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WSRE Kicks Off PBS Nerd Night Programming with “MST3K” Events

Last Updated by Mary Riker on

WSRE to broadcast cult classics “Doctor Who” and “Mystery Science Theater 3000”

PENSACOLA, Fla., March 10, 2016—WSRE is embracing nerd culture with a new PBS Nerd Night broadcast of “Doctor Who” followed by “Mystery Science Theater 3000” (“MST3K”) and related special events, including an April 1 free Amos Studio screening of the “MST3K: Pod People” episode and a May 26 Public Square Speakers Series event featuring “MST3K” stars Trace Beaulieu and Frank Conniff. The new Saturday late night programming begins at 10 p.m. on April 2.

Free “MST3K: Pod People” Amos Studio Screening

WSRE launched the local PBS Nerd campaign during Pensacon 2016, where fans voted on the “MST3K” episode they would most like to see on the Amos Studio big screen. “Pod People” won by a narrow margin over “Beginning of the End.” The show begins at 7 p.m. Friday, April 1 in the WSRE Jean & Paul Amos Performance Studio. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free.

New Saturday Late Night “Doctor Who” and “MST3K” Broadcast

The new PBS Nerd Night broadcast begins on WSRE’s main channel with “Robots,” Tom Baker’s 90-minute debut “Doctor Who” episode as the Fourth Doctor, airing at 10 p.m. Saturday, April 2. Baker played the role of the time-traveling scientist from 1974 to 1981, and his episodes of the BBC series were the first to be sold to PBS stations in the United States.

Starting with “MST3K: Gunslinger,” episodes of “Mystery Science Theater 3000” will follow “Doctor Who.” “MST3K” features skits and theater segments where the main characters watch and wisecrack (or riff) low-budget films. The commentary is both silly and smart and has been proven wildly popular with fans and critics, winning a Peabody Award in 1993.

Both shows have enjoyed cult followings for decades. Episodes vary in length, so the start time for “MST3K” will change from week to week, depending on the duration of the preceding “Doctor Who” show.

Public Square Speakers Series Presents Frank Conniff and Trace Beaulieu of “MST3K”

WSRE’s Public Square Speakers Series is bringing “MST3K” writers and actors, Trace Beaulieu and Frank Conniff, to the Amos Studio at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 26. This event is sponsored in part by Pensacon.

They will speak about their creative journey with “MST3K” and its impact on the rise of social TV. Following the free lecture, they will perform their live movie-riffing show “The Mads are Back!” featuring the clever B-movie improvisation for which they are renowned.  

On the television show, they played mad scientists Dr. Clayton Forrester (Beaulieu) and TV’s Frank (Conniff) who shot into space their janitor (Joel) and temp employee (Mike) and forced them to watch bad movies, which Joel, Mike and robot companions Crow T. Robot (also played by Beaulieu) and Tom Servo “riffed” with witty and hilarious commentary.

Visit wsre.org/PBSNerd to learn more.

Media Relations Contact:
Mary Riker
mriker@wsre.org