What are your comfort-food episodes?

They may not stand out as your FAVORITE episodes, but what are those episodes you can just watch any time any day? The ones you’ve seen a million times and would happily watch a million more. The ones you can nestle down with when you’re home with the flu, or have had a really lousy day?

Mine:
I Accuse My Parents - I just love watching the hapless Jimmy bungle his way in and out of the mob.

Giant Gila Monster - I love anything with giant creatures, and Gila Monster has a wonderful goofy quality to it that I can watch any day.

Merlin’s Shop of Mystical Wonders - Ernest Borgnine tells horrible stories to his grandson. What’s not to like?

Star Crash - The only thing I like more than giant monsters are failed Star Wars wannabes. And hey! Stella Star!

What are yours?

24 Likes

Excellent thread topic @Pak-Man!

Overdrawn At The Memory Bank is both my favorite and comfort food - it has the cheesy PBS sci-fi vibe that you just can’t get anywhere else!

Robot Holocaust is just hilariously bad in such an earnest way that I can watch it anytime to get a laugh. Don’t anger the Pork Bun!

Mitchell is the ultimate Joe Don Baker doughy cop “action” flick and the first MST3K episode I ever saw, so nostalgic.

Quest of the Delta Knights is an enjoyable absurdist romp through a Renn Faire with T, Leonardo, and Richard Kind. So glad this is now streaming.

In more recent episodes, Wizards of the Lost Kingdom with your pal Crabby is an easy watch. I’ve always enjoyed the fantasy genre and this movie really butchers that in a touching, low budget way.

17 Likes

I definitely have a reserve of these as well. Here are some of my picks:

The Crawling Eye - I just love claustrophobic movies like this.

Tormented - Hauntings on an island with a lighthouse, pure heaven.

It Conquered The World - Constant laughs from this one, both from the riffing and the film itself. Plus, Beverly Garland!

Operation Double 007 - It’s honestly no worse than a number of actual Bond films, and is a whirlwind of globe-hopping spy fun.

14 Likes

Ooooh, good question…

Zombie Nightmare - just such a cheesy horror film filled with so much 80’s goodness. I love it.

Werewolf - a classic. The riffs and oddness is a balm for my soul

Any of the Russo/Finnish productions - these are just fascinating movies with a lot of heart and creativity. The riffs make them funny, but the visuals are interesting enough that I could watch them by themselves.

14 Likes

I often reach for the spirit of music, Mr. B Natural, and other shorts like The Chicken of Tomorrow, A Date with Your Family, The Home Economics Story, and any of the love or hygiene shorts.

For movies, we go with Giant Spider Invasion, The Thing the Couldn’t Die, Quest of the Delta Knights, Riding with Death, and Mac & Me.

ETA: Overdrawn at the Memory Bank has that delightful “public dollars at work!” coziness about it as well.

14 Likes

A lot of the classic bests are in my list, like Werewolf, Giant Spider Invasion, Space Mutiny, but I’ve also got a soft spot for the old black and white ones like Killer Shrews, Attack of the Giant Leeches, and Bride of the Monster.

10 Likes

I love this topic!

Danger!! Death Ray! — I love everything about this episode: razor-sharp riffs, funny host segments, and a movie that’s the right kind of cheese. (In fact, Bart Fargo inspired a trilogy of songs I wrote for my surf band.)

Project Moonbase — this is everything great and everything terrible about Robert Heinlein’s writing in one convenient package. I love the model work and goofy costumes. It’s one of the Season 1 episodes where the guys seem to be in a riffing groove.

Star Crash — another goofy space movie where Jonah and the Bots don’t miss a beat. Plus, the UFO song and Stella Star!

Honorable Mentions to Reptilicus, First Spaceship on Venus, and Operation Kid Brother. Oh, and The Loves of Hercules.

This list will probably change tomorrow.

11 Likes

Riding With Death or Master Ninja 1 and 2 - As a successful transient, I find i like the “van-bro” episodes a lot.

Edit: i understand that ‘Riding With Death’ doesnt technically have a van, but thats more of a footnote if you’ve watched it.

11 Likes

There are two vans at the end of the episode ERRRR movie. I think that counts.

6 Likes

Good topic!

Mine are:

Overdrawn at the Memory Bank
Beginning of the End
Avalanche
Future War
Werewolf
The Beast of Yucca Flats
At the Earth’s Core
The Land That Time Forgot

…Santo in the Treasure of Dracula is on a trajectory to get there, too.

It’s not that all of these are the funniest, but they’re definitely the coziest. There’s something so comforting about black and white, stop motion, forced perspective, sleepy dubs, PBS, models getting smashed, and practical makeup effects.

15 Likes

Another on my list as well. A cozy film for under the fleece on a cold day.

9 Likes

Zombie Nightmare - was the first ep I saw
Santa Claus Conquers The Martians
Space Mutiny
Manos
Touch Of Satan
Parts: The Clonus Horror

10 Likes

The Day the Earth Froze
Teenagers from Outer Space
The Beginning of the End
Overdrawn at the Memory Bank
Reptilicus
Pod People
Cave Dwellers

11 Likes

Oh man where to begin!

Moon Zero Two this movie has gotten me through some tough times

Radar Secret Service makes me laugh every time

Crash of Moons and Manhunt in Space both great movies to relax with

Space Mutiny for when I need belly laughs

Operation Kid Brother because we all need a little not-007 in our lives

And last but certainly not least Danger! Death Ray this movie+riffs gets me every time

11 Likes

This really is a great topic, ain’t it?

Space Travelers isn’t close to being my favorite episode, but it was among the first episodes that I discovered. It’s laidback and relaxing, and I love seeing Gene Hackman and Gregory Peck do their thing.

Gunslinger is another episode you can just get lost in while watching. While not a top-tier episode in my book, it’s perfect for lounging and letting it all wash over ya.

The Beast of Hollow Mountain has this feel to it that’s unlike any MST3K episode, even in being a Western. There’s a certain comfort and ease to that, and the host segments add to that easygoing charm (even with Jonah and the Mads being freaked out by the Bots’ festival antics).

THE SPY MOVIES! If Secret Agent Super Dragon or Operation Double 007 or Danger!! Death Ray are playing on Twitch/Pluto, I’m parking myself there and watching them. Even with all the action and intrigue, they feel like a cozy reminder of why MST3K is so gold like that. (I like Agent for H.A.R.M., but I wouldn’t necessarily consider that a comfort-food episode with how hard it can go.)

The Unearthly is a far cry from my best of the best of the best MST3K picks, but comfort-wise? I love it to no end. Two wonderfully goofy shorts, an odd but absorbing movie, and a gradual riff pace that goes gently but entertainingly at later hours? Wonderful.

Catalina Caper is as easygoing as they get! Early in Season 2, the gang was still finding its footing with riffing and writing, and while we haven’t quite reached the series’s dizzying heights just yet, it’s nevertheless a joy to watch. A lighthearted movie with jokes to go on top of all the musical hijinx? Love it.

The Screaming Skull isn’t the tops of Season 9, but I love to revisit that for the Gumby short and all the skull-related hilarity and whatever’s going on with Mickey. Yeah, our leading lady’s character isn’t having a great time of it all, but for me? I can sit back, relax, and enjoy this weird little movie and the fun riffs.

The Phantom Planet is another one that doesn’t quite rise to the zenith of Season 9, but that movie has such a calming, quiet atmosphere about it that I love. I really get into the movie, and having jokes go along with that? Gotta dig that! And Mike playing the water glasses is such a nice moment, that.

11 Likes

And then there are the Russo-Finnish episodes, which represent the crossroads of comforting relaxation and superlative humor.

9 Likes

Also, I could see Santo in the Treasure of Dracula joining those ranks in time.

10 Likes

You forgot Laserblast!

7 Likes

Night of the Blood Beast

Wild Rebels

The Screaming Skull ( first time I saw it was in a blizzard)

This Island Earth ( MST3K the movie)

Hobgoblins

Definitely comfort food worthy!

10 Likes

And I have to throw in a shout for The Amazing Colossal Man, The Giant Gila Monster, Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, Hercules Unchained, and Teenagers from Outer Space, which were among the first episodes I discovered, thanks to the Mystery Science Theater Hour.

And those movies/episodes kinda function similarly in how they’re easy to watch, packed with fun riffs, and most important to this question, just plain comforting.

6 Likes