Mystery Science Theater 3000 - Characteristic Elements - Midwestern References

Midwestern References

Many of the riffs and cultural references made by the humans and bots in the show are specific to the Minneapolis – St. Paul area, reflecting the origin of the show (recorded throughout its eleven seasons in this area) and the Best Brains staff's Midwestern roots. For example, in episode 422 (featuring The Day the Earth Froze), Crow T. Robot remarks how Scandinavia resembles southern Wisconsin with the crack: "It's the Swedish Dells!" He then says in a heavy Swedish accent: "The Dooks! Ride the dooks!" (that is, the 'Ducks', an amphibious tour vehicle). There is also an episode where they reference former U.S. Sen. William Proxmire, D-Wis. In the fan-favorite episode 424, "Manos: The Hands of Fate", one scene is accompanied by the exclamation "filmed on location in Spooner, WI." The character of Mike Nelson is also from Little Chute, Wisconsin and in episode 810, The Giant Spider Invasion, which is set in Wisconsin, the crew accordingly mocks riotous mobs by shouting variations of "Packers won the Super Bowl!!" (Hodgson is a native of Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin and Packers fan. However, some members of the cast and crew are ardent fans of the arch-rival Minnesota Vikings, even having Vikings running back Robert Smith in a dialogue-less cameo in one episode). References to the Twin Cities suburbs such as Maplewood and Edina are also common, e.g., "Featuring Music normally heard at the Days Inn lounge in Columbia Heights". Mary Jo Pehl's home town of Circle Pines, Minnesota is also mentioned in a number of episodes. Actual directions off of the Beltline in Madison, WI, have also been given on the show. Other Midwestern areas referenced at various times in the series include Chicago (writer/performer Kevin Murphy is from Illinois, and the film from episode 517, "Beginning of the End" is set in Illinois; WGN is referenced several times, particularly its late-1980s commercial bumpers for movie broadcasts), Iowa (in "Outlaw of Gor," a wideshot showing a large grassy expanse causes Crow to exclaim: "Wha-It's Iowa!"), and Michigan (at one point in episode 512, "Mitchell", Joel uses the name of a henchman to reference Benton Harbor, Michigan).

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Famous quotes containing the word midwestern:

    You can always tell a Midwestern couple in Europe because they will be standing in the middle of a busy intersection looking at a wind-blown map and arguing over which way is west. European cities, with their wandering streets and undisciplined alleys, drive Midwesterners practically insane.
    Bill Bryson (b. 1951)