Tuesday, October 30, 2007

They're Clearly Pandering to Me Now

Today there was the announcement of not one but two new projects by Mystery Science Theater 3000 alumnus. Jim Mallon, producer of the show and the voice of Gypsy, and Paul Chaplin are reviving MST3k.com on November 5 with animated adventures of the bots. Meanwhile Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu, and Josh Weinstein (that would be Joel, Crow, and the original Tom Servo respectively) announced Cinematic Titanic which would be riffing films. They're sketchy on details at the moment but it sounds like they're licensing movies and doing DVD releases.

I don't hold very high hopes for the official MST3k project. Jim Mallon is the force behind it and in my mind he was not one of the creative forces behind the series. Flash animated webisodes about the bots without Kevin Murphy (voice of Tom Servo for most of the series), Trace Beaulieu, or Bill Corbett (voice of Crow for the last few seasons) just doesn't excite me. Have flash animated webisode revivals ever been good?

Cinematic Titanic, on the other hand, could be very good. Besides bringing back the original crew they've also arranged for Frank Coniff and Mary Jo Pehl to help with some of their movies. They're presenting their first work at a special screening for LucasFilm as well which points to a link between their first film and one of LucasFilm's bombs (Howard the Duck, perhaps?). They're aiming for a lower grade of film than Mike Nelson's Rifftrax which I know that I'll enjoy.

I don't think there's anyone involved with MST3k that is not working on something that ties back to the original show now. I can't think of another cult show that has managed such a dramatic revival; I suspect it's because making fun of bad movies is universal.