Philadelphians might be known for our heckling, but this summer, some folks who made a career out of it will come to town to show us how it’s really done — when it comes to sci-fi flicks, at least.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 will take its show on the road this summer with the “Watch Out for Snakes!” tour, which comes to Philadelphia for two shows on July 7 at the Keswick Theatre. Series creator (and Bucks County resident) Joel Hodgson will emcee, with cast members Jonah Ray, Baron Vaughn (voice of Tom Servo), Hampton Yount (Crow T. Robot), and others also joining in.
The Philadelphia date is one of seven on the tour to feature two separate performances. The first, scheduled for 7 p.m., will feature the MST3K crew taking another look at Eegah, a fan favorite that was first mocked in season five of the original show. The second performance, at 10 p.m., will feature a “Secret Surprise Film!” that a release refers to as a “fun, sci-fi thriller” that has never been shown on MST3K.
The show’s tour comes following a successful Kickstarter campaign that rebooted MST3K with Jonah Ray replacing Hodgson as host. That series premiered in April this year to stellar reviews, with review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes showing a 100 percent rating for the reboot.
As Hodgson wrote in a Kickstarter update announcing the tour, Netflix has not yet committed to a second season of the MST3K reboot. However, the series’ creator says that a live show is a “great way to develop and test new ideas in real time.”
“It’s a bit like rapid prototyping’ the entire show to find out what works,” Hodgson wrote, “and what needs more love!”
The “Watch Out for Snakes!” tour is the first for this iteration for MST3K. Hodgson and co. last put on a show in 1994 at the inaugural MST3K Convetio-con, as blog Monkeys Fighting Robots reports. The crew previously did live renditions in 1992 and 1989 in Minneapolis, where MST3K debuted in 1988.
Most recently, Hodgson has toured live shows including Cinematic Titantic, an MST3K-like show that concluded its live runs in 2013, and “Joel Hodgson: Riffing Myself,” which ran in 2012 and 2013.