The Return of Project Popcorn

Hey, guys! Have you seen this Russian Mystery Science Theater 3000 ripoff?! It’s totally weird! And, Hitler’s in it! I mean, Russia totally stole Everybody Loves Raymond, so why not MST3K, right?

Project Popcorn fan mail drawing

I mean, what’s the world comi– what’s that you say? It’s been out for a while? And, it’s not a ripoff, but a fan-made homage? Then how come I never saw it until today? Interesting…

Hey, guys! Ever wonder what happened to that Russian MST3K that came out a few years ago? It totally just dropped off the planet after GoogleVideo shifted from a video hosting platform to a video search function nobody uses. You used to be able to find edited versions of it on ru-tube, too, but now those links 404. The WayBack Machine didn’t seem to save the actual videos. The Archive Team and archive.org’s attempt to scrape Google Video for future generations only resulted in inaccessible “crawldata” files. If you dug hard enough, you could find some pretty bad copies of the edited versions on vk.com, but there was audio missing and you couldn’t see all of the parts without an account (and you probably didn’t have an account unless you had a Russian cell phone).

The original creators of Project Popcorn (that’s what they called it, except with a Russian accent) were caught off guard by the disappearance of the better quality, long versions. So, four months ago, Tim Chernov, who played the evil mad-scientist, Professor Zamyshlyavkin, ripped the vk.com quality versions and put them up on his YouTube channel while a search for the higher quality versions was conducted. The search went on. High and low. And, today (give or take) — success!

If you haven’t already had the chance to experience the Russian-language gift to MST3000 fandom that is Проект “Попкорн”, now’s your chance. Tim and Anton (Neumark, who played the human test-subject, Styopa Samakatov) have rediscovered the original files and have uploaded them to a special Project Popcorn YouTube channel. Give yourself 44 or 35 minutes to experience the full glory and higher bit-rate of Project Popcorn: ‪Ziolkovsky‬ or Project Popcorn: Gaboi, respectively.

Road to the Stars opening credits with Project Popcorn shadowrama

If you opt for the short versions, you’ll miss what they say when the film credits roll.

For those short on time, 19 or 12 minutes, respectively, can be saved by taking in the “short” versions. Both versions are on the channel. But, in saving those minutes, you will be sacrificing the lengthy opening credits of two examples of Soviet-era cinema, as well as the middle host segment of each episode. Are you really willing to miss what comes out of that bingo tumbler?!

Whatever you choose to do for your busy life, episodes of Project Popcorn are available again. The universe is no longer forced to watch only the theme song  and wonder. That is, until Google pulls the plug on YouTube. But that’ll never happen. Right?

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