The Early Days
3500BC - 1991

This is an assortment of the items I've found dating from before MST3K through the formative years of the show on KTMA and The Comedy Channel

1. 1979 Badger - University of Wisconsin - Madison yearbook
The 1978-79 school year was Jim Mallon's first as the president of the Wisconsin Student Assembly (WSA).  This yearbook related many stories of the exploits of the Pail & Shovel Party led by Jim and vice-president Leon Varjian.  Below you can see Leon at the first official toga party and Jim playing with one of the toys purchased with WSA funds.


2. 1980 Badger - University of Wisconsin - Madison yearbook
        In Jim's unprecedented second year as president the antics continued.  It appears that Pail & Shovel had won over many fans.  Below are a caricature of Leon and Jim followed by probably the two most famous stunts, the Statue of Liberty on Lake Mendota and Bascom Hill covered by pink flamingos.  The bottom row of pictures below shows Jim standing next to the governor of Wisconsin who has just been hit in the face with a pie (for charity), Jim holding a Charlie the Tuna doll and then Jim presiding over Toga II.




3. February 1982 Program from the Comedy Cabaret in Minneapolis that highlights Joel Hodgson as one of the upcoming performers.  Notice that Joel appears to have a mustache and is described as the "Johnny Rotten of Comedy."  He had yet to flesh out the character of Agent J.

        mem-joel82a.jpg (54660 bytes)    mem-joel82b.jpg (91344 bytes)

mem-joel82c.jpg (49354 bytes)

4. HBO's 8th Annual Young Comedians Special (1983) - Hosted by John Candy and featuring Joel.

        mem-ear-hbo.jpg (86533 bytes)     mem-ear-hbo-x.jpg (90584 bytes)

5. Interview magazine (December 1984) - First national magazine with a feature article about Joel.

        mem-ear-8412intx.jpg (74475 bytes)        mag-8412.jpg (34894 bytes)

6. Blood Hook one-sheet movie poster (1987).  This is an original one-sheet (27"x41") for the theatrical release.
        Also shown is the first video release of the movie by Prism from 8/27/90 and the Troma Team re-release from 1/13/97.

7. Jerry Seinfeld's Stand-Up Confidential (1987) - Joel co-wrote and has cameo appearances.

        mem-ear-sein.jpg (85071 bytes)     mem-ear-sein-x.jpg (85123 bytes)

8. KTMA Fan Club Membership Kit (March 11, 1989)

 mem-ktma-letter.jpg (106298 bytes) mem-ktma-news.jpg (135673 bytes)

mem-ktma-cert.jpg (65542 bytes)     mem-ktma-card.jpg (24394 bytes)

9. TV Guide (11/11/89) - article about original shows on the new Comedy Channel, not very flattering

        mem-ear-891111tv.jpg (57527 bytes)

10.  Press photo of Joel from November 1989.

        JoelPressPic89.jpg (53184 bytes)

11. Various items of Comedy Channel memorabilia (c. 1989-90).  T-Shirt, flasher button, video tape label


        mem-comchan-sticker.jpg (19238 bytes)

12. Membership to the Information Club notice sent in Spring 1990.   A note was attached asking fans to write to the Comedy Channel asking them to renew their contract.

        mem-ear-member1.jpg (75069 bytes)     mem-ear-member1a.jpg (127132 bytes)        mem-ear-bbihelp.jpg (70473 bytes)

13. Comedy Channel response to letter of support for MST3K (July 10, 1990)

        mem-ear-cc900710.jpg (54279 bytes)

14. TV Magazine (northwest IN) (7-21-90)

        mem-ear-900721.jpg (64721 bytes)

15. TV Guide (8-25-90) - MST3K listed in Cheers & Jeers

        mem-ear-900835tv.jpg (62173 bytes)         mag-900825.jpg (20277 bytes)

16. Membership to Information Club sent out in August 1990.

        mem-ear-member2.jpg (78486 bytes)     mem-ear-member2a.jpg (129779 bytes)

17. Comedy Channel letter announcing MST3K Labor Day Marathon plus September 1990 Schedule (8-28-90).

        mem-ear-cc900828.jpg (85743 bytes)

18. The Comedy Channel Presents the Rock Bottom Awards, 36 card set.  1990
        A slip inside the box lists some Comedy Channel info.


19.  Other early magazines with MST3K content

mem-ear-901008.jpg (106154 bytes) mem-ear-901029.jpg (140667 bytes) 19901200.jpg (79308 bytes) mem-ear-901209.jpg (118284 bytes) mem-ear-901231peo.jpg (122954 bytes) mem-ear-901231tim.jpg (95318 bytes) mem-ear-910118.jpg (102748 bytes) mem-cc-910124.jpg (111259 bytes)
Satellite Orbit
Dec 90
TV Week (Indpls)
Entertainment Weekly
Rolling Stone
Picks and Pans - positive note My In-Laws, the Housefly

(see left pic below)

Voted Best Series Revival Lengthy positive review Picks and Pans - positive year end note Picked as one of best shows of 1990 Comedy Channel and HA! merge.  MST3K only hit. MST is only show worth saving on Comedy Channel

(see right pic below)

mag-901029.jpg (31922 bytes)     mag-910124.jpg (60889 bytes)    

 The Comedy Channel announced its merger with HA! in December 1990.  The actual merger took place on 4-1-91.

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