Science fiction fans will always have reasons to dislike the Syfy network, from its insistence on spewing out implausible creature features to avoiding the genre altogether with shows about ghost hunters and other paranormal non-realities. Perhaps their most horrific crime against humanity was cancelling the hilarious cult series Mystery Science Theater 3000 after only three seasons. It’s astounding that MST3K hasn’t produced new episodes since 1999, but former stars Mike Nelson, Bill Corbett, and Kevin Murphy have kept busy over the years with their exceedingly popular RiffTrax brand of custom film commentaries. The comedy gods must be smiling down upon us since the team is once again heading to television starting April 1.
Wait, does that mean this is all a big April Fool’s prank? Hopefully not, as I would blow my servos if that were the case. RiffTrax will bring its uniquely off-kilter comedy to National Geographic for three hour-long episodes for a special called Total Riff Off. During the run they will use classic clips from National Geographic shows as the source of their chides and chortles. Will we see a lion eating a gazelle? Perhaps two hippos trying to get it on? We do know they’ll be mantis shrimp, leaf-nosed bats, and koalas, according to Today.
Here’s something interesting, though. NatGeo is owned not only by the National Geographic Society but by 21st Century Fox. Assuming these specials are a ratings bonanza, it’s theoretically possible we might see these guys get a more permanent residence somewhere, where they can shit on Fox movies. My fingers are crossed for X-Men: The Last Stand. I have a lot to learn about the difference between wishes and reality.
Nelson launched RiffTrax back in 2006, later bringing in Corbett and Murphy, who were also a part of The Film Crew. With occasional guests, the guys have skewered untold numbers of films, both the barely seen (like MST3K was known for) and modern blockbusters, such as the Batman, Terminator, and Transformers franchises. And not only can you purchase any of these off of their website, but you can also see them live, as they’ve recently started taking their commentaries on the road a little more often.
You say you really, really need to hear what these guys have to say about the podracing scene from The Phantom Menace? Look no more.
You say that’s not enough, and you think they should also give James Cameron’s Avatar the old jokey-joke? Here you go. Now don’t forget to tune in on Tuesday, April 1, at 8 p.m. EST.