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A Love Note to Mystery Science Theater 3000, on The Occasion of Its 30th Birthday | #SciFiSunday

Check out this beautiful piece from Tor.com’s Leah Schnelbach in celebration of MST3K on its 30th birthday.

Thirty years ago, on November 24, 1988, Mystery Science Theater 3000 premiered on KTMA, a cable access channel in Minneapolis. This very Thanksgiving is the show’s anniversary. It’s out of college by now (probably), maybe trying to buy a home, or start a family. It bristles when Cheers calls it a millennial—it’s always felt like an old soul, with the references to Get Christie Love and Charlie McCarthy, and it gets frustrated when other shows consider it shallow. It’s not just a reference factory, after all. There’s real depth and heart here, if you know how to pay attention.

I’d been hearing about Mystery Science Theater 3000 for a few months. At the time, I wanted to be a movie director, and I read a lot of film and entertainment magazines, and a lot of people kept mentioning this show with an odd name in their interviews. But our cable package didn’t have the channel that aired it, which was either Ha! or the Comedy Channel, or maybe Comedy Central? The channels had merged or changed names, I wasn’t sure which. (If you want to know exactly what happened there, more about the show’s storied history is available here.)

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