As a long time fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000, I was really thrilled when I heard that Cinematic Titanic would be doing a weekend of live shows here in Chicago at the Lakeshore Theater. Each night they would be doing a different movie and I got to go last night when they screened and riffed on “Blood of the Vampires.”
The line-up for the evening was basically the original cast of MST3K… Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu (Crow, Dr. Forrester), Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank), J. Elvis Weinstein (Tom Servo, Dr. Larry), and Mary Jo Pehl (Pearl).
After a fairly lame warm up involving Dave Allen (Mr. Rosso from Freaks & Geeks), Conniff, and Weinstein, we got underway with the movie.
The movie was of course bad. Train wreck bad. Fillipino vampire movie from the 60’s bad. Characters in black-face bad. The cast set up on either side of the stage w/ their scripts and riffed away.
I have to say, the jokes were fantastic and just as smart and sharp as the on MST3K. A little edgier though since they don’t have a television network and the FCC to appease. Not too bawdy or anything, just edgier. It was a little surreal to be watching the movie and hear a joke come out in either Joel or “Crow’s” voice and to see the person delivering the line.
It was odd seeing “Mr. Rosso” there because he was sort of a roadie helping set up and setting out water and everything. He was in that weird Comedy Central show recently as the Naked Trucker so it was odd to see him as a glorified roadie. He’s been friends with them all a long time though, so I guess that explains it.
It was a really amazing experience to get to see these guys in person after being such a fan since I was younger. They all look about the same, though older. They’re doing two more shows tonight so if there are any tickets left, I highly recommend you go. Otherwise, keep an eye out for future shows. Definitely worth the price!