mst3k, hopefully one can acknowledge that it is several orders of magnitude superior to something like the film of _uncle meat_.

in any case, i'd rather watch the mst3k version of fucking castle of fu manchu again than read another listless example of thundering against like fujiwara's. it's a toss-up between fujiwara's articles and _uncle meat_.

Arch Bacon (rushomancy), Sunday, 29 July 2018 01:40 (two months ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Season 12 on Turkey Day

https://news.avclub.com/exclusive-mystery-science-theater-3000-s-new-season-ge-1829297286

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 15:50 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Is "Well maybe then it's too late" actually future conditional pluperfect subjunctive?

Dan I., Sunday, 30 September 2018 02:29 (three weeks ago) Permalink

New interview with Joel re the new tour (which he's riffing/performing in along with Jonah -- somehow I'd missed that!), Season 12 etc

https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2018/10/joel-hodgson-on-his-mst3k-riffing-revival.html

During the live tour, the MST3K riffers will be tackling several films that were released in 1988, the same year that the show first debuted on Minneapolis public access TV. First up is Canadian monster movie The Brain, “an adorable movie about a giant brain that eats people” in the words of Joel, followed by Deathstalker II.

That is indeed in the same series as the Season 7 Deathstalker and the Warriors From Hell -- that was the third film overall, and needless to say the only point of continuity is the character name (only the first and fourth films had the same actor). Saw it something like 25 years ago -- as well as Warriors From Hell before it was MSTied! Will be out of town when it swings through, oh well.

Long overdue on my part, meantime, but I did finally get around to watching all of Season 11. Truly some amazing garbage films, I think my faves overall as episodes were Cry Wilderness, Avalanche, the two Wizards botches and of course the glory that is Starcrash, but the whole run was solid enough. (If I had a slog it was Carnival Magic, yikes.) But my overall take way back when when I saw the Reptilicus preview pretty much held course over the whole season -- worth it for the terrible movies and the riffing, even if the riffing mostly wasn't as random or deep with the original writer's room. Felicia/Patton always seemed like they were doing a bit and relying on a couple of stock reactions; maybe this next season will help. Yount got into Crow well as the season progressed, I think; Vaughn wasn't quite there but gaining. Gypsy was kinda wasted in her theater appearances, just about all the quips were 'eh.' Jonah's all right I guess.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 10 October 2018 18:03 (one week ago) Permalink

Carnival magic was one of those xanax episodes to put on before bed so you pass right out

YouTube_-_funy_cats.flv (Jimmy The Mod Awaits The Return Of His Beloved), Wednesday, 10 October 2018 19:25 (one week ago) Permalink

A perfect description.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 10 October 2018 19:51 (one week ago) Permalink

jimmy otm

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 11 October 2018 00:27 (one week ago) Permalink

i got tix to see "the brain" and looked up which "the brain" it was (common name) and it's apparently an allegory on scientology, which sounds good to me. stars cynthia preston, which i am very happy to hear, and tom bresnahan, who apparently isn't the dodgers guy but apparently is a maga chud. anyway looking forward to it!

dub pilates (rushomancy), Thursday, 11 October 2018 13:48 (one week ago) Permalink

BTW, the trailer for Deathstalker II. Says it all

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYyulM9Xzgc

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:45 (one week ago) Permalink

Ned you've never seen Deathstalker 2!? It's a fuckin classic!!!

kurt schwitterz, Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:27 (one week ago) Permalink

No, I have! Reread the bit after the quote in my post.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:32 (one week ago) Permalink

isn't that movie super rapey? or am i thinking of another conan ripoff

adam the (abanana), Friday, 12 October 2018 08:10 (one week ago) Permalink

Didn’t RLM cover that one?

Glower, Disruption & Pies (kingfish), Friday, 12 October 2018 16:07 (one week ago) Permalink

this seems bad.

sovereignty flight, Friday, 12 October 2018 20:08 (one week ago) Permalink

oh, and the BBFC website has 5 of the 6 titles that will be riffed
SPOILERS BELOW:

Mac and Me, Atlantic Rim, Lords of the Deep, The Day Time Ended, and Ator.

Kinda disappointed that they are doing an Asylum movie, but I am hopeful that they've learned from last season and have slowed the riffing down a bit.

sovereignty flight, Friday, 12 October 2018 20:54 (one week ago) Permalink

xpost That IS weird but there was a follow-up comment:

Hampton said this on Facebook:

"it’s just a money decision that I even kind of understand and I’ll continue to be there as Crow if Netflix picks us up for more. The new season coming is bananas and so,so good. I’ll be fine."

Ned Raggett, Friday, 12 October 2018 21:05 (one week ago) Permalink

Anyway, as for those titles: finally getting the original Ator, eh? Mac and Me, there's a fine choice.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 12 October 2018 21:07 (one week ago) Permalink

Also the Asylum choice does explain that photo with the bots all with jacked up bodies.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 12 October 2018 21:09 (one week ago) Permalink


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