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SOL Post 38 09/15/99
SOL Post 37 08/15/99
SOL Post 36 07/15/99



S.O.L. POST


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Volume 37 www.msties.com August 1999
Formerly The MSTies Anonymous Newsletter: News for the Obscure Convergence
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THE END IS JUST THE BEGINNING!


In This Issue


"My MST3K Experience" by BadAmish@aol.com
"You Can Call Me Al/Paul" by zapman24@home.net
"Jenny For Your Thoughts" by mre@cinci.infi.net
"Turn, Turn, Turn..." by cambot3000@webtv.net
"MSTable Movies" by RMichel424@aol.com
"The Celluloid Dumpster" by doctor_peanut@yahoo.com
"Better 'Bots and Satellites" by bgibron@yahoo.com
August MSTie of the Month: mre@cinci.infi.net
September MST3K Schedule on SFC
Classifieds 3000
From the Poobah
Disclaimers



"My MST3K Experience" by BadAmish@aol.com (SPOILERS)


I'd heard about MST3K long before I'd ever seen an episode. I knew it was the kind of show I'd love to see; unfortunately, my sadistic cable provider didn't carry Comedy Central at the time, so I had to do without. All was not lost, however. One fateful day I was at my grandmother's lake house. I'd injured myself pretty badly while in-line skating and was stuck on the couch. With nothing else to do, I decided to check out what was on the tube. I flipped through a bunch of boring stuff and suddenly stopped. There it was: the infamous Shadowramma. I knew instantly it was MST3K. Needless to say, I watched it and laughed my butt off. To this day I can't remember which episode it was, I only know that the movie was black and white and Mike was the host.
I wish I could say I became instantly hooked. But I knew that I'd never get to see the show again because evil Cablevision refused to add Comedy Central to our lineup. So I forgot about it (don't hurt me!) and went on with my life. We later moved to an area with Comedy Central, but by that time MST3K was off CC. So I continued on with my life. One Saturday afternoon I was feeling pretty low so I decided to numb myself with television. So I flipped through the channels (sound familiar?), landed on Sci-Fi and... there it was! I found MST3K again. This time I vividly remember which episode it was: 812 Incredibly Strange Long Titled Movie (my name for it). Again I watched the episode and laughed my butt off. But unlike the last time, I was determined not to lose this show again.
I ventured online and got tons of info on MST3K. I bookmarked the schedule and committed the FAQs to memory. I joined the Info Club and began taping the show. I bought the episode guide and learned all about the shows I had missed. Well, I've always been a completist so to rectify this I began to buy the Rhino episodes (at $20.00 a pop)! This is how I saw my first Joel episode: 301 Cave Dwellers, which is still a favorite. I even started tape trading! My first trade ever was for 422 Day the Earth Froze, 706 Laserblast, and 202 Sidehackers. MST3K quickly became a prominent force in my life.
So where am I now? Well, for starters I've acquired all the circulating episodes from K04 to the present. Now I just have to find time to watch them all. I stay up until 1:00 am on Sunday nights to watch and tape the new shows, despite the fact that I usually have work or school in the morning. I quote from MST3K episodes almost daily. I check the Satellite News every day for the latest news. I have posters, t-shirts, and lots of other stuff about this show and I still buy merchandise from the Info Club. I correspond with MSTies from all over the US and Canada. I even riff on other TV shows and movies! To me MST3K is more than just a show; it's an obsession. Maybe I'm weird, but I'm pretty sure that you fellow MSTies understand.
And now, here is my review of 1013 Diabolik. Excellent, awesome, totally cool...the Brains outdid themselves with this episode. First the movie: Diabolik was actually a fun movie. Oh it was bad, and I couldn't understand what was going on half the time, but at least Diabolik wasn't boring. Why was Diabolik such an important guy anyway? It's not like he had Superman powers or anything. And that suit had to go! If he came to save me from bad guys I'd probably die laughing. You had to love his house and that little scene with the dollar bills...you know which one I'm talking about. The riffing was superb (Lyrics by Chachi). Mike and the 'Bots started in and never let up. Now the host segments: they were fabulous! Everything went right. I mean the accidental release with a Radio Shack joystick, a song (something sorely missing from Season 10), the Mads moving on to new jobs, the SOL Handbook... the story was perfectly plotted. BTW, I loved the little tip of the hat (no pun intended) to the Mary Tyler Moore show at the end (It's a Long Way to Tiperary...). I liked the fact that Gypsy is now a huge success, while Mike, Tom, and Crow are sharing that little apartment. I'm glad that Mike and the 'Bots are living together, and still riffing on movies. Could we imagine them any other way? And coming full circle to watch The Crawling Eye was a nice touch. Hmmm, but whatever happened to Cambot and Magic Voice? Well, they couldn't think of everything. I like to think that Cambot and Magic Voice are also inhabitants of Mike's apartment. All in all, the end was just what I expected it to be. It was perfect.
Now I'm depressed. Is MST3K really over? Most likely yes. I honestly can't believe Mike and the 'Bots won't be making fun of bad movies anymore. I still have a tiny speck of hope that some other network will get a clue and bring back the funniest show that ever graced our TV screens. I know the odds are like 1 in 10 billion. But a girl can dream can't she? Well, we have one more new episode left. After that who knows? So enjoy 1003 and the reruns. And keep the spirit of MST3K alive.



"You Can Call Me Al/Paul" by zapman24@home.com


Paul Chaplin walks down the street
He says why is my show lost in the dribble now
Why is it lost in the dribble
The rest of TV is such lard
It needs a photo-opportunity
Does it want a shot at redemption?
Doesn't wanna end up a TV show
In a TV show graveyard
Smolken, Digger Smolken, Digger
Golden Spider Ducks in the moonlight
Far away my good-tasting s'more
Mr. Spit curly Spit curly
Get these Devil Dogs away from me
You know I still find this stuff amusing, but "Nevermore"


If you'll be my Banner-Gram
I can be your crank phone call
I can call you Frankie
And Frankie when you call me
You can call me Paul


Paul Chaplin walks down the street
He says why is SF short of attention
Got a short little span of attention
And why are Sunday nights so long
Where's Mike's wife and family
What if 3K dies here
Who will be the MSTie's role-model
Now that their role-model's
Gone gone
It's ducked back down to infinity
With some beyond -- Disney lawsuit
All along along
There were incidents and atrocities
There were rumors and speculations


If you'll be my Banner-Gram
I can be your crank phone call
I can call you Frankie
And Frankie when you call me
You can call me Paul


Paul Chaplin walks down the street
It's a street in a strange world
Maybe it's the Roman World
Maybe it's his eighth time around
He kind of speaks the language
He holds no sureness-ity
He is a Brainy man
He is surrounded by the sound
The sound
Squat crimson pigs in the marketplace
Apples and oranges
He looks around, around
He sees AMC in the architecture
Spinning in inanity
He says a friend! And how do ya do?


If you'll be my Banner-Gram
I can be your crank phone call
I can call you Frankie
And Frankie when you call me
You can call me Paul



"Jenny For Your Thoughts" by mre@cinci.infi.net


Well I must admit I was surprised when Sci-Fi advertised the last MST3K episode. (An MST3K commercial: how long has been since we saw one those?) But it made me sad. Not only because it was the last MST3K episode, but also I won't be able see it. You see, from August 5th to the 17th, I'll be on vacation in Hawaii. While you all get see last MST3K and tape it, I won't. I won't even get write about it. In fact, I had to pre-write this article. But I will comment on it in September when the actual last MST3K episode (1003) is aired. So I give you the only non-cancellation article. I hope you like it. It is to make up for me leaving. A combo of Star Wars and MST3K, wackiness ensues. So go across the galaxy with the crew of MST3K and enjoy. (Compact version. I'm sorry to any Star Wars nuts but I'm little bit hazy when it comes to plot. So if I miss any of your favorite characters or put something in the wrong episode or out of place, I'm sorry.)


[Editor's Note: With apologies to Jenny, "MSTie Wars" will be saved for a future issue of the SOL Post.]



"Turn, Turn, Turn..." by cambot3000@webtv.net


It's practically like a death in the family.


As I write this, it's six more days until episode 1013 airs. Six more days until Mike and the 'Bots sit through their last experiment. Six more days until this obsession I've had for 10 years comes to an end. And in a way, I'm actually kind of happy.


I was one of those lucky people to live in Minnesota when the show began airing locally. I was 14 years old when my first exposure to Joel and the 'Bots took place on New Years Eve 1989 as Gamera took on Zigra. It was hysterical, original, and inspiring. Nothing I had seen before came close to it. And one episode is all it took. From then on, I was a huge fan.


When the KTMA MST convention took place in an over-18 comedy club, I still managed a way to get inside. When I was at school, I was constantly drawings pics of Servo and Crow. When the show got picked up on cable, I lobbied like a madman for my local cable operator to pick it up. And when the Satellite News started selling merchandise, I was determined to buy every single item. I needed these things! After all, I was a huge fan!


Maybe TOO huge of a fan. The troubles began that crazy year when I constantly told people on the X-Band Network that I was one of the staff writers. Many people believed me, and when they eventually found out the truth, I felt as if I had stabbed them in the back. I look back at that now and can only claim insanity. There was a line that could be crossed, and I crossed it with a flying leap. There were other things, but I think you can guess for yourself.


But fortunately I redeemed myself in ways I don't feel I deserve. For the past few years I had the pleasure and the honor of assisting Best Brains with certain materials at the copy shop I work at. While it had its drawbacks (such as disappearing and not conversing with MST sites - like this one), I wouldn't have given it up for anything in the world. The things I've seen and the stuff I've done have been practically the happiest moments of my life.


You see, what I'm saying is it's okay to like something and be a fan; but it's important to live as well. I mean it. If you like South Park, great! Just don't kick babies. If you like Star Trek, good for you. Just don't learn how to speak Klingon. The only reason why I'm writing this is to pass the word to people who were like me. Let this be your chance to do things right.


When the final episode of MST ends, a part of my life will be closed. I'll miss the show obviously and still have that fleeting hope we haven't seen the last of Mike and the 'Bots (knock on wood). But the other half thinks it's been one hell of a ride. He's tired and is curious to see just what's on the other side of the Hexfield Viewscreen.


With great respect,


Jake Ignatowicz



"MSTable Movies" by RMichel424@aol.com


First off, I want to apologize for not having an article for the past few issues. I haven't written since the announcement that MST would not be continued on again by another station. I will once again suggest films, but these are now suggestions for home MSTing since Mike and 'Bots are no longer an option.


Tommy Tricker and The Stamp Traveler (1988)
This film comes from Canada. This movie is a lame excuse for a kiddy flick and features several of the most incredibly dorky pre-teen kids I have ever seen in a motion picture. I saw this one on Showtime and had to record a copy to make fun of myself. The story is as follows...
It starts off with Tommy Tricker ("Tricker's the name and trickin's the game") trying to sell stamps during the stamp club meeting. The stamp club is full of the dorkiest kids you will ever find assembled. Albert, who I consider the Duke of Dork, complains and rules that no one in the stamp club is to sell or trade stamps. Tommy later goes to Ralph's house. Ralph, who stutters almost as bad as Porky Pig, is duped into trading a rare stamp for one's he thought were very good. But, Tommy leaves a set of worthless stamps and runs off with valuable stamp. He sells it for $300 and buys his low-income family some groceries. Ralph and his sister go to the stamp store to try and replace the stamp, but it turns out it is more valuable than Ralph thought and is worth $600. Ralph runs off to steal the money from Tommy so he can try to buy back the stamp. Meanwhile his sister is crying at the stamp store and the give her a stamp collection book they haven't had a chance to look at. Ralph is chased away from Tommy's apartment by Tommy's two little brothers who are smaller than Ralph (what a wimp). Ralph returns home and is still scared his dad will find the stamp missing. He rips up the stamp book that his sister got and then discovers a letter in the cover of the book. It is from the original owner who says he hid his best stamps on the other side of the world. They later discover a second letter in the back cover. The letter contains a magic spell that will allow the person who says it to ride on a stamp. They later get chased by Tommy's best friend Cass through a mall. Cass sounds a lot like Barney. All this happens while a fellow schoolmate sings a song on stage at the mall ('and Hanson is born!'). Later Ralph becomes animated and is beamed into the stamp while kazoo and banjo music play. Tommy finds Ralph on the stamp and mails him to Ralph's sister's pen pal in China. And then the real adventure begins.



"The Celluloid Dumpster" by doctor_peanut@yahoo.com


Hello, and good day. Welcome to the first installment of "The Celluloid Dumpster". Well, regrettably, Mystery Science Theater 3000 is no more, except for reruns (time to stock up on tapes!). What's a MSTie to do? Remember what the Brains have said time and time again about MST3K? It's about joy, the joy of getting a group of people together to watch a movie. So, go rent or purchase some cheesy films! Gather together a group of your most clever friends, or a group of fellow MSTies, and mock that film! That's the whole purpose of this column! I'm trying to get you folks sustaining the spirit of MST3k, by lambasting the multitude of lame movies still out there. I will present two films an installment, usually with a theme. Plus, bonus contest at the end of the column! Ooh, space-filling thrills!


Cuban Rebel Girls (1959)
AKA "Assault of the Rebel Girls" and "Attack of the Rebel Girls"
68 minutes
Black and white
Plot: My country, 'tis of thee... ever wanted to overthrow the government of a small island country? No, eh? Neither have I. But Errol Flynn (well-known actor and star of such films as "Captain Blood", "They Died with Their Boots On", and "The Adventures of Robin Hood") apparently had the rebellion bug. He starred as himself, aiding Fidel "The World's Oldest Teenager" Castro in taking control. He and the pluckish future overlord are aided by the title females. Eventually (as any history teacher would tell you) Castro takes control.
Cast: Errol Flynn, Beverly Aadland, John McKay, Marie Edmund, Jackie Jackler.
Director: Barry Maher.
Points of interest: Other than the unique storyline? Well, okay. This flick was filmed during the Cuban Revolution, on location! Wowee! Also, this was Errol Flynn's last film, and he stars opposite the sixteen-year-old who was his significant other at the time. Hmm.
Final word: Uninspiring.


They Saved Hitler's Brain (1963)
AKA "Madmen of Mandoras"
74 minutes
Black and white
Plot: He's one of history's greatest monsters... and apparently a prime candidate for a film villain. Well, villainous head. You see, Audrey Caire portrays the loyal daughter of a missing scientist. Her search for her father leads her to the island of Mandoras. Here she discovers that Hitler's alive (and not in Argentina for some reason). His head has been kept alive, and now rules an island of loyal Nazis. The "head" honcho (I know, I should be shot) and his gang of prejudiced grunts have her father in their grasp. Read on to the points of interest for a startling factoid!
Cast: Walter Stocker, Audrey Caire, Carlos Rivas, John Holland, Dani Lynn, Marshall Reed, Mestor Paiva.
Director: David Bradley.
Points of interest: Other than making Hitler a main character, this film is a combination of two films. One part was shot in the 50's, while the other part was shot in the 1960's. Each was done with a different quality of production, and each boasts its own cast. Yet these two were spliced together! I regret MST3K didn't watch this turkey.
Final word: Pointless.


Bonus contest: This month's contest is a doozy! If you can name all the films in the "Ator" series, and send in your correct entry the fastest, I'll print your name, and your quote (if printable) in my column! And that's all... For now.



"Better 'Bots and Satellites" by bgibron@yahoo.com


Vol. 2, Issue 1
Rage and then Regret: Cancellation is Such Sweet Sorrow


It is never easy to say goodbye. For that matter, neither is it that simple to say hello. From the start to the finish, the cradle to the grave, infancy to Strom Thurmond-hood, beginnings and endings are probably the hardest things in life. Great writers will tell you that the toughest challenge they face at the start of any work is that horrible, daunting blank page. That first sentence, that primary thought, that is what will carry the entire work of fact or fiction forward. If it is great, it will be quoted and remembered by a generation of avid admirers. And if it blows, well, then it will blow monkeys. Before your literary thoroughbred has left the starting gate, it has been spooked, gone buck and is put down with an explosive bolt to the cranium.
But the same holds true with endings. Many a time a patron has paid their $8.50 at their local megagoogolplex to see the recent re-re-invention of a previous remake of an otherwise original idea only to see the third act peter out like a case of cinematic pyariah. Be it with a car crash, or a heretofore unmentioned surprise witness, or the long lost relative who happens to have bone marrow to spare, most modern Hollywood films tend to forget the tale they are telling and substitute something only closely resembling a properly linear, story structurally sound, conclusion. The bigger the budget, the more puffy and bloated the cinematographic excess, with stars, cars, bars, smokes, jokes, F/X, defects, and rejects taking the place of ideas, emotional integrity and character development. Most times, these obese scenarios are so overweight and overwrought that they get winded turning into that final lap and grasp at the rail to catch a much-needed breath.
Still, as nauseating as it is to see or read something that is getting it totally wrong, it is all the more refreshing and invigorating to discover something doing it 100% right. The respected critic, Pauline Kael, once said that a great piece of art should make you sad at its ending, since you recognize that you may not see its like again for a very long time. And such is the case with Mystery Science Theater 3000. As "Better 'Bots and Satellites" mourns the passing into tape trading heaven of this recently cancelled show, it is difficult to find the proper number of superlatives to describe the impact, personal, professional, moral and spiritual that it has had on the staff. Someone once said that to be in the presence of genius is to be lucky, but to be touched by genius is to be blessed. I think it was Michael Jackson.
Anyway, I think that it is in order to break the fourth wall, push the envelope and crash through the glass ceiling so a little individualized light is shed on this entire subject. Long ago, when the Earth was green, when all fathers were strong, and mothers kind and caring, I opened my eyes to the new world of wonders around me and proceeded to shriek bloody murder, make a BM and drool, all at the same time. As the year passed, I became older, none the wiser and sixpence none the richer. Cursed with an artist's temperament in a family that worshipped sports and the curative powers of vermouth, I found solace in books and film, music and drugs. Now, mind you, this was back in the days when drugs were considered a right of passage, like nocturnal emissions and buying an album by Styx.
As I puffed on a blunt and rocked to the ever changing radio music being formatted for us by corporate America, I ate my Libbyland dinners and Otter Pops and continued to mature, that is, until I stopped. As my final growth spurt went from vertical to horizontal, I ended up married, with a doctoral degree in jurisprudence and way too much credit card debt. Life seemed to be an unbearable series of minor, annoying irritations and there was no over-the- counter Gold Bond-esque product that could dull the blistering sting of adulthood. Life was crappy, work was crappy, entertainment was crappy, and crap... actually didn't seem that bad.
Then one cold, winters night, our local cable company decided to add 6 more channels to our grand total of 30, and two of them were HA! and The Comedy Channel. Indicating the intelligence level of the folks at Jones Cable, they were going to wait and see what channel got the biggest response, and then cancel the other. Apparently, one could only laugh so much, and having 2 channels of humor was obviously way too excessive for a retirement-based community. The liability insurance alone would have bankrupted a small Asian nation. Well, I sampled both and was shocked to discover the multitude of ways a 3-minute standup routine by a comic with a Jewish or Italian last name (usually centering around the very Jewishness/Italianness of their last name) could be sliced, diced, replayed and repackaged into a day's worth of programming. My basic impression of the channels? Lots of Tabasco commercials followed by several unfunny bits about lawn furniture, usually delivered by a guy in a sweat soaked beige sport coat, followed by ads for pre-computer phone party chats.
Then out of this hemorrhoidial ooze poured forth an apple of gold. A wellspring of happiness. Something simple and pure, something original and good. As the opening credits began and the Linn drumbeat took control, I was transported to the Satellite of Love. There, Joel and his robot pals were cracking wise and offering pop culture quips at a mind boggling and blowing rate. Sure, Servo had a voice only a writer for America's Funniest Home Videos could love, Crow sounded like your doddering Aunt Martha, and TV's Frank, Pearl, Bobo and Brain Guy were time warps away. Still, what it lacked in its flat painted sets and preschool special effects, it made up for in smart, inventive comedy and insight. I was hooked. I was a fan. I was a MSTie. Someone play it for me!
Then, tragedy struck. No, I did not lose a limb in a freak combine accident, or find religion and forfeit all my worldly possessions to a slimy haberdasher named Greg, nor did I set off to make a documentary about a local legend, only to have my footage discovered 1 year later. Our local cable company decided that HA! was better than the Comedy Channel and we lost MST. In its place were more jokes about lousy airline food and endless rerunning of the "The 30ft Bride of Candy Rock". Phone calls were made. Blood oaths taken and favors called in from back "East", but all that resulted were endless showings of "Rabbit Test" and a whole lot of Robin Williams touching himself. (Is it just me, or should the man just simply step up to the mike and buy the damn Micatin?)
Time passed. Coca Cola and the WWF continued its brainwashing and enslavement of a populace. Everywhere, people freely discussed politics, both economic and sexual, and the dramatic merits of Steven Segal. Russia imploded and crumbled and was replaced by an even more unstable form of government. Then, one day a merger was announced. Apparently, coming to the conclusion that twice as much lame comedy could be boiled down and coalesced into one unsatisfactory channel, comedy committed media cannibalism and Comedy Channel, Comedy Central, Comedy Caravan, something like that, was created. The bad? Endless hours of Steven Wright acting barely animate and reciting obtuse, Freudian fortune cookie sayings. The good? The return of MST!!!
Yet, when I revisited it, it was not quite the same. A jolly cherub of a man named TV's Frank was now Dr. Forrester's foil, and Servo had a beefy, ham steak kinda voice, one that reminded people of heaping portions of cheese curds and spent Irish tenors. Joel was still as sleepy eyed and droll as ever, but his environment seemed brighter, cheerier, more plastic than before. It was still the same brilliant show, ripping a hoary old mold pile of a movie into itsy bitsy sound bites of merriment. Add a few whacked out sketches and a jaunty tune or two and laugh yourself blissful. Like an oasis in the middle of the desert, or the Beatles in the middle of Oasis, the SOL soared onward and upward into media nirvana.
When it was announced that Joel would leave, I was more than devastated. The imaginative wind was knocked out of me. After all, I had followed the show for over 4 years, bloated myself on turkey and Turkey Day every single time and filled up a small African nation's GNP with VHS storehouses of my own private boodle. As the episodes moved closer and closer to Joel's swansong, I was misty eyed and mystified about what they would do next. While I knew of Mike, and he had made quite an impression musically and dramatically to the show, I was unsure that he had the jumpsuitness necessary to become the eye of this humor hurricane. As a wise man, H. I. McDonnough, once said, I feared no return of the salad days.
I was glad to be proved wrong. Before you could cry "Jimmy didn't steal no bike," Mike grabbed hold of the reigns on the crazy cult colt and rode it hard toward the horizon. Even when Comedy Central went berserk and decided that MST no longer fit alongside endless viewings of "She's Having a Baby" or bruised repackaging of 20 year-old HBO Comedy specials, I felt confident that the show's unique, extraordinary talent and creativity would carry it to another, more deserving network. Of course, that new home turned out to be the Sci-FI Channel, and my heart sank for 3 simple reasons; (1) our cable company did not carry it, (2) they were stuck with only horror or science fiction films, and all I could think about was leather coats and ducktail hair and (3) my inability to be moved, shaken, or made conscious by shows with names like Monsters, Highlander, or Freebirder.
Sci-Fi should have felt lucky it had MST. After finally getting our outdated cable company to add it, and viewing a week's worth of shows prior to my first new 'Bots offering, the channel surely needed something funny, elegant, fascinating and made after the advent of color. Sure, The Twilight Zone is a classic series, but somehow, Amazing Stories always looked like Steven Spielberg's skid-marked boxer shorts. Some people find Lost in Space classic in a cheesy, post modern, kicky kinda way. I found it deeply disturbing and realized why I never watched it when it first aired on television. After all, how entertaining is it to a 6 year old to see a mincing pedophile chase a boy his own age for an hour?
Then, like a light at the end of a tunnel, a beacon across a foggy northern port, or 'Baby on Board' sign poised in the back corner of a yuppie minivan, Mike and the 'Bots returned to my life. They were better than ever. Planet of the Apes take? Timeless! The Brain Guys? Inspired. The return to Ancient Rome? Et Tu brilliant! Film after drecky film unspooled, as the gibes seemed fresher, more polished and precise. Sure, Crow's new voice sounded like Rich Little as Fred Travelina as Frank Gorshin doing Crow T. Robot, but after a while, that jarring presence became welcome and joyful. MST was back. And it was back for good. That is, until last week.
I had lived through Joel's pod ride to the Australian outback. I survived TV's Frank's ascension into Torgo Heaven (imagine a Torgo Hell! EWWWW!!!). Even when the gang mutated into pure energy and the Dr. Forrester baby made like a Kubrickian dill pickle burp and faded from Parody Pivot's lineup, I was hopeful. Finally, a chance to exist on a channel that liked, nay, loved the show for what it was: a commentary on the very tackiness that has ruined the name science fiction. Then, Sci-Fi started to ruin the honeymoon and played around on the Brains. No new contract, yet. Shorten the season. Mess with the time slot. Basically, crap on the only good thing the channel going on it and rerun Dark Shadows, add 37 failed NBC shows, and get Jim Henson to create a program (from beyond the grave, mind you) featuring a female sequin, something that looks like the title character from "Beauty and the Beast" amalgamated with a box of Fimo and several design rejects of Cookie Monster. Nothing makes me want to watch a station more than marathons of Friday the 13th, the lame- ass tele-visionless series or a five night "Child's Play" film festival.
And so, MST is gone. Leave it to wunderkinds at that dramatically devoid and fantastically flawed dufusy little basic cable channel to even screw that up. Instead of saving the last show for the actual last show, they show it 6 weeks prior to the actual last new show of the series. Hey, gotta make room for more episodes of 'Sightings, a few dozen more Propecia and Free Psychic Reading commercials and dipstick computer graphics that would look antiquated on a Commodore 64. I am Sci-Fi? I am disgusted. I knew that once Sci-Fi version 2.0 was released on the media planet, there would be little room for a cow-town puppet show, no matter how inventive, exciting and boisterously entertaining it was. After all, how effective have Windows 98, and Office 2000 been? I honestly believe that, between them both, there are more bugs than in "The Deadly Bees" and more crashes than in "Crash of the Moons".
So, as I stare at my 90+ tape collection of every MST episode available on tape (from KTMA to present -- I am missing 815 Agent for H.A.R.M. -- can anyone help out?) there is not much more that can be done but grieve. Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (with a dash... God bless you Bob Fosse!) once said that, in order to get over any loss, one must go through five distinct stages of bereavement. These would be, in sequential order, denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Did I suffer from them? Do you have to ask? I would say that I function more or less like an obsessive compulsive with A.D.D. and a bad case of road rage when it comes to MST. On the rare occasions when I participate in those computerized upchuckathons known as chats, I am ethically, spiritually and topographically outraged at the silly comments like "Season 10 is better than Season 2" and "Trace sux". Makes me want to reach right down through my ISP and kick some illiterate non-fan hinder. So of course I was in denial when they said no more. I thought, "It's a joke." No, it can't happen twice. Sci-Fi seemed to like the show so much. Oh, gloom, despair and agony on me.
Then I got pissed. I mean, what do these morons think they are doing? They let that talentless bimbo baggins Apollo Smile host some grade-Z pseudo anime fest, and yet they yank the brilliant Mystery Science? Support that gawd awful offal known as the "Blair Itch Projectile" with several hundred showings of a far scarier infomercial, but cut MST to one showing early Saturday morning? I was ready to throw in the towel, pick up the anti-aircraft device and head to the home of Sci-Fi's programmer. Then cooler heads, and the thought of an extended prison term, convinced me there might be a way out. So I did a little deal making. I actually started watching Sci-Fi. I tried to personally bolster the ratings. I would write love filled e-mails and send hug and kisses e-cards to the head honchos of scheduling, convincing them that if they just spared Mike and the 'Bots from the ax, I would provide them with all manner of services, be it food, religious or sexual.
And you know what? It did not work! I should have known better. We live in a society where the only prerequisites to being famous or lauded are to be young, angry, drunk, gay and disabled. Don't think so? Turn on MTV for 45 seconds and you'll see what I'm belching about. So I became incredibly depressed. I contemplated my navel, or the Navy; it was one of those two. I stayed locked in my room for days, not bathing, eating/drinking or venturing into the real world. Actually, in 2 out of those 3 cases, there truly wasn't much of a change. I would think about the impending end of my favorite television program of all time and creation and I felt my grip on reality slipping, my need to hike my pants up super high increasing, and the size of my knees expanding exponentially. I hallucinated violently, most of the visions dealing with Kevin Murphy, the Friar's Club, and a ginney hen. Ouch!
And now, here it is, just days post finale and I feel I have reached a level of acceptance. I no longer want to firebomb the USA Network. I will simply make rude comments during 'Happy Hour' (except when Ahmed is on... yum!). I no longer need to taste the blood of Sci-Fi programmers in my mouth. I will simply bite down real hard on a penny and feel the shock coursing through my fillings. I no longer require my pound of flesh. Thanks to the multitude of Kaluha drinks I was suckered into buying, I have a sufficient layer of alcohol bloat coating my entire body to get me through another 700 episodes of Poltergeist: the Lethargy. Sure, I will no longer have the pleasure of seeing my favorite comedy team zing it to John Phillip "there- ought-to-be-a" Law or Alan "waiting-to-ex" Hale. No more giant bugs. At least not ones that you all can see. No more faux British mediocre macabre. Unless you count Ruby Wax.
That's right, its over. And the end was as painful as the beginning. After all the calls, all the waiting, all the delays, all the preemption and schedule shuffling, all the cable channel moves and programming debacles, Mystery Science Theater 3000 now takes it place in the pantheon of broadcasting glory. Just think, a few decades from now when there is a huge MST renaissance (not renaissance fair, mind you) you can tell your grandkids that you were there at ground zero. You witnessed its birth, its painful adolescence, its grandiose adulthood and its graceful retirement. Without your generation, your support, your blood, sweat and beers, they would not have this merry mother lode to obsess and live through. Tell them that, and when you do, tell them proudly. Proclaim your MSTie number! Don't be surprised, however, when they place you in a home and basically forget your existence upon the planet. After all, as a wise man once said, life is hard, but growing old is a bitch. As are all endings.



August MSTie of the Month: mre@cinci.infi.net


Name: I'm known by several. My name is Jennifer Erdahl but like being called Jenny. Also on BBoard I'm know as Kismet1.


Other Science Facts: I'm 21 year-old female who is addicted to MST3K. I've been a fan since 1994. I'm a junior at Rio Grande College in Ohio (not Texas, and don't worry if you’ve never heard of it). I always write a column for MSTies Anonymous called "Jenny For Your Thoughts." But it's thanks to the MSTies Anonymous Poobah that my columns have correct spelling and grammar (I'm very bad with them).


Where I Live: I live in Cincinnati, Ohio... Near Hamilton county if anyone lives in Cincinnati.


My MST3K Experience: Well, it all started when I saw the show on TV. The image had lots of static and I was only one who could see it. But I had no clue what was. Later I found out the episode I first watched was 316 Gamera vs. Zigra. Then one day it was gone. Some time later I was babysitting some kids who had cable. I turn on TV and there was that show that I could only see. I found out it was called Mystery Science Theater 3000. I beg my mom for the Comedy Central and she said it take while. In mean time I would baby-sit those kids, no matter what, just to see if I could watch more of Mst3k. I ask someone on net for episode or two and got it. On tape I saw 423 Bride of Monster, 508 Operation Double 007 and 519 Outlaw. On the Net, I found out that Joel left show and there was a new guy on the show. Finally I got cable, so I was happy. I watched and traded tapes. I cried my eyes out when it got canceled from Comedy Central. I made my dad watch 706 Laserblast with me so I wouldn't have to see it alone. I went see MST3K: The Movie when first came to Cincinnati. I went to the ’96 MST3K ConventioCon; it was on my best times of my life. Some highlights included getting a kiss from Mike Nelson, getting my picture in paper at Con, seeing the writing room, staying up late to see 108 Slime People, and going to the Costume Ball as Mr. B Natural. Some people may remember me; I was one with (I think) the best Mr. B costume and a flute. After the Con, I cheered up when I found out that the Sci-Fi Channel was picking it up. I remember seeing if we had Sci-Fi and we did. I raced home so see the 801 Revenge of the Creature. I then went to college and was scared that I might not get Sci-Fi. But I was happy see that I did. I showed my friends MST3K: The Movie. In ‘97 or ‘98 my sister was going to prom and my mom had to help out with the after-prom party. One of the things they had was an MST3K movie room where kids could watch movies. I was so thrilled (mainly because my sister hated MST3K). I came home to see the setup for after-prom. My friend and I went into rooms. My mom did the famous theater, too.


Interesting Info: I wrote an MST3K crossover fan fiction story called "Shock Theater 3000". I write an interesting thing on BBoard once a week called "Unknown Facts". I’m also a fan of "Rocky Horror Picture Show", The X-Files, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I'm a Christian, but a nice one, not one those Bible-thumping ones. I love writing or e-mailing MST3K pen pals. I like all types music except country, gangster rap and Jimmy Buffet.


Hobbies: Reading, writing, watching TV, listing to music, and sleeping. I like hanging with my friend and dancing either at parties, or in my room. That’s all I have time for.



September MST3K Schedule on SFC


North America
{All times are Eastern and tentative}
09/04/99 - 11:00 am - [0816] Prince of Space
09/11/99 - 11:00 am - [0818] Devil Doll
09/12/99 - 11:00 pm - [1003] Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders
09/18/99 - 11:00 am - [1003] Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders
09/25/99 - 11:00 am - [0813] Jack Frost



Classifieds 3000


solbase@solbase.com writes: "My Tom Servo head auction! http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=145498317 Need a Tom Servo head to start your 'Bot building adventures? Then check out my Servo head auction on eBay! This is it. This is the very item you'll need to work on your buildling of an authentic, fully-working Tom Servo from the show Mystery Science Theater 3000 (MST3K). Yes, this is the exact part you'll need, and is the same exact kind used by Best Brains, Inc., the company that created and runs the hit television show Mystery Science Theater 3000 on the Sci-Fi Channel. Winner pays applicable shipping and handling. There is no reserve on this bid, so win this and it could be yours today! 'Bot building is a great hobby and a wonderful art. It is used by TV fans all around the world, and treasured everywhere. Impress your friends with an actual working Tom Servo head! With a little work, this head could grow into a full Tom Servo! Some Tom Servo's sell for as much as $500 so it's a great way to buy and sell too! Please note that this is only the head, but is the most valuable piece you'll need to construct your Servo. Without it, it's like having a chicken with its head cut off! This auction ends August 18th so hurry and try for it today!"



From the Poobah (SPOILERS)


So, there you have it: the series finale of Mystery Science Theater 3000, 1013 Diabolik, and some of your reactions to it. For me, the final episode was difficult to sit through despite its outstanding riffs. Sitting there on a recliner, Servo replica by my side, Segment 1 really got to me as Pearl inadvertently protocoled the re-entry for the Satellite. As the episode went on, enjoyable riffs such as "He's pretending to be The Pretender," and "This is what they apult their cats with," turned the experience from bearable to enjoyable. But when the feed from Castle Forrester blacked out like in the days of old and the SOL crew survived the crash to live in Wisconsin, I knew it was over. In a way, coming full circle provided us MSTies with a few pieces of advice: to move on from the show, and to carry on the tradition by making fun of bad movies ourselves.
And in a way, that's exactly what will happen. Certainly, we will carry on with our lives without new episodes of the show, but at the same time, it is our responsibility to remember the show and celebrate its eleven-year history. Okay, now I'm starting to sound like a self-help booklet. Anyways, here's the deal with the site...
Since I will be moving to college later this week, I can no longer make any guarantees regarding updates beyond the monthly SOL Post and full coverage of 1003 when it finally airs. Your contributions to the site will still be greatly appreciated, but I can no longer promise updates on as frequent a basis. In other words, stuff will go up, just not immediately. Remember now, the Experiments section only has 50 out of 197 episodes covered... We still need to write up lots of verbatum host segment transcripts! After the year or two it may take to complete the guide, I plan to slowly close down the site and leave it up as a standing shrine to the greatest show ever made. So pitch in your part and remember the greatest show ever made, Mystery Science Theater 3000. Oh, and did I mention the new game of Jeopardy!-esque MST3K Trivia starting September 1st? Be ready to tune in and play for your chance to win a free Rhino tape (your tape is coming, teen!).
Thus, 1013 closes an important chapter of our lives. But every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end. Or something like that.



Disclaimers


All material written by club members in this publication does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the staff of MSTies Anonymous. Endorsement of above publicized activities not operated by MSTies Anonymous should not be implied. Published material is subject to editing only for spelling, grammar, clarity, and formatting; other changes are not made without express written consent of the author.


Mystery Science Theater 3000, its characters and situations are copyright 1999 Best Brains, Inc. This publication is not meant to infringe on any copyrights held by Best Brains, the Sci-Fi Channel, or their employees. "Gizmonics" and all related elements are copyright and trademark Joel Hodgson. This publication is not meant to infringe on any copyrights held by him, so please do not sue us.


© MCMXCIX MSTies Anonymous
The Poobah
mstanon@msties.com
Jet Jaguar kret0419@blue.UnivNorthCo.edu
Zen Psycho zenpsycho@yahoo.com


"This has been the official biopic of Larry Fine."



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