The Official and Most Rifftastic Mystery Science Theater 3000 Thread

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by cooleddie74, Jun 8, 2015.

  1. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Happy Turkey Day to all my American friends and other posters here and celebrate with a viewing of the very first MST3K Turkey Day bits, broadcast exactly 30 years ago today!

     
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  2. galleywest

    galleywest Lovable Flake Premium Member

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    I did watch some MST3K over the holiday, because you really just have to. It's a staple of Turkey Day. I'm currently watching Village of the Giants, as a matter of fact.
     
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  3. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    JIM BEGG.
     
  4. galleywest

    galleywest Lovable Flake Premium Member

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    It's no The Ghost and Mr. Chicken or Catalina Caper, but whaddya gonna do?
     
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  5. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Not grow to enormous size and terrorize a town with bad slow-motion dancing? ;)
     
  6. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    No, no, no, no, no. YES!

     
  7. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    30 Years Ago Today(December 21, 1991) one of the most popular episodes of MST3K first aired.

     
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  8. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  9. Redfern

    Redfern Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A "private" premiere for KickStarter backers has (at the time of this post) kinda', well, to use the GizmoPlex's own phrase, "The projector broke." The live stream was supposed to start at 8 PM Eastern and seemingly did with Joel thanking the backers. The audio was very muted at first, but halfway through his 2 minute presentation it finally clicked to proper levels. We caught a few stuttered seconds of what I assume are the new opening credits and then it stopped. We were then presented with a "Please stand by" placard under the GizmoPlex logo. Minutes past and maybe a quarter past, Joel appeared on screen to apologize for the delay and estimated possibly ten more. The screen switch to the "stand by" notice again.

    As of 9:45 PM, we are still at that status.

    I'm not a night owl by any means, so in a few minutes I will retire for the night.

    I'm not angry or resentful by any means, just imagining the embarrassment Joel and his crew must feel right now.

    I suspect an e-mail will be sent tomorrow explaining the situation in detail. Maybe they will admit a second private backers' premiere. Who knows?
     
  10. Gepard

    Gepard Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Nah, they just put up a recorded version late last night.

    So far: I like it. The tech side of the non-theater segments needs work, as it's clear they shot this fast and on a shoestring. However, one of the accounts connectioned to production popped into the MST subreddit to explain that Netflix is being a right bastard about usage of the footage and assets from the Netflix seasons, which is why everything got rebuilt with flat painted stage-style scenery. So that's all a whatever.

    Fortunately, they nailed the riffing. Finally. It took a while, but they got the tone dialed in just right. The pacing, the energy, the willingness to leave some dead space, it all feels right. The jokes themselves weren't as diverse and deep-cut as they used to be, but I'm just so happy they're getting the vibe right that I don't care.
     
  11. Redfern

    Redfern Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I knew that technically, I could make a second post without violating forum protocol, but though I composed the following earlier today, I wanted another member to offer their feedback before I "yammered" again. As a result, I was unaware of Netflix being greedy with existing footage. It helps explain I question I have in my second to last paragraph.

    In my last post I noted that nearly 2 hours had passed without the movie playing. Joel crew must have finally corrected the fault because early Saturday morning I tried the link again and there was a video spanning roughly 2 and a half hours.

    Activating it, it started with the same clip of Joel introducing the event and experiencing the audio problems, soft at first and then achieving robust volume. When the feed cut from Joel at the 2 minute, 28 second mark, it displayed the "Please Stand By" placard as it did Friday night. Thankfully, at the 3 minute, 28 second mark, it quickly faded to the opening credits, thus cropping at least 1 hour 45 minutes of "dead air" (probably more).

    From that point, it played pretty much as a typical MST3K episode. Jonah and the Mads (Kinga and Max) present invention exchanges, trade jabs and then the movie is pumped to the SoL, triggering the door sequence. I won't bother with details of the or the riffs as that will bloat this post far longer than it needs to be.

    Since this latest season is hosted upon an online service that does involve some monetary investment, there were no conventional commercial breaks as was the case for KTMA, Comedy Central, and so on. But during one of the host segments, Jonah did give a shout out to a premium backer who I suspect plunked down a multi thousand dollar donation, but they did so in character upon the SoL bridge. At least the sponsor was on theme for a show like MST3K as they're a publisher of books focusing upon genre media.

    From that we cut to a break with Joel (as himself) and writer/producer Matt McGinnus (sp?). It started as though they were going to discuss a legitimate nacho recipe (as this was a live event), but it slyly evolved into an invention exchange routine with Joel demonstrating an off brand soda dispenser offering beverages like Spite instead of Sprite and other parody brands. Joel even acknowledged his inspiration, the old "Wacky Pack" gum card collections.

    The feed cut back to the movie, completing its third and final act. Again, I won't bother with those details. I will only note there was no closing "love" theme as we have grown to expect for the last 30 years. But this was addressed when the feed cut to a 47 minute Zoom call that wrapped up the presentation. In short, the episode as streamed was a rough cut and the credits will added in the next few weeks.

    The call featuring Joel, Matt, and three other creative personnel discussed various subjects including something few would have missed during the opening credits, the scenes within the "Moon 1" control room (where Kinga and Maxx stood) and the door sequence. It was all effectively 2D design, flat artwork instead of physical miniatures as in the past. In brief, it was an aesthetic choice to blend better with what we will eventually see upon the GizomPlex streaming site. Everything within that domain will have a vector line and digital airbrush look, so Joel and the Alternaversal team decided to mimic that style with the environments seen in the episodes themselves. Now, I assumed the new 2D door sequence (closely mimicking what was done for the NetFlix run using physical miniatures) was achieved with with some digital program, but Joel surprised me. An assistant brought in something akin to a tabletop standing picture frame. Held erect was a piece of art depicting one of the bulkheads, one seen in the sequence. But it had sections that slid apart behind which another "standee" could be positioned, one showing another bulkhead. Joel endearingly called the process "flat-imation". So, in a way, they are still kicking it "old school".

    As most of us reading this thread probably know, we will have three different "test subjects" subjected to Forrester's experiments, Jonah, Emily and Joel taking turns. Thus, the latest iteration of the opening theme does not reference a single person, instead relying upon plural pronouns like "they", "them", "we" and "us".
     
  12. Redfern

    Redfern Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Things got weirder than usual in last night's premiere., "Gamera vs. Jiger". A "printed" message preceded the movie noting that the episode would be a bit longer because it was an uncut version of the film. Traditionally, the various teams have tried to keep the full presentation around 90s minutes, sans ads but including the credits and host segments. So that means there's usually 75 minutes of actual film that they riff, almost a highlights reel. the message stated an explanation would be provided during the after-show.

    So the episode ran. Finally, it reached a point in the story when the scientists were trying to determine why Gamera collapsed, unconscious. Having taken x-rays of the kaiju, they found a dark spot within the lungs and at first assumed it was cancerous. But then they considered it might have been a parasitic invasion from Jiger. To illustrate the point, one of the scientists presents footage from a zoo (real footage of real animals) showing an elephant with a section of its trunk horribly swollen. A vet surgically opened the region and...ugh...dear merciful g*d...quarts of "worms" spilled from the opening! I thought, "Why, oh WHY would the Alterniversal team leave that sequence in the film?!" At least Jonah and the 'Bots responded with utter disgust. Oh, the zoo footage itself was greyscale, so that helped...well, a little.

    After the episode concluded and Matt started the after-show discussion featuring 3 writers and Jonah, audiences got an explanation. The owners of the film (I assume the Kadokawa Corporation now that Daiei and Daiei Film exist no more) agreed to the riff...as long as the film remained uncut. So the surgical procedure had to remain though I suspect the MST3K crew wish they would have made an exception. I know that Sony (who owns Toho) plays hardball with Godzilla (how and when he can be used), but it seems the IP owners of Gamera are also getting far more serious in recent years. Gone are the days when Sandy Frank could get this flicks for a song.

    *** *** ***

    Much ado about nothing, but I figured with a new season of MST3K being presented (and gradually, episodically, rather than a full season drop all at once), there would be a bit more discussion in this thread. What happened to all the MSTies? Per the site rules, I can't post again until somebody else does.
     
  13. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, this thread has been close to silent lately. Thanks for resurrecting it.

    Only love pads the thread.
     
  14. cooleddie74

    cooleddie74 Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  15. Gepard

    Gepard Vice Admiral Admiral

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    And I'm glad. IMO, it was an all-time great episode. The extra runtime really helped certain aspects breathe.

    Despite my very positive reaction to the season premiere, I've found the bulk of the season very, very hit-or-miss, with quite a few misses. Some episodes I found entirely, painfully, unfunny. This one, though, everything hit right. Something about the energy of the movie felt infectious and it seemed to have rubbed off on everything; even the host segments had an impish energy I loved.

    I'm realizing Jonah and his team are at their best with the type of movie that induces a sort of giddy incredulity. Every host had their strengths – Joel was best at playing Groucho to any typically banal bad movie, Mike was best with absolute garbage movies that deserved abuse, and Jonah is best with movies that require a kind of anthropological fascination, a how-did-this-get-made WTF amusement. Gamera vs Jiger hit that spot perfectly, and man, I loved it.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Where are these new episodes streaming again? I've totally lost track of their existence.
     
  17. Gepard

    Gepard Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The MST3K exclusive platform The Gizmoplex. It's its own subscription and/or you have to pay for individual episodes.

    (Confusingly, on streaming devices like Roku, the app isn't called The Gizmoplex, it's just Mystery Science Theater.)
     
  18. dupersuper

    dupersuper Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Netflix not good enough for them any more?
     
  19. Redfern

    Redfern Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Rather the opposite. NetFlix dumped MST3K after its 6 episode second season. So Joel and his team started a new KickStarter to develop their own platform. It also gives them more control over the content like releasing the entries periodically, rather than all of once like NetFlix's full season "drops".