My Gamera Love Niche with MST3K
In the not too distant future...
Mystery Science Theater 3000
Or is it My Love Itch with MST3K?
As a MSTie, I've treated myself to the delicacies of each episode. Like a fine wine, they have their own special- let us say- flavor. For those of you who are a lowly novice, let me enlighten you on this show. As you'll see, it's at least three times as good as a Renaissance Festival, and half as painful as a root canal.
All images not otherwise noted are copyright Best Brains Inc. and are used with their permission. Written proof of their approval is available upon request.
Disclaimer. I wrote this article in a humorous style dedicated to the geniuses of MST3k. No offense is intended to anyone- living or dead. Or a vampire. Or even a zombie.
My Personal Story with This Show
It started with monster movies.
It all started when I used to watch monster movies with my family as a child in the sixties. It was a great weekend event. We gathered together in front of the black and white TV and watched movies like Frankenstein or The Giant Leeches. It didn't matter how good or bad the movie was, it was just fun.
I especially remember watching The Screaming Skull and getting in trouble because I kept saying to my little sister in a spooky voice, "The Screaming Skull is coming for you!" Aren't big sisters the best?
My Dad was a Geeky Guy
My Dad was kind of a geeky guy. He had subscriptions to Mad Magazine and Fangoria. We would fight over who got to see them first.It was hard to catch all your favorites before VHS, so when I grew up and Mystery Science Theater started, I was excited to see them again. I was even more pleased to hear them add wise-cracks to the dialogue. This show started at a time when I had just moved into my own studio apartment in New York City (I had always been sharing before). I bought my studio a new look with yellow flower sheer curtains and a new Indian style duvet set for my bed. I had a back apartment facing a beautiful urban courtyard with people's yards, flowers and trees.
As a teacher, I had the summer off and my TV treat was to watch reruns of Lost in Space and new shows of Mystery Science Theater.
Joel and Mike with the Bots
What is MST3K?
Advanced beings may skip this section.
It is the brainchild of talented actors and writers. Starting out as a local show in Minnesota, it eventually got picked up for major distribution by Comedy Central and then the Sci Fi Channel and it continued to be a hit.
The basic premise is that two mad scientists send one of their institute's employees into outer space to conduct mind experiments on him by showing him bad D grade movies. To ease the pain, the employee builds robots that he can converse with and make his time up there more bearable. As they are forced to watch the movies, they quip and make fun of the action.
For a Character List, check below. In addition, you can find all of this and more detailed information about this TV show throughout the internet 'tubes'. Just type in a search engine - I am an idiot MST3K information.
The Big Burrito - The Ultimate Gamera Collection
Here's the entire series in one reasonably priced set. Rent out a couple of the movies on iTunes and if you like it, come back to this article and order your own personal set with all five movies here.
- SOL aka The Satellite of Love – The spaceship
- Joel Robinson aka Joel Hodgson – janitor sent into space 1989-1994
- Michael J. Nelson aka Michael J. Nelson – next janitor in space 1994-1999
- Dr. Clayton Forrester aka Trace Beaulieu – The Mad Scientist
- Pearl Forrester aka Mary Jo Pehl – Dr. Forrester’s mother
- Dr. Laurence Erhardt aka Josh Weinstein – Dr. Forrester’s first assistant
- TV’s Frank aka Frank Connif – Dr. Forrester’s second assistant
- Crow T. Robot aka Trace Beaulieu then Bill Corbet – a wise cracking robot
- Tom Servo aka Josh Weinstein then Kevin Murphy- a sarcastic robot with good singing capability
- Gypsy aka Josh Weinstein and Jim Mallon – A female robot that runs the whole ship
- Cambot aka Kevin Murphy- a robot that runs the camera
What ARE These Movies?
I am a big fan of Japanese Movies and Animation. There are the classics like The Seven Samurai and the magnificent animated films like Spirited Away. And then there's Gamera.
I love Gamera because he's a flying turtle that shoots fire. How can you not like something like that? In the first movie he is a bad guy, but in the remaining films, he is a friend to all children and wants to help humanity.
What makes this Turtle friend so easy to make fun of is that the creatures are obviously men in costumes. That gives comedians an opening to make fun of the films. But people need to remember that MST3K is an equal opportunity kidder. They make fun of American films as well. Just read the episode lists online and you'll see the dozens of films they've junked.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 and their take on the Gamera movies.
The mad scientists (called the MADS) tormented Joel by sending him Gamera movie after Gamera movie. Joel and the bots developed a love-hate relationship with the movies and did everything they could to have fun with the action. Their most valiant efforts were during the very looong fight scenes between our hero and his adversary.They also made some magical memorable songs about this Turtle.
Music From Some Guys in Space
- TV Show Quotes and Song Lyrics
compiled by Kim Milai
Behold- the SONGS of GAMERA!
My purpose here is to pay homage to a special group of MST3k melodies that are very, very close to my heart.The idea that these writers would take so much of their time and creativity to make songs about a Japanese Movie Monster Character was exciting. They could have just stuck with slapstick jokes for their show. But, as a musician, their song writing inspired me to be an avid fan and to reach for my own goals of producing my own CD.
One song reminds me of the Soup of the Evening, Beautiful Soup Song sung by the Mock Turtle in Alice in Wonderland.The others are wonderful parodies of style genres and real life musicians like Michael Feinstein.
Served To You On YouTube
The Gamera Song
Shows and Toys - Or is it Shoys and Tows?
You'll just have to go out and buy these you silly ninny! Here are some items to gorge yourself on.
Modern Gamera Trilogy - Worth It to See
This is a great series. A brand new take on the Gamera we know and love.