Cinematic Titanic

Cult films have a long history of attracting audiences to jeer at their bizarre scripts, horrible acting, and cheap sets. You can’t explain why you enjoy them; you just do. Joel Hodgson and his late ’80s show, Mystery Science Theater 3000, caught a ride on that inexplicable obsession (and the Satellite of Love) with a simple concept: watch movies and make fun of them. And we (geeks) watched and loved the cult program, launched on basic cable in Minnesota. It was life ridiculing bad art. After Hodgson’s departure, the show continued until 1999. Now, he explained recently by phone from Los Angeles, he and several original writer-performers have regrouped to form Cinematic Titanic, a not-too-distant relative of MST3K. Of the new touring comedy troupe, which vends its spoofs via DVD and download from its Web site, says Hodgson, “Cinematic Titanic is like a boat on fire right now. Something is going on and I can’t say what. But it has something to do with being in front of an audience.” Robots Crow and Tom Servo, alas, are gone. But Hodgson is looking forward to his two Seattle shows (tonight and Saturday): “People are really into it.” That, sir, is a monstrous understatement. NEIL ESTEP

Fri., March 13, 8 p.m.; Sat., March 14, 8 p.m., 2009

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