Mystery Science Theatre 3000 Is Coming Back Big Time, Thanks To Kickstarter

The internet owes an awful lot to the Mystery Science Theatre 3000 series, and now it’s giving back. A lot, if the last 24 hours are any judge.

Joel Hodgson must be feeling pretty good right now. He’s just launched a Kickstarter for another 12 episode-long series of the legendary Mystery Science Theatre 3000 show, and the internet has responded very, very warmly indeed.

There’s 30 days left on the campaign. The goal’s a healthy US$2 million ($2,801,787), a solid amount of money to ask for on Kickstarter. But Hodgson should be in no doubt about whether he’s going to get it, since the total funding is already past US$1,177,688 ($1,649,815).

It makes sense, given so much of what passes for humour on the internet these days is riffing over audio or commentary, the style that MST3K popularised. And that’s what the Kickstarter is directly plugging into too. “In a world where riffing has become as common as our national pastime, baseball, it makes sense: like baseball, everyone knows how to play, but sometimes it feels good to just sit back and watch the original movie riffing team take a whack at it. And if we came back, imagine all the riffs we could make about things like Uber or Cards Against Humanity,” the campaign says.

Six people have already stumped up US$7,500 or more for the tier that lets you become a producer, while one shelled out more than US$15,000 to get the Tom Servo and Crow T. Robot puppets that will be used in filming of the show.

“If we want a lot more MST3K, we need to work together to prove that there’s still an audience out there that wants MST3K – and that this isn’t all some pitiable delusion – so that we can find a network or online platform who will agree to pick up the show and keep it going … hopefully for another 200+ episodes,” Joel Hodgson wrote.

You can read the full pitch and find out more on the Kickstarter page. The campaign probably won’t track into the tens of millions like Kicktraq suggests — the rate of funding tails off substantially for crowdfunding campaigns in the middle half — but it seems likely that the goal of US$2 million will be doubled, or possibly tripled, before the 30 days is up.

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