The 13 Best Mystery Science Theater 3000 Songs

By Ethan Kaye in Daily Lists, TV
Friday, December 3, 2010 at 8:04 am
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There are awesome TV shows. And then there was Mystery Science Theater 3000, a show so awesome that it can't even be mentioned in the same breath as other shows. And while it re-emerges in the form of Rifftrax and Cinematic Titanic, the original series will always have a legion of loyal fans, ready to defend this little Minnesota puppet show with their lives.

One of the many, many reasons the show is still so immensely popular is because of the many, many hilarious songs Joel, Mike, Crow and Tom Servo ended up singing in the service of mocking whatever terrible movies they happened to be watching that week. Many of these songs were eventually collected on two CDs -- Clowns in the Sky I & II, now out of print, but available on iTunes, and totally worth buying. As a gentle reminder, here's the top 13 tunes that every MSTie should know by heart.

13) The Sandy Frank Song
Sandy Frank is the man responsible for dubbing and releasing all those awful Japanese monster movies that comprised most of the early MST3K seasons. And so, he got his own theme song during Time of the Apes (episode 306), an awful Japanese Planet of the Apes rip-off. According to the song, Sandy Frank "gads about the house all day," "thinks that people come from trees," and, in one of many versions of the song sung in the theater, "likes to crap in his hand." In a result that no one could have possibly foreseen, this reportedly pissed off Frank , who refused to part with his film rights for MST DVDs (until just now, apparently).

12) When I Held Your Brain in My Arms
Have the cold, brilliant aliens Observers heard of music? You bet your sweet brain stems they do as they ably prove in Terror from the Year 5,000 (ep. 807). Sure, it's kind of jarring to have Kevin Murphy's/Servo's voice coming out of Mike Nelson's face, but it's worth it to hear him croon his way around various parts of the brain. Also, this song is noteworthy because it's the only instance that Suddenly, Susan has been funny in any context whatsoever.

11) The Waffle Song
Why did MST feature an all-waffle-themed episode for Viking Women and the Sea Serpent (ep. 317)? God only knows. But the highlight is this, the official theme song of waffles forevermore (the song starts at 7:17 in the video above). Waffles!

10) Loving Lovers Love
When public television stations need cash, they put on all sorts of entertainment for their viewers, in an attempt to get donations. Pearl Forrester tried doing the same thing in Overdrawn at the Memory Bank (ep. 822), only to make enough money to go to the track. But she still had to put on some entertainment, and her duet with the Observer was a surprisingly tender, yet confusing love ballad about...something. It was creepy, any way you look at it.

9) Master Ninja Theme Song
Because those Van Patten brothers are so headstrong! Easily the coolest thing about Master Ninja (ep. 322) was the theme song Joel and the 'Bots decided to make for the old '80s TV series. Here's a fact that never fails to blow my mind: Tim Van Patten, the horrible, horrible star of Master Ninja is now a respected TV director. Seriously, he does episodes for HBO all the time, including The Sopranos, Deadwood, The Wire, Boardwalk Empire, Rome, and more. Seriously, the guy who drove a van with a hamster in it in Master Ninja directed episodes of those acclaimed shows. Weird, huh?

8) United Servo Academy Men's Chorus Hymn
No offense to anyone else on the show, but Kevin Murphy/Servo had the best voice on the show. Having an entire chorus of Tom Servos singing in harmony together? It's actually pretty awesome, as this song from The Starfighters (ep. 612) ably proves. It's also kind of scary, actually. One man, singing each part at a time, should probably not sound that good when all the tracks are played together -- and there were many, many parts to each harmony.

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