What's your "go-to" MST3K genre these days, and how has it changed through the years?

I was thinking about this question because things that used to make me laugh no longer do, and maybe vice versa. When I first discovered the show in the early 90s, my first episodes were Cave Dwellers and Crash of the Moons, but I thought the Gameras were the best thing ever, and by extension other kaiju and dubbed Japanese episodes.

A few years later, I was bored of that style but really dug the truly awful 50s/60s sci-fi episodes – Creeping Terror, Beginning of the End, Monster A Go-Go…the one with the giant carrot monster whose name escapes me right now.

But that has changed again, and today my sweet spot of MST3K seems to be riffs on cheesy 80s films with kids – Mac and Me, Munchie, Cry Wilderness, the first Wizards movie – all Jonah episodes I now realise, but Pod People and Final Sacrifice fit in there for me.

And I never really could get into the Mexican wrestling episodes, the psychological movies, the 70s cop films (sorry, Mitchell). And the kaiju mostly bore me.

What about you? What’s your go-to style these days and how has it changed?

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Mine have definitely changed. I discovered the show during Mike’s run when MST3K was on the Sci-Fi Channel (now Syfy), so the hosted movies were expected to fall into the sci-fi genre. It wasn’t until years later that I was able to catch up on the Joel episodes, and I realized that the format worked well for lots of different kinds of movies… even though it took me a while to get used to it.

More recently, it feels like seasons are built purposely to sample from different decades and genres, which gives the show more of a “something for everyone” feel. Don’t like 60’s kaiju movies? Stick around for 70’s wrestling movies. Don’t like those? Well we’ve got 80’s cheeseball stuff too! I don’t like them all equally but - as they say - it’s all part of a balanced breakfast.

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While I can’t say there is a genre that I don’t really like, lately there have been a few I just can’t say no to. First off is a somewhat newer found appreciation for Japanese films. And not just the kaiju stuff. Things like Mighty Jack, Neptune Men, Fugitive Aliens and of course our beloved Prince of Space. There is such an intense earnestness to them. With no real explanation, there is a hero who just shows up, some children wearing shorts, and some nonsense sci-fi idea was just thrown against a wall. I kinda love them all.

But the other go-to films are why I was REALLY looking forward to this month. This will not be the first time I have binged spy films. And it’s a good thing I got a copy of Agent for H.A.R.M The 60’s spy genre has always been my weak point. And yes, I love the Flint flicks. For those who don’t know, those are spoofing the Bond films.

And god could I go for more El Santo movies.

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I used to be really into the black and white sci fi. I like those movies which is part of the reason I like MST. The sword and sandals stuff came next, especially Hercules Against the Moon Men and Cave Dwellers. Lately I like spies and secret agents, so the theme on Gizmoplex this month is making me happy.

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Same.

Like, that opening stretch of episodes in Season 8? PERFECTION.

When I got to see way, way more episodes, I drifted over to the musical crime caper, like with Untamed Youth, Catalina Caper, Daddy-O, The Beatniks, Teen-Age Strangler, and Girls Town.

I’d love to see a return to that someday!

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Cheesy sci-fi and fantasy for me, especially the sword and sorcery stuff.

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I like all MST3K. I don’t care what the movie genre is.

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I don’t dislike the kaiju or giant monster flicks, but those were never the ones that grabbed me. I did and still do have a soft spot for the fantasy episodes, and over the years I’ve become more of a fan of the teensploitation genre (well, “teen”)

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I would have assumed horror but I have a weird soft-spot simply for very 70s movies in general, particular with lots of outdoor scenes or odd-looking character actors.

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I don’t have a particular genre. My favorite episodes aren’t any one genre. I will just as happily watch Danger! Death Ray as Fugitive Alien or Hamlet. :slight_smile:

But I also usually watch the episodes in order, with rare moments where I decided to just watch one.

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Yeah, I’m with @TeriG: No particular genre, I tend to watch in order BUT I will say there are certain genres that seem to appeal more at certain times, and one genre that never does (which is the counter-culture-biker-type stuff). But even though I don’t like that genre and don’t generally pick them for when I do go out of order, I still love the episodes for Side Hackers, e.g.

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Does “a movie with a plot I can follow when half paying attention” count as a genre? Because that’s how I watch things these days. I used to watch an episode, but that’s so much harder with kids.

Seriously, though, the B&W sci-fi Season 8s were and continue to be the ones I come back to. I’ve found others from previous seasons that fit the bill, but I haven’t really branched out into many other genres. (I do have other favorite episodes, but that’s my favorite genre.) I still can’t get into the Japanese movies, which stinks because there are so many of them.

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70s action and TV movies. I particularly like the waka chi waka soundtracks of some. This goes for Rifftrax especially with some movie with burnt steak and cheap scotch.

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I like most of the genres that MST3K covers. THe only one I don’t care for is the Beatnick/Rebel Teen genra. I would never watch something in that genre without MST3k.

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An interesting way to look at it. Which genres would I never have watched if not for MST3K? Probably the teen stuff and biker stuff, but I’m grateful for MST3K introducing me to these. My life would be just a little bit hollow without the joys of Teen-Age Strangler and Daddy-O.

My favorite genre lately is secret agent – there never seems to be a bad time for Secret Agent Super Dragon or Danger Death Ray!! Runner-up is goofy sci-fi; Manhunt in Space, Robot Holocaust, etc.

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I don’t think I’d watch any of these movies without MST3K. Well, I did watch some of the TV stuff when it aired - The Master, Stranded in Space when it aired as The Stranger. I’m pretty sure I saw Angels Revenge at a drive-in in the '70s as Seven Angels.

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To try and narrow it down I took a look at what movies I didn’t I enjoy sitting through.

Robot Holocaust, City Limits, Alien from L.A. and Warrior of the Lost World

Escape 2000’s fine as an episode, but I don’t really like the movie, so maybe dystopian futures isn’t my thing (I know L.A. isn’t set in the future, but the underground material has that grimy, dystopian vibe to it)

Japan can be hit (Kaiju) or miss (I grow weary of the repetition in things like Prince)

But everything else I’m down with. Spies are great, Russian fantasy/sword and sandal, or sword and sorcery are great, teenagers… I guess if I had to choose one, I’d cast a wide net and say just about anything that would find a home on Creature Features I’m a fan of. Those B&W monsters and such (see the first 9 episodes of season 8)

And that’s something that’s not changed at all through the years.

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I used to focus on the older sci-fi and horror episodes, but as I expanded out from those I learned to appreciate the entire MSTie menagerie. I’ve still got a soft spot for black and white monster movies, though.

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For the B movie experience in general, the best flicks are late '50s-early '60s horror/monster movies. But a genre I already appreciated pre-MST3K is any that reflect the groovier late '60s ones. Seemingly perfect that my 1st MST3K was “Side Hackers”. “Seemingly” because the biker films are more depressing/violent and make up most Mystery Science fare in that area. As present in “Side Hackers”, even in its censored form.

Though less psychedelic, the spy films are a favorite, especially in recent years. And '70s TV movies are always fun for a Friday evening in normal prime time viewing hours (to the degree that exists anymore).

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I prefer any and all films that are ludicrous. Silly, over-the-top-with-concepts types of films. Stuff like Santa Claus Conquers the Martians appeals to me. Or all the Japanese space flicks we’ve seen. But especially the silly fantasy films.

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