Ready for "Hopping Mad Over MST 3000"?

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Kris Talley

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May 3, 1993, 5:38:06 PM5/3/93
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I was really hoping someone else would do this because I've always sort
of felt sorry for people who re-type long articles for posting. But I
didn't want you all to miss this, so I scanned it, which makes me OK.

Anyway, this appeared in the April 22 Entertainment Section of the Ann
Arbor News. At first I thought it was a joke written by someone who is
actually a fan because it's so darn *venomous*, but now I think the guy
is really serious. I personally think it would be pretty funny if he
received postcards from MST fans all over the country, pointing out the
wrongness of his reasoning. If you're motivated to do that, I'll see if
I can dig up an address for the AA News.

Without further ado, here's:


HOPPING MAD OVER 'MST3000'


By STUART GALBRAITH IV
NEWS SPECLAL WRITER

My wife, Anne, normally writes this column, but right now she's just too
mad. She just caught part of the Comedy Channel's "Mystery Science
Theater 3000."

For anyone lucky enough to have avoided the program thus far "MST 3000"
features an "astronaut" and several "robots" (the latter actually
Muppet-like puppets) who watch real, honest-to goodness movies while
making comments, supposedly comical, based on the events onscreen.

The impact of this program, not only on the "so-bad-it's-good" genre, but
on movies of all types, is tremendous. At a recent 24-hour science
fiction movie marathon in Columbus, Ohio, Anne and I watched helplessly
as classic films the likes of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers"and
Disney's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" were mercilessly assaulted by
audience members "inspired" by this insipid show. One patron even
brought a life-size replica of one of the robots to keep him company.

After enduring several hours of crude, sexist remarks, nonstop belching
(Noel Coward it ain't) and other contemptible, frighteningly animal-like
behavior from these morons--about one-third of the audience--we left
furious and deeply saddened.

We felt sorry for all the children in the audience, children who were
presumably seeing these films for the first time. And as film Critic Gene
Siskel has rightly stated: You can only see a film for the first time
once. What were they to make of all this mayhem'?

Given the chance to work its powers, 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers" is
still genuinely creepy and unsettling, "20,000 Leagues" is still full of
wonder and excitement. But uninterested audience members didn't give
either film a chance. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" had given them the
green light to tear these pictures to shreds, and so they did. Just like
the madman who, a while back, flipped out in a Florence museum and took a
swing at Michelangelo's "David's" big toe.

An usher I spoke uith suggested the audience would calm down for the
newer films shown later that evening; laughing at older films, he
implied, was somehow acceptable simply because they were older, as if a
picture made before 1980 was inherently inferior to something new.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not defending bad films as great art, nor am I
demanding stony silence during screenings of "Plan 9 From Outer Space." A
bad script, cheap special effects, and amateurish acting can turn a bad
movie into a laugh riot. The difference here is the audience didn't let
the films' inadequacies or attributes speak for itself. They simply
didn't want to sit still for 90 minutes and keep their mouths shut. Long
before the program even began, these fools had declared an open season on
our film heritage.

Their complete lack of consideration was topped only by their astonishing
lack of talent. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" is itself painfully
unfunny, and this audience was much worse than that. The folks behind the
TV show and at the theater lack both the talent and the guts to do
stand-up before a real audience, or come up uith original material on
their own (they use so-called "bad" movies as their crutch). These people
are talentless cretins, and no one should have to put up with their
behavior in a public theater.

Every film, no matter how good or bad, deserves a chance. If you're
someone who believes film patrons want to spend $6.00 to listen to you
yak, please stay home. It'll make Anne--and myself--a lot happier.

G. Galcik

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May 3, 1993, 6:49:47 PM5/3/93
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In alt.tv.mst3k, h0...@hosp.med.umich.edu (Kris Talley) writes:
>I was really hoping someone else would do this because I've always sort
>of felt sorry for people who re-type long articles for posting. But I
>didn't want you all to miss this, so I scanned it, which makes me OK.
>
>Anyway, this appeared in the April 22 Entertainment Section of the Ann
>Arbor News. At first I thought it was a joke written by someone who is
>actually a fan because it's so darn *venomous*, but now I think the guy
>is really serious. I personally think it would be pretty funny if he
>received postcards from MST fans all over the country, pointing out the
>wrongness of his reasoning. If you're motivated to do that, I'll see if
>I can dig up an address for the AA News.

Wow, who would've thought: MST3K is doing to be the Howard Stern of
Comedy Central.

Yes, by all means, please dig up that address. I've been in a "let's write them
a bunch of letters" frame of mine of late; I think I'll send one off to the
guy.

Can't help wondering which people were true MiSTers and which were just bozos;
wish I knew whether the guy with the 'bot clones was being crude, or if he was
just waiting for a really bad movie before he said anything. Wonder if he was
as embarrassed as I would have been, if I showed up in a similar situation
carrying Servo and Crow lookalikes.

------------------------------ --- ------------------------------------
Greg Galcik tm|bg Since I work for the government, God
gal...@sinbad.navsses.navy.mil | help me if my opinions are the same
An Equal Opportunity Annoyer. mst3k as my employer's.
-----------My Extremely Tiny FTP Server: spider.navsses.navy.mil-----------

Dave Van Domelen

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May 3, 1993, 8:45:22 PM5/3/93
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Gee, someone didn't see a single scrap of the ad material for the Drexel
North's SF Marathon (that's the Columbus thing the article bitches about). If
he had seen the ads, he would have expected such behavior. Of course, being
from Ann Arbor and near the OSU campus probably put him in a bad mood to start
with. }-> (Oooh! Interscholastic sniping! Can you dig it?!?)
Dave Van Domelen, sitting amused.

Michael F. Booth

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May 4, 1993, 1:10:20 AM5/4/93
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In a previous article, h0...@hosp.med.umich.edu (Kris Talley) says:

> HOPPING MAD OVER 'MST3000'
>
>By STUART GALBRAITH IV
>NEWS SPECLAL WRITER
>

> (Uninformed slams against MST3K deleted.)

Wow. Just how many things can one person not understand?

Just to save everyone ELSE on the net the trouble of illuminating these:

1) Writing MST3K is not a talentless art. Even if you don't like the
jokes, you have to admit that it is NOT easy coming up with something
diverting to shout back at "Manos" (just to pick one example).

2) MST3K is not connected with callbacks at sci-fi marathons.
Really! MST3K may have made callbacks a bit more common, but the notion
was invented long, long ago. Hasn't this guy ever heard of The Rocky
Horror Picture Show, a movie that would have died a horrible death if it
wasn't for ritualized audience jeering? Moreover, does this guy
seriously believe that Marathon movie audiences were quiet as mice in
the many, many years before MST3K was invented???

3) This guy does not seem to understand the nature of movie marathons at
all. He should think about this. If movie marathons were meant to be
sober affairs, they would not all consist of 4 good films, 6 mediocre
films and 3 BAAAAD films. (Quality is not heavily emphasized here.)
They would also not continue for 24 to 36 straight hours, so that
everyone is too darn TIRED to enjoy, or even recognize,
inspired filmmaking.

As it is, heckling and props and relaxed manners are part of the show,
IMHO. If you can't take it, avoid marathons and rent the videos.

4) We are confusing the difference between sci-fi marathons and the rest
of Moviedom. If callbacks were constantly creeping into "serious" film
showings, I would take it VERY seriously. However, even though I've
seen some truly BAD non-Marathon offerings at my local college Film
Society, I have never heard a loud callback during a film. In fact,
in my experience, the major noise problem in films these days is those
children the author is trying to introduce to "20,000 Leagues." If he
somehow imagines that children are the innocent victims of adults' theater
callbacks, I invite him to watch the "Batman" in a moviehouse
full of screaming little brats. He'll soon learn where the problem lies.



--
Michael F. Booth | "His brain began to buzz gently and suck its thumb.
m...@po.cwru.edu | Lots of little synapses deep inside his cerebral
CWRU Physics 1993 | cortex all joined hands and started dancing around
Cornell Phys.199? | and singing nursery rhymes. " --Douglas Adams

R. M. Dunkle

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May 4, 1993, 1:15:03 AM5/4/93
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I wouldn't worry too much about this - the guy's a complete nimrod.
Trust me on this one. Maybe someone who still lives in Ann Arbor could post
a couple of his reviews for MiSTing.
I read his reviews, when I still lived there, for a contrary opinion,
but they were so insipid, haughty, and inane that I had to move away! :)

Or, as Tom Servo would say:

"Ooooh, is *The Great* Stuart Galbraith the fourth going to grace us
with his opinion?"


--
* Brian A. Dunkle | rdu...@aal.itd.umich.edu <- REPLY TO HERE!! Not "engin" *
* Also available at bdu...@ccit.arizona.edu <- Where I really am, but VAX *
* Support systems analyst, Information Technologies Center, AzHSL /\ *
* Detroit Red Wings fan, stranded in the desert, Tucson, Arizona \/ *

Gregory S. Bandy

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May 4, 1993, 5:59:12 AM5/4/93
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>I was really hoping someone else would do this because I've always sort
>of felt sorry for people who re-type long articles for posting. But I
>didn't want you all to miss this, so I scanned it, which makes me OK.
>
>Anyway, this appeared in the April 22 Entertainment Section of the Ann
>Arbor News. At first I thought it was a joke written by someone who is
>actually a fan because it's so darn *venomous*, but now I think the guy
>is really serious. I personally think it would be pretty funny if he
>received postcards from MST fans all over the country, pointing out the
>wrongness of his reasoning. If you're motivated to do that, I'll see if
>I can dig up an address for the AA News.

It sounds to me that the guy is full of sour grapes and is
fortunate enough to have a medium (his wife's column) to vent his
spleen. He doesn't say specifically, but it sounds like he and
his wife saw MST3K after they attended the film festival.

I have to agree that I'd probably be mad if I went to a movie or a
film festival and a bunch of people in the audience started giving
the film the MST3K treatment. And I'm sure most of it was nowhere
near as funny as Joel and the 'bots. But at the same time, I
think the guy needs to lighten up. He strikes me as a movie
"purist" that's too relevant for his own good.

I wonder if he has a sense of humor to get a kick of receiving
postcards. I kind of doubt it. It would probably lead to another
column where he called us all a bunch of rude, immature, children
with nothing better to do with our time.

Hmmmmm. . . Now that I think about it, what's that address? :)

________________________
Greg Bandy
Richmond, VA
USA
gba...@hunter.win.net
CIS 71331,142

Jim Davis

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May 3, 1993, 7:39:38 PM5/3/93
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In article <1s43bu$j...@terminator.rs.itd.umich.edu> h0...@hosp.med.umich.edu (Kris Talley) quotes:

>Their complete lack of consideration was topped only by their astonishing
>lack of talent. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" is itself painfully
>unfunny, and this audience was much worse than that. The folks behind the
>TV show and at the theater lack both the talent and the guts to do
>stand-up before a real audience,

Hmm... must've been hallucinating. Thought for sure I saw Joel
Hodgson do some pretty good standup on SNL. Even heard rumors he made
a living on the standup circuit before MST3K.

>or come up uith original material on
>their own (they use so-called "bad" movies as their crutch).

The props he used must've been part of the hallucination too. I've
seen dozens of Clone Comedians -- just watch Comedy Central at almost
any non-MST3K time -- but I can't offhand think of anyone doing stuff
like Joel did.

>These people
>are talentless cretins, and no one should have to put up with their
>behavior in a public theater.

I don't dispute the characterization of the audience -- they sound
Boorish to the Nth Degree. That's not what MST3K is about, and the
article's author should know that. OTOH if they just don't like
MST3K, then fine. But blaming MST3K for the crowd's misbehaviour is
bogus. They should blame the parents instead.
--
Jim Davis | "Hey, do you want me to check your account?"
jda...@cs.arizona.edu | -- BOfH

EMeyer

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May 4, 1993, 4:10:55 PM5/4/93
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> Anyway, this appeared in the April 22 Entertainment Section of the Ann
> Arbor News. At first I thought it was a joke written by someone who is
> actually a fan because it's so darn *venomous*, but now I think the guy
> is really serious. I personally think it would be pretty funny if he
> received postcards from MST fans all over the country, pointing out the
> wrongness of his reasoning. If you're motivated to do that, I'll see if
> I can dig up an address for the AA News.

Why send this guy anything? Any mail he receives about this will be
automatically slotted into the "mail received from idiots" category, and
he'll never give it a second thought. Save yourself the postage.

> After enduring several hours of crude, sexist remarks, nonstop belching
> (Noel Coward it ain't) and other contemptible, frighteningly animal-like
> behavior from these morons--about one-third of the audience--we left
> furious and deeply saddened.

This behavior (the audience's, not the columnist's) is not something the
MST3K crew would approve of, I think. Having met some of them, I feel
pretty confident saying that.

> Given the chance to work its powers, 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers" is
> still genuinely creepy and unsettling, "20,000 Leagues" is still full of
> wonder and excitement.

True, at least to some degree...

> But uninterested audience members didn't give
> either film a chance. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" had given them the
> green light to tear these pictures to shreds, and so they did.

If this guy is trying to blame MST3K for such behavior--ignoring for the
moment the fact that such activities have been happening at conventions for
many years--this is like saying, "Hitler supported abortion, so anyone who
supports abortion is an insane genocidal Nazi." Or, "That anti-abortion
protestor who killed that Florida doctor is a Christian, so all Christians
are murderers."

> Their complete lack of consideration was topped only by their astonishing
> lack of talent. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" is itself painfully
> unfunny, and this audience was much worse than that. The folks behind the
> TV show and at the theater lack both the talent and the guts to do
> stand-up before a real audience, or come up uith original material on
> their own (they use so-called "bad" movies as their crutch). These people
> are talentless cretins, and no one should have to put up with their
> behavior in a public theater.

Whether the crowd is a bunch of "talentless cretins" or not, I think
that Judex (and the other denziens of Minneapolis) can attest to the
stand-up work of Joel, Trace, Frank & company. I'll let them take this guy
apart on this point. Joel's work with his gizmos previous to MST3K as been
mentioned in this thread, and elsewhere.
"Painfully unfunny?" To each his own, I suppose.

> Every film, no matter how good or bad, deserves a chance. If you're
> someone who believes film patrons want to spend $6.00 to listen to you
> yak, please stay home. It'll make Anne--and myself--a lot happier.

Oh, and making you happier is what we all want! (Of course, I agree
with this much--a public theater is NOT the place to try your hand at
commentary, except in special cases like "Rocky Horror.")
You know, I've talked to people who don't enjoy MST3K because they can't
stand the movies, even WITH the commentary. This is the first person I've
heard of who doesn't like the show because of the remarks, regardless of
the movie. If this guy thinks every film deserves a chance, let's see what
he makes of "Manos." Better yet, let's strap him--and his little dog,
too!--to a chair and show "Manos" to him TEN TIMES IN A ROW!!! That'll
change his tune.
What's that? Oh, yeah, the Constitution DOES prohibit that sort of
thing, doesn't it? Well, never mind then.

-EMeyer

Unstable condition--a symptom of life |Eric A. Meyer (ea...@po.cwru.edu)
In mental and environmental change |Library Information Technologies
Atmospheric disturbance--the feverish flux| Software Support Technician
Of human interface and interchange- (N.P.)|"What do you think, sirs?" -Joel

Robert J. Granvin

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May 4, 1993, 5:21:07 PM5/4/93
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|> > Their complete lack of consideration was topped only by their astonishing
|> > lack of talent. "Mystery Science Theater 3000" is itself painfully
|> > unfunny, and this audience was much worse than that. The folks behind the
|>
|> "Painfully unfunny?" To each his own, I suppose.

Kinda reminds me of the funny/unfunny flash card segment.

Gallagher? _Extremely_ unfunny.

--
\\ Robert J. Granvin User Services Specialist
// School of Statistics - University of Minnesota r...@stat.umn.edu

Mark Meyer

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May 5, 1993, 10:49:02 AM5/5/93
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In article <eam3-040...@ul34824.ul.cwru.edu> ea...@po.cwru.edu (EMeyer) writes:
> Better yet, let's strap him--and his little dog, too!--to a chair and
> show "Manos" to him TEN TIMES IN A ROW!!! That'll change his tune.
> What's that? Oh, yeah, the Constitution DOES prohibit that sort of
> thing, doesn't it? Well, never mind then.

So what if the Constitution prohibits it? :-)

BTW, today's Doonesbury (May 5) has Boopsie trying out a
virtual-reality Home Shopping Club helmet and accidentally buying a
forklift.

--
Mark Meyer | mme...@dseg.ti.com |
Texas Instruments, Inc., Plano TX +--------------------+
Every day, Jerry Junkins is grateful that I don't speak for TI.
Vique's Law: A man without religion is like a fish without a bicycle.

Gregory S. Bandy

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May 5, 1993, 6:00:07 AM5/5/93
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> You know, I've talked to people who don't enjoy MST3K because they can't
>stand the movies, even WITH the commentary. This is the first person I've
>heard of who doesn't like the show because of the remarks, regardless of
>the movie. If this guy thinks every film deserves a chance, let's see what
>he makes of "Manos." Better yet, let's strap him--and his little dog,
>too!--to a chair and show "Manos" to him TEN TIMES IN A ROW!!! That'll
>change his tune.
> What's that? Oh, yeah, the Constitution DOES prohibit that sort of
>thing, doesn't it? Well, never mind then.

Yes, but the Constitution doesn't apply to us because we're evil!
EVIL!!!

Push the button, Frank.

Daniel S. Rice

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May 10, 1993, 3:12:05 AM5/10/93
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In article <1s43bu$j...@terminator.rs.itd.umich.edu> Kris Talley

<h0...@hosp.med.umich.edu> writes:
>Anyway, this appeared in the April 22 Entertainment Section of the Ann
>Arbor News.

[Lights blink in the control pod]

Joel: Oh No! We got criticism sign!

HOPPING MAD OVER 'MST3000'

Joel: (old Scandinavian lady voice) Well I vash so mad I could just hop!
Tom: Yah, dat really ticks me off ven dey do dat.

By STUART GALBRAITH IV

Tom: Wow! My favorite economist!

NEWS SPECIAL WRITER

Joel: He's "Special" (makes quotes with hands)

My wife, Anne, normally writes this column, but right now she's just too
mad. She just caught

Crow: A bad dose of the clap from some sailor...

part of the Comedy Channel's "Mystery Science Theater 3000." For
anyone lucky enough to have avoided the program thus far "MST 3000"
features an "astronaut"

Joel: I'm just a janitor, really...

and several "robots" (the latter actually Muppet-like puppets)

Crow: You don't think we're muppet-like, do you Joel? (quivery voice)
Joel: No, no, crow, I prefer to think of you as "animatronic"
Crow: Thanks, Joel. I'm relieved.

who watch real, honest-to goodness movies

Tom: This guy obviously didn't see "Manos"!

while making comments, supposedly comical, based on the events onscreen.

Joel: Any resemblance between these comments and any actual onscreen
events is purely coincidental.

The impact of this program, not only on the "so-bad-it's-good" genre, but
on movies of all types, is tremendous.

Crow: Why thank you... Hey!

At a recent 24-hour science fiction movie marathon in Columbus, Ohio,
Anne and I watched helplessly

Tom: As the technicians dripped saline solution into our clamped-open
eyeballs...

as classic films the likes of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" and
Disney's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea"

Tom: (sings) unda da sea, unda da sea

were mercilessly assaulted by audience members "inspired" by this
insipid show. One patron even brought a life-size replica of one of
the robots to keep him company.

Tom: My long-lost brother!

After enduring several hours of crude, sexist remarks,

Crow: ...we got the hang of it and cracked wise with the best of them.
We laughed and laughed!

nonstop belching

Joel: Is that anatomically possible?

(Noel Coward it ain't)

Tom: It's not even Noel Redding.

and other contemptible, frighteningly animal-like behavior from these
morons--about one-third of the audience--we left furious and deeply
saddened.

Joel: I wonder why everyone applauded when we left...?

We felt sorry for all the children in the audience, children who were

Tom: ...no doubt playing hooky.

presumably seeing these films for the first time. And as film Critic
Gene Siskel has rightly stated: You can only see a film for the first
time once.

Joel: Also the second time.
Crow: I think Ebert disagreed, though.

What were they to make of all this mayhem'?

Tom: Johnny was deeply scarred by the mayhem around him and
had killed a man before his 12th birthday. Today he sells
brushes door-to-door and has made peace with his demons.

Given the chance to work its powers, 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers" is
still genuinely creepy and unsettling,

Crow: So is a 7-11 burrito.

"20,000 Leagues" is still full of wonder and excitement. But
uninterested audience members didn't give either film a chance.

Joel: Why did the producers?

"Mystery Science Theater 3000" had given them the green light to tear
these pictures to shreds, and so they did.

Crow: You are our willing slaves...

Just like the madman who, a while back, flipped out in a Florence
museum and took a swing at Michelangelo's "David's" big toe.

Joel: Hey, I think I went to highschool with that guy!

An usher I spoke with suggested the audience would calm down for the


newer films shown later that evening;

Tom: By then the drugs in the popcorn would have kicked in.

laughing at older films, he implied, was somehow acceptable simply because
they were older, as if a picture made before 1980 was inherently
inferior to something new.

Joel: "Citizen Kane" cracks me up every time.

Don't get me wrong,

Tom: (sings) Don't get meeee wrong...

I'm not defending bad films as great art, nor am I demanding stony
silence during screenings of "Plan 9 From Outer Space." A bad script,
cheap special effects, and amateurish acting can turn a bad movie into
a laugh riot.

Joel: Oh, for fun! Let's make more films like that! I'm chuckling already!

The difference here is the audience didn't let the films' inadequacies
or attributes speak for itself.

Crow: They let this guy write a column?
Tom: Maybe his wife has a better grasp of English grammar?

They simply didn't want to sit still for 90 minutes and keep their
mouths shut. Long before the program even began, these fools had
declared an open season on our film heritage.

Tom: "Gentlemen, I hold here the last remaining print of Gone With the Wind.
Pull!"

Their complete lack of consideration was topped only by their astonishing
lack of talent.

Tom: Which in turn was bested by my astounding lack of gonads.

"Mystery Science Theater 3000" is itself painfully unfunny,

Crow: Has this guy been hanging out with the Mads?
Joel: Probably a deep childhood trauma.
Tom: We should all pity him.

and this audience was much worse than that. The folks behind the TV
show and at the theater lack both the talent and the guts to do
stand-up before a real audience

Tom: How about a fake audience?

or come up uith original material on their own

Joel: Yes, I prefer to steal my original material.

(they use so-called "bad" movies as their crutch).

Crow: Funny as a crutch, Potsie.

These people are talentless cretins, and no one should have to put up
with their behavior in a public theater.

Joel: Didn't the supreme court say it's ok to be a talentless cretin in
a crowded theater?

Every film, no matter how good or bad, deserves a chance.

Crow: You're right Tom, he hasn't seen "Manos."

If you're someone who believes film patrons want to spend $6.00 to
listen to you yak, please stay home.

Tom: (sarcastic) I'll go tell Spalding Gray.

It'll make Anne--and myself--a lot happier.

Crow: Do I detect a causal relationship?
Tom: Next week: "Hoppin' Mad Over _Rhoda_"
Joel: We're outta here, guys.
All: Bite us, it's fun!

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