The Heckles Of ‘MST3K’ Return April 14

By February 23, 2017

A kid born the last time a new episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 aired would actually be ready to officially enter adulthood. Yet, she’ll now have a chance to enjoy the very show her parents did as Netflix readies the return of the snarky bad-movie heckling film that defined a generation.

The subscription streaming service released the first cast photo of the new show this week with new host Jonah Ray, and a group of some of the genre’s biggest names like Patton Oswalt and Felicia Day around him. Netflix also released another juicy tidbit – MST3K returns April 14.

The group, led by original show creator Joel Hodgson, filmed 14 episodes including a Christmas special, using nearly $5.8 million raised through a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign where he was only seeking $2 million.

Ray is a Hawaiian-born comedy writer and actor whose work includes the Comedy Central series TripTank as well as the satirical animated show SuperNews that aired on the former cable channel owned by Vice President Al Gore, Current TV.

He’ll be joined by the two robots that essentially have been a part of MST3K since the beginning, Crow T. Robot and Tom Servo. However, they will have new voices in the form of Hampton Yount and Baron Vaughn. Yount is a writer and comedian probably best known for a short stint writing for The Eric Andre Show on Adult Swim.

Vaughn is one of the stars of another Netflix original, Grace and Frankie, where he plays the adopted son Nwabudike Bergstein. He’s also appeared in TripTankBoJack Horseman and – a tad out of character – Cloverfield in 2008.

Day and Oswalt will play the new mad scientists, both bringing impressive resumes to the show. Day, of course, is the creator and star of the popular web series The Guild, and has made appearances in other popular geek productions like Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along BlogEureka and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Oswalt, who won an Emmy last year for writing Patton Oswalt: Talking for Clapping, has been in just about everything, it seems. That includes Agents of SHIELD on ABC, Veep on HBO, Archer on Comedy Central, Justified on FX, and even the Battlestar Galactica spin-off Caprica for Syfy.

Oswalt also is the narrator for The Goldbergs, now in its fourth season on ABC.

Mystery Science Theater 3000 debuted as a cable access show in Minneapolis in 1988, before finding a home on a very new and growing Comedy Central. The series stayed there until 1997 where it then moved to the former Sci-Fi Channel, before finally ending its run in 1999.

Hodgson hosted the show until 1993 when he was replaced by Michael J. Nelson. Since leaving MST3K, Nelson has taken on his own version of movie heckling through his company RiffTrax, which includes two of the former voices for Crow and Servo, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett.

The fundraising campaign, which raised money from more than 48,000 donors chipping in an average of $120 each, also allowed Hodgson to acquire the rights to the series from former executive producer Jim Mallon and Best Brains.

The campaign became the largest in Kickstarter history when it comes to television and film projects, surpassing the Veronica Mars campaign in 2013.

The movies covered by the new show have yet to be released, but producers have promised those selected will be newer than what the show is known for in the past, with maybe one from the 1950s or 1960s.

Mystery Science Theater 3000 comes to Netflix on April 14.

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Michael Hinman

Michael Hinman

Managing Editor at GeekNation
Michael began what has become nearly 19 years of entertainment reporting as the founder of SyFy Portal, which would become Airlock Alpha after he sold the SyFy brand to NBC Universal. He's based out of New York City where he is the editor of a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in the Bronx.