It's hard to believe it's been 30 whole years since Joel Hodgson and the bots made their first appearance in Mystery Science Theater 3000, then new cable channel, Comedy Central. Joel Hodgson, the series founder and original host will be appearing on stage for a tour of several US cities. Last year, Joel made an appearance for the live show supporting the reboot of the series. For those not familiar, the show was a revamped version of the late night Sci-Fi/Horror host in the style of Elvira or Joe Bob Briggs. In short, take a horribly bad b-movie and present it with some corny puns in between commercial breaks.
What made MST3K different (and special) was that the series featured the presenters (Joel and the bots he built in the first iteration, Mike Nelson and the bots in the second half of the original series) silhouetted in a theater presumably on a spaceship "riffing" the awful flicks. Other characters included a shifting cast of mad scientists and henchmen (Dr. Forrester and "TV's Frank," and later Dr. Forrester's mother Pearl). Mike Nelson and the guys who voiced the bots in the latter half of the series have gone on to do an on-demand series entitled Rifftrax where they continue to give bad movies what they deserve.
The new series stars Jonah Ray as the hapless lost in space crewman and Baron Vaughan and Hampton Yount as the bots Tom Servo and Crow. The new series debuted on Netflix thanks to a Kickstarter funded by fans of the original run.
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Unlike last year's tour, Joel will not only appear on stage but join in on the riffing. The trailer features him donning the familiar "red jumpsuit" of Gizmonics institute for the first time in years. The tour will feature two horrible movies, The Brain and Deathstalker. Select cities will only feature one of the titles. The tour opens in Portland, Maine October 9. Nashville, Tennessee (the home of the live tapings for Rifftrax Live events) will host the Halloween night show and the last live event is scheduled for November 17 in Minneapolis, Minnesota where it all began on local station KTMA. So stay tuned because "in a not too distant future" the new cast of MST3K and the original host and creator of the series may be coming to a town near you.