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.
4. HBO's 8th Annual Young Comedians Special (1983) - Hosted by John Candy and featuring Joel.
5. Interview magazine (December 1984) - First national magazine with a feature article about Joel.
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.
8. KTMA Fan Club Membership Kit (March 11, 1989)
9. TV Guide (11/11/89) - article about original shows on the new Comedy Channel, not very flattering
10. Press photo of Joel from November 1989.
11. Various items of Comedy Channel memorabilia (c. 1989-90). T-Shirt, flasher button, video tape label
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.
13. Comedy Channel response to letter of support for MST3K (July 10, 1990)
14. TV Magazine (northwest IN) (7-21-90)
15. TV Guide (8-25-90) - MST3K listed in Cheers & Jeers
16. Membership to Information Club sent out in August 1990.
17. Comedy Channel letter announcing MST3K Labor Day Marathon plus September 1990 Schedule (8-28-90).
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
TV Week (Indpls)
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)
The Comedy Channel announced its merger with HA! in December 1990. The actual merger took place on 4-1-91.
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