Oh, Rifftrax, thank you

For us nerds, there was a Holy Grail of TV shows outside of Monty Python — and it was called “Mystery Science Theater 3000.” If you’ve never seen it, basically it was a couple of guys watching really cheesy movies and busting on them. The humor was sometimes harsh, sometimes subtle, sometimes really obscure and sometimes a complete flop … but regardless, I know I LOVED it. My dad and I had a routine of having breakfast, camping out on the couch and watching MST3K every Sunday when it was on Comedy Central. When I was in college, he would tape a bunch of the shows and mail them to me for Christmas, and it was awesome . In fact, one of my friends even had an MST3K wedding. Oh, I am so sad I missed that….

Buy their stuff!

Support Rifftrax, Capitalist dogs!

But after 10 seasons, it had its share of ups and downs. It changed hosts. And then, what felt like all too soon … it was over.

And we were left with a void in our lives.

Now, I heard that they were on a new project called Rifftrax. A former coworker was really excited to tell me that they were up and running again. However, I have to admit, I never really looked into it because

  1. I’m lazy
  2. I’m lazy
  3. I’m really, really, really, golly whizzbang frickin’ lazy

So, last night I got together with some friends, and we went to see the encore presentation of “Rifftrax: Plan 9 from Outer Space.” By “Encore presentation,” they meant “We’re repeating the live broadcast from August.”

And I laughed. I laughed really hard. Almost to the point where I had tears in my eyes. It was great to have the boys back again. And it seemed to be better than MST3K, as it was just the movie and their ripping on it. No stopping for commercials — and yes, it does make a HUGE difference.

Since I reverted to a daylight schedule on the last couple days of my vacation, I decided to check out the Web site this morning.

Oh. My. God.

They’re doing TONS of movies now. And they have gone mainstream. Star Wars. Star Trek. Indiana Jones. Matrix. SAW. Sixth Sense. Roadhouse. Dirty Dancing. Dark Knight. They even hit the Star Wars Christmas Special from 1978. And another cool aspect: They’re really not as limited in their commentary as they had to be in the past — but they’re still pretty family friendly (well, at least they were on “Plan 9” — I’ll have to let you know about the others later).

The only thing now is that you have to sync up their commentary with your copy of the movie (whether you bought or rented the original), which I hear can be a pain. But you know, that could be a labor of love. I plan on buying a couple rifftrax for movies I already have, and seeing how difficult it is.

As winter looms, it looks like I’ll have another geek project to keep my time occupied.

Oh, and Rifftrax? Thank you. Thank you a ton.

3 Responses to “Oh, Rifftrax, thank you”

  1. October 9, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    The synching-up process is made ridiculously easy: every ten minutes or so a little voice says a line of dialog along with a character in the movie. It allows you to know if you’re synched up or whether you need to pause the movie or the track for a second. It works great.
    Also, be aware they they also do video-on-demand titles where the riffing is included with the movie.
    Have fun!
    (Also, be aware that most of the rest of the MST3K crew are doing something called Cinematic Titanic. Check it out at cinematictitanic.com.

  2. October 10, 2009 at 6:58 am

    I will def be checking this out.

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