What is your “go to” episode? The one you reach for when you really need a good laugh?

What’s the MST3K episode that you watch when you really are needing a reliable dose of laughter? The episode, or episodes, that really “delivers,” over and over?

The title that comes to mind that always gets me cracking up, even when things are looking pretty bleak, is “The Incredible Melting Man.” It’s so crammed with great riffs and observations- Mike and the Bots are in top form, and there’s the sub-plot of “Earth Vs. Soup” and its depiction of Hollywood shallowness. This episode inspires the kind of laughter where it starts to hurt, as I’m laughing through it pretty much non-stop.

I remember when the movie came out. I was a kid, a tomboy who loved Godzilla, and all things science fiction. My buddies at school were going to see the Incredible Melting Man, and reporting gleefully about how disgusting (in a fun way) it was. I, however, was forbidden to see it. So, though it is puerile, part of my enjoyment of this film is that I can watch it… whenever I feel like it.

If I’m feeling down, I put on Melting Man, and I am soon dissolving in helpless laughter. This movie is so terrible! It is non-stop RIDICULOUS, every step of the way. The process of the creation of the Melting Man is totally ridiculous, the nurse running inexplicably through a very long warehouse of some kind is ridiculous (why is she suddenly there?) There is one other inexplicably set in a warehouse scene, like the one where Dr. Ted Nelson joylessly shares the news of his wife’s pregnancy, as he and his companion sail along on some kind of— warehouse conveyance thing. Huh? “When do you think the people that work here are coming back?”

The dynamic between Ted Nelson and his wife just kills me. It’s just so bizarre. The crackers scene- oh man… It makes me wonder- why this dynamic? These two married people seem to barely tolerate each other. They must have met at an EST camp seminar in Big Sur, on the afternoon where everybody proudly practiced honing their ability to never be wrong, above the booming Pacific. The minutia of their lives is proudly paraded across the screen, and Mike and the Bots serve up a feast of riffs on it all (“STEVE had CRACKERS.”) And Ted Nelson is the Melting Man’s friend? He doesn’t appear to be genuinely concerned about the poor guy, who is “only a little” radioactive. In fact, he seems annoyed that the growly, turkey-leg eating General constantly checks on him to ensure he’s keeping track of Mr. Melt.

The whole movie is so Seventies, which I love. The awful decor, the bad bell-bottomed leisure suits, the “Denim Theater” mom, the giant woven moth wall hanging. Everybody appears to be on something, and that’s before the doctor injects his pregnant wife so the baby can discover “the joys of goofballs.” The wife’s creepy laughing freak out over the cat somehow opening the refrigerator door, grabbing the milk bottle, and throwing the bottle on the floor- this strange response of hers is pre-injection. As with other characters, the milk scene seems designed to make her less likable. Maybe that’s the point. Because pretty much EVERYBODY seems to become more and more unlikable as the movie churns on.

More ridiculousness: the sequence with the stoned couple coming home to their double-wide, where an absurd amount of screen time is devoted to the young woman’s community theater primal screaming. (Maybe the screaming actress had blackmail material on the casting director?) The “Welcome Back, Kotter” references- the Cat Stevens photographer- and that’s Rainbeaux Smith, biting her nails in the back of the car in the off-screen mauling scene. She also turned in a good-natured performance as the rather clueless Kathy in another one of my favorite episodes, “Laserblast.” (I never knew she sang backup vocals on a couple of Joan Jett’s albums.)

And oh man- the sequence with the old people. This particular ridiculousness is so funny. It’s so surreal! Tom’s “did they switch reels on us?” and Crow’s “What is HAPPENING?!!” sums it up. The thought of those two rather sweet old folks bringing Ted and his wife a “rubber novelty” as a gift-! And yeah- old people are always pulling over in the moonlight to steal lemons. Ridiculous.

After awhile, it starts to seem as if the “sanest” character in the film is the slightly radioactive guy who is staggering around melting, parts of him dropping off, who is randomly murdering people. At least he was exposed to a force that MADE him that awful. What’s everyone else’s excuse?

Crow’s bemused and disgusted “He just threw himself up!” and the title character being scraped off of the asphalt and dropped into a garbage can- what a classically bad way to end a movie. It was a very moist film, to be sure.

Though it’s hard to choose, another never fails episode is “Gamera vs. Guiron” (Cornjob, Duluth-accented space babes, 50 year old child, “Hello!” “Thank you.” “Hello?” “Thank you!”), ”Laserblast” and “Prince of Space” and “Eegah”- and— I guess there are a lot of “sure fire” episodes.

For a Film Crew episode, it’s “Hollywood After Dark.” Rue McClanahan stripping is pure John Waters weirdness. Cinematic Titanic- “The Alien Factor” is tied with “East Meets Watts.” For Rifftrax it might be “Ice Cream Bunny;” also “A Talking Cat!?!” is pretty great. I haven’t seen all the episodes of the “new” MST3K, but I want to, as I really like the new show. If I had to pick a go-to among episodes I have seen, it would be “Reptilicus,” though “At the Earth’s Core” is also pretty great. I can’t wait to see more new episodes. My budget won’t allow it right now, but if I could, I would immediately zoom over to the Gizmoplex, and buy everything I could get my eyeballs on.

Anyway- what’s an episode that you put on when you need to laugh a lot- and fast? :slight_smile:


For me it’s Operation Double 007. The scope, the music, the actors, the riffs, all are a perfect blend of comfort food. Interestingly enough, the two you mention (Melting Man and Gamera vs Guiron) are also frequent reaches for me. Rounding out the list are Tormented and Robot Monster, for when I want comfort tinged with despair.


Inevitably I return to Space Mutiny. The names, the sheer cheesiness of the sets and costumes, plus the ridiculous plot… it all just makes for great viewing and re-viewing. But lately I’ve been adding Reptilicus to the list; while it is a little frenetic with the riffs, the overall appeal of being the first episode of the returned series, plus Every Country Has a Monster being such a banger, makes it incredibly amusing to me and I laugh every time.


There are about 100 of em, so hard to say. But of the older ones: Laserblast (a dose of Deezen), Future War (“AND YOU THREW IT ALL AWAY!!”), Boggy Creek II (“Where’s the money you son of a bitch!!”, “Can I borrow a cup of shirt?”), Time Chasers (RT (“JK LOL!”) or MST version), Mitchell (a film that makes me need a shower after watching; it’s THAT kind of 70’s filth), and so many others.

EVERY episode from Netflix seasons and every season 13 episode so far.

But after writing this, I realize I’ve gone back to watch Emily and the bots doing Eddie Con and dropping Mother Crabber, so currently, that’s my newest GO TO episode!

Edit: Also Killer Fish in season 12 has one of my favorite MST songs, the one under the water, whatever its called :slight_smile:


Pod People, Cave Dwellers, and the Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies. The last makes me chuckle just reading the title.


x2. After every major heartbreak in my life, when I’m inaugurating a new TV or home, when I’m introducing someone new to the show… I put my faith in Blast Hardcheese.

My name is in the credits of Dr. Mordrid, though, and it’s taking on a sort of cozy bedroom slippers quality for me as a result. Roll Fizzlebeef might have to look out for Poncy Powernecklace.


I have a few in different categories, because sometimes you need the warm, fuzzy Joel blanket, sometimes you need the kids-gloves-off Mike blanket, and sometimes you need something new.

Joel: I Accuse My Parents, Eegah, Pod People
Mike: Jack Frost, Prince of Space, Angel’s Revenge
Jonah: Mac and Me, Cry Wilderness, Carnival Magic, Starcrash (Wow. Didn’t realize how many Jonah riffs have become indispensable to me!)
Emily: Beyond Atlantis (Probably also Doctor Mordrid, but I need to give it a few more viewings to be sure. So- you know- any given Emily episode so far.)


The Fugitive Alien vault pick this month was kinda like a warm blanket when I rewatched it the other day. I forgot how much I used to watch that ep.


Don’t make me choose! Don’t make me choose!

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When I’m feeling down, I usually reach for the spirit. Mr. B Natural, that is.

I also turn to the mellowness of Riding With Death to cheer me up. I can look at Buffalo Bill and be glad I’m not walking around going, “Vrahoo!”

I also love The Thing That Couldn’t Die, Jack Frost, The Final Sacrifice, Quest of the Delta Knights, Soultaker, and Overdrawn at the Memory Bank as other pick-me-ups.


Master Ninja 1 and 2 and Kitten With A Whip are my all-timers. They always put me in a good mood, such perfect comedy. Lately I’ve been warming up to Fugitive Alien 2 more.
My ultimate comfort episode is Catalina Caper. Warm and cozy.


The Day the Earth Froze

It was my favorite in 1993, it’s my favorite now. There are others that approach the throne (Operation Double 007, The Thing That Wouldn’t Die, I Accuse My Parents) but they never actually take a seat. If I were stranded on a desert island with only one (and a way to watch it, made out of coconuts I’m guessing) then I would want it to have as much sampo in it as possible.


In general, any of the stitched-together episode “movies”. I think it’s because of their brisk pace and simplistic plots (since they were originally intended for TV).


My go-to is Danger!! Death Ray but Moon Zero Two got me through a lot of dark times


I like Werewolf for that. The movie itself is just so goofy to begin with. I especially like how they have a whole scene explaining that a skin-walker is not the same as a Hollywood werewolf then completely disregard that by making the skin-walkers Hollywood werewolves. I feel like there’s a lot of music riffs in this one and I sing along during the end credits. I know why Yuri’s hair is different as the movie goes on but it’s so distracting and funny. I laughed myself to tears the first time Paul gets up and turns off the dang soundtrack. I like that one of the native workers at the dig, Tommy, is Canadian and that “ya hoser” riff when his accent comes in strong is hilarious (the “Canadian raising” in my accent is still not gone after over a decade in the States so I feel called out a bit). Sam the Keeper, and the guy who plays him, is an interesting character and I’m not sure how much acting is going on. He says the other F word and Mike says he suddenly misses his dad. Wow. I like the Cats werewolf makeup but these two as a werewolf couple give me the same vibes as Jody and Melissa in The Touch of Satan– they’re going to drift apart after two weeks. Joe Estevez seems like a really good guy and comparing him to a rough grouse and Winnie the Pooh is adorable and funny at the same time.

So yeah, it’s a goofy movie with likeable actors doing their best while being riffed relentlessly and wrapping it up with the end credits medley makes for a great episode that gets me laughing every time I see it, no matter how crappy I feel when I start watching it.


I’ll never read Jane Eyre again without picturing him as Mrs. Fairfax.


Danger !! Death Ray, Touch of Satan or Werewolf.


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Y’all heard me jawbone on long enough to know that my favorite episode of all time is Jack Frost, but I don’t play that very often. I only haul that out for special occasions, so I can’t really call that a go-to episode.

There’s a whole bunch of episodes on the MST3K 24/7 channels that I’m always happy to see.

And really, I’m happy to see ANY episode of MST3K. But that’s not answering the question.

I’ll go with Mitchell. I’ve played that to death since I got the Rhino VHS tape eons ago, and I’ll continue to play that to death on the streaming channels. Just a powerhouse of an episode.

If The Final Sacrifice were more readily accessible, I’d imagine I’d make good use of that, too.


There are many but Giant Spider Invasion is one I go back to that is sure to make me laugh no matter what mood I’m in.