Ed the Sock and Liana K., no strangers to being ripped off1, have ripped off Mystery Science Theater 3000 for their comeback. It had a rocky start last month and continues with an uneven mix of movies (from different genres), quips, and sketches.

With an episode due to be filmed at Polaris SF Con next weekend, we thought we’d post a discussion.

Is anyone watching? Does anyone plan to watch?

Clip below the cut.

Ed can still be funny, but he’s been less consistently funny with his latest show– and, to be honest, I thought he was wearing thin during the final years of Ed’s Night Party (Fromage was great, and should never have been canceled). At present, the banter just doesn’t reach the level of MST3K.

I also find the choice of films problematic. The most recent ep, for example, featured a low-grade rock ‘n’ roll film, Wild Guitar. Firstly, the film is already too much of a train wreck for anyone to do anything but stare. Secondly, the film itself tries to be funny. It fails, miserably– but mocking bad humor doesn’t work the way that mocking bad, self-serious SF or histrionic drama and horror does.

I genuinely like Ed and Red’s stuff; I hope they can turn this into something memorable, or find a more consistently entertaining project.

1. In 1997 Conan O’Brien booked Ed, then at the height of his Canadian fame, to appear on his show. Late Night abruptly withdrew the offer and then, later that year, introduced Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, a blatant (and less funny) imitation. Once Ed left MuchMusic, Fromage disappeared, to be replaced with the derivative Video on Trial.