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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:48 pm 
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Hamlet aside, this might be my favorite set.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2016 3:22 am 
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Next Volume Announced

Titles are

Invasion, U.S.A.
Colossus And The Headhunters
High School Big Shot
Track Of The Moon Beast

with another bonus disc- KTMA host segments! The bonus disc is the most excited I've been for one of these in a while!


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2016 8:12 pm 
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matrixschmatrix wrote:
Next Volume Announcedwith another bonus disc- KTMA host segments! The bonus disc is the most excited I've been for one of these in a while!
KTMA bonus disc canned after the source "isn't up to DVD quality." Instead replaced with "Play MSTie for me."

Are there any chances of them putting out some of this extra material on actual retail discs? I'm not going to fork over full retail price just under the hopes that I'm one of the first 1500. I really hate Shout for going this direction with actually interesting material (back when it was just a DVD collection of the film serials, it wasn't such a big deal - but putting out actual exclusive material?).


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2016 1:02 am 
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Play MSTie for Me doesn't actually have any exclusive material though -- at least the VHS version didn't.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:24 am 
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They'll tell you on the page when the 1500 are sold out, the last couple still had bonus discs available after the sets came out


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:47 pm 
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I've started a journey through Mystery Science Theater 3000 with that re-released first volume (I've previously only seen the film and a few episodes on YouTube, such as the one on The Incredible Melting Man).

Catalina Caper (the only colour film on this volume) is actually pretty fun for one of those seemingly endless Beach Party-styled films full of (30-something) teens dancing and loving whilst on summer breaks. Though the rather unnecessary artwork heist stuff made me long for the nail bitingly visceral and complex drama of a Swallows and Amazons plot rather than a 'Allo 'Allo-style 'fallen Madonna with the big boobies' real painting-fake painting tube switching plot. Its probably telling that the whole painting retrieval and bungling criminal plot disappears for about fifty minutes in the middle of the film for stuff about boys and girls having lovers tiffs before all grooving together on boats to the strains of the latest tunes (The Little Richard performance is the obvious high point of the whole film, though it happens ridiculously early on rather than being saved for the big climax). Its quite a (literally) colourful and vibrant film whilst simultaneously being rather listless and with no particular plot drive at all for large stretches!

And I know its ridiculous to morally critique a beach party film of all things, but I'm not entirely sure that the bungling criminals should have gotten away scot-free with their part in attempting to steal a painting. Just because they are the parents of one of the kids (who is suspicious of his mum and dad because they apparently get up to these kinds of antics all of the time!) and there are a bunch of more violent criminals who keep scuba diving over to dad's boat and beating him up for not having retrieved the painting yet, doesn't mean that the parents should have gotten away with it! But it allows for the happy ending I guess, so I'll let it slide just this once!

The MST3K gang seem a little subdued on this one. There are a few nice quips but I got the impression that the sheer length and relative lack of anything particularly noteworthy going on in the film itself made things hard going!

The Creeping Terror is OK, has a hilarious looking unwieldy giant floppy carpet monster and dumb as fencepost teen victims just sitting there instead of running away and occasionally actually helping the monster out by climbing into its mouth! But it does have a fantastic dance number taking place during a dance in the local school gym that ends with most of the kids getting eaten by the very slow moving and uncoordinated monster! This really struck me as being inspired by The Blob in many ways from the monster coming from space to the escalating attacks on different locals around the town (though it anticipates the remake of The Blob in the monster attacking an isolated spot for lovers to park up in and canoodle! Though neither of the Blob films featured the unforgettable image of the floppy monster mounting and then vigorously humping a classic 1950's convertible!) and then the army, until the final showdown in which a car gets its revenge!

So a couple of plus points there in the monster itself and that one musical number but otherwise it just made me appreciate The Blob more! And what was with that strange mix of dubbing, direct sound and narration, going back and forth between all three through the course of the film? That more than anything else made it feel patched together over a long period of time.

The extras are a little disturbing on this one. That trailer and Q&A for The Creep Behind The Camera film (that looks like a kind of Ed Wood-style comedy-drama about the making of The Creeping Terror) make The Creeping Terror seem like it was made by a monster! But so many horrible things seem to be gleefully piled onto the director of The Creeping Terror (including spousal abuse, megalomania, Hitler impersonating, church defilement and even suggestions of the film being made only as a front for other more nefarious things) that it all seemed rather overwhelming and I was left thinking that it might be better to take all of that with a pinch of salt.

Bloodlust was actually really watchable as a film in itself beyond the MST3K riffing. It turns out to be almost a remake of The Most Dangerous Game, just with four kids ending up on the island rather than a 'kindred soul' big game hunter. Its not really in the league of The Most Dangerous Game (its not as fast paced or has as well drawn characters, and has a problem in the final act of sending the kids out into the jungle but then having them all return to the castle for the big showdown. That structure is the same as The Most Dangerous Game, but there was a motivation there to return and save the kidnapped heroine for the final act that just isn't there to the same extent in the kids just 'wanting to return to get some guns'. And that just makes the kids in this film seem as if they are aimlessly meandering around without a clue as to what they're going to do until someone else saves them) but there is still enough here to make it an entertaining watch, especially as Bloodlust adds in a couple of gory murders and a few trips through the mad hunter's 'trophy room', which were apparently elements that were going to be in The Most Dangerous Game too but had been removed as much too horrific at that time.

There's also nothing to match the mounting tension, pulse-pounding chase scenes of Joel McCrea and Fay Wray getting pursued through swamps by Leslie Banks and his pack of hounds from The Most Dangerous Game (still one of the best put together action scenes in cinema 80 years on), but at least Bloodlust features quicksand swamps, hulking manservants, a completely paralytically drunk boat captain, a heroine who uses her inherited judo skills(!) to throw a pirate henchman (!!) into a coffin of quicklime, and the inevitable scene of having to remove bloodsucking leeches from a friend! (By the way I was sure that the 'nerdy' friend and his girlfriend were going to inevitably get killed at some point so we would be left with just our main couple, but aside from the leeches scene, they were fine! Ah, more innocent times!)

The MST3K guys are also really good during this film. One of the best parts about this method of riffing over the top of a film, apart from the obvious one of just making fun of otherwise rather dull films, is that sometimes there is some astute commentary on what's going on too, particularly in pointing up conventions and contrivances that filmmakers are falling back on, or really noticable deviations from standard filmmaking techniques.

And then there is The Skydivers, which for the film that seemed by far the least promising one on going in turned out to be really fun to watch as a film in its own right (if crazily edited at times!), and a film where the MST3K team were flying their highest too, with a constant stream of quips! (I especially liked comparing the swing dance scene that occurs at the airfield in the final act as akin to having just had a John Waters film break out, and that "Heroin has hit this town hard!"). I think I laughed out loud more through this film than all of the previous three! Even if I felt quite badly for the heroine and all of the gags made at the expense of her very 60s hairstyle! The film itself feels like a weird premonition of the portrait of thrill seekers in Point Break mixed with a bit of the insane jealous pranking antics of Carrie!
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Though I think the heroine got away quite easily with her boring husband being killed by a disgruntled ex-employee instead of by the new employee that she was getting romantically entangled with! She didn't end up having to make a choice at all, just endure until everyone else died!

I think the whole of The Skydivers could be encapsulated in this one quote during the first skydiving scene:
Quote:
"Did the actors do their own sky-diving?"
"No, the sky-divers did their own acting"

Plus this is the episode which features the Centron Film short "Why Study Industrial Arts?" at the beginning! (Why? Because it gives you life-skills of course! You might even get a job as an Industrial Arts teacher if you are lucky enough!)


Last edited by colinr0380 on Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 8:23 pm 
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Very glad you are doing this and I hope you continue! That was a great read.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2016 1:19 am 
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Yeah, this is an interesting project, and almost certainly a better way to move through the series than actual season order- the first season has a few gems but is by and large a drag, and frontloading it would make getting to the better stuff feel like work.

The first set is oddly devoid of classics, though The Skydivers comes reasonably close- Catalina Caper was as close as they ever got to doing a comedy (though The Incredible Melting Man is sort of one, they didn't know it was intentionally goofy) and there's a reason they didn't do it again; it's hard to bust on how stupid everything is in a comedy, and the plotting is even more half assed than a lot of the terrible monster movies and things.

I'm sure I've seen Bloodlust at least four times and I honestly can't remember a single thing about it- I keep getting it mixed up with Horrors of Spider Island, which is way weirder. I think it's got kind of a Scooby Doo vibe, corny teens running around from unimpressive adults? Anyway, the short on that one, the trip to the dairy farm, is fabulous, just dead on target white people doing things whitely that the show always nails.

The Creeping Terror is a fun one, but it also kind of blends in with the dozen or so similar movies- a monster that looks kitbashed out of an abandoned car irritates a small town authority and or kids until the movie ends. There are a couple that stand out, but this isn't one of them.

The Skydivers, though, I can remember without looking it up- there's a weird melancholy about it, like if someone took The Last Picture Show and made it abysmal, where somehow they're trying to sell skydiving as this high octane action spectacle, but it comes off as monotonous and depressing in a small town industry you're stuck in kind of way. To manage to make that when you were trying to make Only Angels Have Wings is honestly a hell of a thing, if not a good one.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:22 am 
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Location: Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire, UK
Thanks guys!

I kept thinking in Catalina Caper that riffing something that is either broad slapstick hijinks or kids dancing happily to musical acts is really impossible to do (though I loved that they pointed out the rather incongruous for the period skinhead amongst the group of coiffured kids near the end, who had been distracting me throughout earlier scenes of the film! At least someone else saw him in there!). It's like sitting down to try and make fun of Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach or something like that!

Plus Catalina Caper is in that beach party tradition of cool kids having to deal with their really uncool parents and other authority figures trying to break up and/or crash the party. So someone snorting with derision over scenes with jokes about girl troubles or people hilariously falling in the water can end up making the riffers also seem like total spoilsports daddy-o! The Monkees probably trod the line the best between embracing this genre and satirically subverting it at the same time. Speaking of The Monkees, I wonder if they made Catalina Caper seem rather old fashioned, or at least a few years behind the current trend, even at the time. Though this film is fine and watchable, its inoffensive to the point of blandly unmemorable! (Though what was that running gag with the guy with a harem of at least three women that are following him around and cuddling up to him all the time! That doesn't seem to ever get paid off with a 'foursome' scene or something happening to cause all the girls to simultaneously break up with him, or anything like that, so I presume he's just meant to be the really lucky guy that all the other guys are jealous of!)

I agree on Bloodlust matrix, it certainly fits in that Scooby-Doo style tradition too. You could trace a through line from this to something like Humongous. Though I was also left thinking that its taking a few cues from those House of Wax films too in the hunter rendering and posing his trophies (which of course immediately made me think of Carry On Screaming too!). I liked that the teens in Bloodlust were not that passive and kept making plans to run off (especially coming out of The Creeping Terror, which featured nothing but passive teens just sitting waiting for the monster to catch up to them!), but they still end up being saved more by pure luck than judgement! A fun watch but pales in comparison to the tightly wound plotting and characterisation of The Most Dangerous Game.

And I agree that the 'summer on Uncle Jim's farm' short before Bloodlust was fantastic! Particularly the idea from the riffing that the parents are ditching the kids and having arguments about whether to just drive straight past without picking them up again at the end of the holiday! ("Just throw their clothes at them and floor it") Or the way that the piece is emphasising all of the back-breaking hard work of chores that the kids have to do ("Weren't we just [happily] ringing a bell earlier?") before sitting down to one of the driest, least appetising looking meals I've ever seen (And I speak from experience, having just cooked a turkey into a dry husk! You'd think there would have at least been some gravy around on the farm's dinner table, as that's what saved my Christmas dinner!). But don't worry, there are all sorts of farm animals to molest, I mean cuddle (the girl cradling the cat: "It's dead"). I was sure that this was going to lead up to one of those whiplash tone changes when we see all the cute animals going off for slaughter, but that aspect is left out of this sunny view of farm-life!

The Skydivers was a surprisingly compelling watch, and I love the Last Picture Show and Only Angels Have Wings comparison. It is really melancholy (I suppose even skydiving companies have a 'two strikes and you are out' rule towards people dying from hitting the ground! Especially when the second one is the owner of the business!), and I thought it ended in a really nice low key and downbeat way. Even the wooden, droning dialogue from the husband sort of works in adding to a oppressive sense of a small town business venture falling apart from the inside, though through no real fault of the owners! And forget what the MST3K guys say, I thought the female lead's en vogue Jackie Kennedy-hairstyle made her look very pretty, even if I agree that the overalls were less than flattering to the posterior!


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:43 am 
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Re-release of volume 5 coming out on May 16th

The Touch Of Satan
Time Chasers
Merlin's Shop Of Mystical Wonders
Boggy Creek II


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:53 pm 
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Reboot trailer


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 3:14 pm 
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Going to keep this brief since there is a polite gag order on Kickstarter backers talking about the new episodes (which are available early to those who donated $85 or more to the project), but having dug into a few of them so far, I'm so pleased with the reboot. Despite some sort of shocking changes to the formula (mostly to do with visual style), the spirit of what made the original series so special is alive and well. I even found myself shedding a tear, not the first time I saw and heard the new intro music, but like the fourth or fifth time - it just all hit me at once that this thing that has been so important to me since I was a kid had been resurrected - and so lovingly, at that - by its original mastermind. Joel Hodgson has a lot to be proud of here, and I would be shocked if it isn't renewed by Netflix for a couple more seasons, at least. Some of the movie choices (which, again, I am asked not to discuss) are absolutely inspired, and they use really good widescreen transfers for most (if not all) of them, when available!

Will have more to say once the 14th comes and goes and these are viewable by the general public. If you've ever held a candle for this show, you should be very excited.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 3:21 pm 
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There are still VHS tapes in my attic of episodes from the original Comedy Channel run, so this is very good news indeed to hear from another longtime fan.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 3:47 pm 
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I'm trying my best to keep my expectations low- honestly, it's a lot easier if I go in expecting Arrested Development season 4 and get something wonderful than the other way around.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:09 pm 
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I watched the first episode and it's a very faithful, quite funny revival. Servo's voice took getting used to and is a pretty poor substitute for Murphy. Still the jokes are well done and I'd say on par with the original. As someone a bit too young to catch a good deal of the original run's references, especially the earliest episodes, it's nice to finally understand every quip!


Last edited by Murdoch on Sun Apr 16, 2017 4:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:43 pm 
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I guess I’ll have to get used to the fact that the writers’ room and cast are no longer dominated by upper-Midwesterners. This was made most clear when they missed the opportunity to do a “duck, duck, gray duck" reference in the first episode. Gonna miss the Tommy Bartlett jokes.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:28 am 
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Werewolf by Night wrote:
I guess I’ll have to get used to the fact that the writers’ room and cast are no longer dominated by upper-Midwesterners. This was made most clear when they missed the opportunity to do a “duck, duck, gray duck" reference in the first episode. Gonna miss the Tommy Bartlett jokes.

Yeah, the sort of anarchist, cloistered MN spirit is the most glaring absence from the show, and I also think it was Hodgson's wisest decision. You just don't capture lightning in a bottle twice, and if he tried to, this could've been an utter disaster. My only other complaint, if we're talking negatives, is that I don't love the act breaks with Oswalt catching us up on the film and the whole "you're watching Mystery Science Theater on Moon 13" or whatever the network read is. The little groovy bit of theme that'd play over the MST3K logo was the perfect way to bifurcate episodes without being too intrusive, [as I mentioned] the music was a modest little 5 second treat, and I can't say the new act break captures any of that.

Favorite episodes so far?

I haven't seen them all, but Cry Wilderness has ascended to the short list of my favorite MST3K episodes ever. Even if there's just one that can be classified that way out of this season, that's a success to me, and means that the show is in very good hands just by being capable of sheer greatness. Hopefully they can find some more of those odd direct-to-video bargain bin films (like the ones that would pop up in the 9th and 10th seasons) for the inevitable 12th season - I like old failed blockbusters and monster movies as much as anyone, but MST3K is at its most transcendent in that The Final Sacrifice/Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders/Pod People universe for me.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:56 pm 
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Volume 6 re-release announced

Teenagers From Outer Space
Attack Of The Giant Leeches
Gunslinger
Mr. B's Lost Shorts


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 6:58 pm 
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Quote:
An update from Shout! Factory about MST3K Volume XXXIX and future DVD releases:

The set will be available Nov. 21, 2017, and available for pre-order on the Shout! Factory website and Amazon later this week.

It will be a four-disc set, here are the titles:
The Amazing Transparent Man
Girls Town
Diabolik
“Satellite Dishes”

The 4th disc, called “Satellite Dishes” is a collection of the host segments from episodes from the remaining unreleased episodes. They are:
Ep #201 Rocketship X-M
Ep #212 Godzilla Vs. Megalon
Ep #213 Godzilla Vs. The Sea Monster
Ep #309 The Amazing Colossal Man
Ep #311 It Conquered the World
Ep #416 Fire Maidens from Outer Space
Ep #418 The Eye Creatures
Ep #807 Terror from the Year 5000
Ep #809 I Was A Teenage Werewolf
Ep #905 The Deadly Bees
Ep #906 The Space Children
Ep #913 Quest of the Delta Knights

Despite our best efforts to include the remaining unreleased episodes, due to licensing issues, it is very likely that Volume 39 will be the last collection of never-before-released episodes, and that these remaining episodes may never get a legitimate release. With this in mind, we decided the next best option was to release the remaining host segments by themselves.

Particularly sad about The Deadly Bees, as it's one of my favorite unheralded Mike era episodes (mostly because it was never released in DVD or streaming formats, but also because the movie is actually pretty darn good, but just riffable enough to be compulsively watchable on both fronts). Also sad to know that it's been made official that The Amazing Colossal Man will never see any kind of disc reissue of the old Rhino VHS.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:13 pm 
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Well that's disappointing. I suppose one can find the missing episodes easily enough though.

I can understand why the Godzilla movies might never see the light of day again, but what are the issues holding up the other films?

Edit

I found this list, which rather helpfully explains the issues per the remaining episodes. Looks like the problems are down to Olive (Paramount) and Susan Hart (+whatever is going on with Quest of the Delta Knights). I'm sure Shout throwing in enough money would resolve the remaining episodes. Glad they gave us this to tide us over, but hope they don't throw in the towel.

As a tangnet: it would be great though if Elvira did the same concept - of just releasing the host segments on DVD, as I'm sure 95% of those episodes won't ever be released.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:19 pm 
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Shout! did a hell of a lot more than Rhino was willing to do to keep this series flourishing - the amount of sets they've released is staggering, and there were some films that were expected to never see the light of day. Thinking there really was a scenario where the remaining films just weren't anywhere approaching profitable if they had to pay for rights, or there was a "not at any cost" roadblock.

Now we just need to see how much longer these stay in print.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:50 pm 
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Well, shit. At least they got Diabolik, both because it's a great episode and because it's so important to the series. I wonder if they've had that for a while, and were saving it for a last set?

I wonder too if this means the promised set of KTMA host segments will never happen


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:51 pm 
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According to Joel Hodgson, Netflix only has until the end of this month to decide whether they'll be renewing or cancelling MST3K.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:52 pm 
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I'd be more hopeful that someone new would pick it up if Seeso hadn't just died


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:55 pm 
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Apparently he's also stated throughout the MST3K live shows that the reboot would "probably" be renewed by Netflix and he's optimistic/talks are still ongoing, so I suppose we'll see. Not sure what Netflix has to lose, it's a relatively inexpensive little thing that gets them more press than a lot of the bigger budget flops they've seen die on the vine.


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