Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Shows I Miss: Cheap Seats

In the Cheap Seats/MST3K crossover, Mike, Crow and Servo took aim at Randy and Jason.

In some ways, the Sklar Brothers' hilarious Cheap Seats, in which Randy and Jason snarked MST3K style on old footage from both the ESPN and ABC Sports vaults, was more watchable than the classic Minneapolis-based comedy show that influenced them. It was faster-paced than MST3K and only a half-hour long. At two hours, MST3K could occasionally be tedious viewing--especially when the B-movie was so unwatchable not even Mike and the Bots' jokes could make it watchable.

I particularly liked it when Randy and Jason would make music references even the MST3K writers probably wouldn't have understood (like their observation that a mustached, helmet-haired Scrabble tournament champ looks like he stepped out of the "Sabotage" video). It's too bad the show, which ran from 2004 to 2006 on ESPN Classic (a channel that at one point, attempted to ruin its best show by stupidly adding a studio audience to the Cheap Seats set), will never see the light of day on DVD. I assume that's due to footage and music rights issues. There are so many Cheap Seats gems like the "Sabotage" running gag during the Scrabble tournament footage, the Cheap Seats/MST3K crossover and the "Pam Poetry" odes to a blond '80s ESPN rodeo commentator named Pam Minick that I want to revisit without having to hunt for them on YouTube.

"I bring the juice! You bring the gin-ick, Pam Minick!"

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