Mystery Science Theater 3000, the cult classic sci-fi/comedy series that found new life following a record-breaking Kickstarter campaign with the streaming giant Netflix, has been cancelled after getting two new seasons. Series creator and executive producer Joel Hodgson broke the news on Tuesday, while also giving fans hope that the show could potentially continue on with another platform in the future.
MST3K, as it's called by fans (also known as MSTies) originally debuted on the independent television station KTMA in Minnesota on Thanksgiving Day in 1988. Hodgson played Joel Robinson, a lowly custodian at the Gizmonic Institute who is shot into space by his employers. Forced to live out his days on the Satellite of Love with his robot friends, Robinson is subjected to an unending onslaught of really bad movies, usually low-grade sci-fi or horror films. The group would make jokes (or riffs) at the films' expense as they watched; a unique premise that was essentially the meat of the show. Over a decade-plus of episodes, a host change, robot re-castings and multiple network switches, MST3K earned a place among the great shows in TV history. Time magazine listed the original series among its 100 best TV shows of all time and the revival series, which starred Jonah Ray, Felicia Day and Patton Oswalt, was also well received.
Hodgson informed fans of Netflix's decision to cease its involvement in the MST3K project in an e-mail update for backers of the revival Kickstarter. He, Ray and Day later confirmed the news via separate posts on Twitter. However, it seems as though Hodgson is committed to keeping his show going in some form or another, writing this in his e-mail:
Now, I know you might have questions about the future of Mystery Science Theater, but as you've seen over the last four years, we are just as dedicated to keeping MST3K alive as ever. And I want to remind you that there are still lots of options for us to explore in the years to come. This isn’t our first rodeo! So, while this might be the end of the first chapter of bringing back MST3K, don't worry: it's not the last chapter.
The move to halt production on Mystery Science Theater 3000 by Netflix was one that has riled an extremely loyal fanbase; MSTies have taken to Twitter en masse to voice their support for whatever comes next. To that end, it's likely safe to assume the series has too much going for it simply fade into obscurity. Right now, the MST3K crew is in the midst of a massive, nearly 70-city tour that will run through March of next year. Even with a lack of new episodes, Hodgson and Co. could likely keep the brand alive with live shows alone. MST3K also just launched its official Twitch channel, and is set to once again commemorate its first episode with a Thanksgiving Day marathon this week.
Source: Joel Hodgson/Twitter