Joel Hodgson

Joel Hodgson


2/20/1960, Stevens Point,Wisconsin

Birth Name

Joel Gordon Hodgson



Also Known As

The Gizmocrat
out of 10
User Rating
22 votes


Joel Gordon Hodgson began his career as a stand-up comic, magician, and inventor before retiring at the age of 24 and moving back to his home state. Returning from exile in the late 1980s, Hodgson cemented his place in pop culture history by creating, writing and starring in…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Joel states the show The Children's Film Festival with Kukla, Fran and Ollie influenced the stucture of MST3K.

    • Joel is left-handed.

    • Joel Hodgson "It's time for me to hang up my red jump suit and move behind the camera. Besides, there's an old show business adage I once heard Adam West say: 'Stay in the same costume and before you know it, you end up signing pictures at an R.V. show.' Maybe it was Clayton Moore, now that I think of it."

    • Joel Hodgson "I spend a lot of time thinking about what I do and how it fits into the scheme of things. I won't do something just because it's funny."

    • After MST3K, Joel formed Visual Story Tools with his brother Jim.

    • Brandon Tartikoff's office (at NBC) contacted Joel, and offered a starring role in a new NBC sitcom called High School USA, which Hodgson astutely pegged as "a Fast Times at Ridgemont High rip-off,". Joel turn it down.

    • Joel openly admits that he hates the Hollywood "system."

    • Joel became enemies with stand-up comedian Gallagher after finding him digging through Joel's props without permission.

    • Joel made five appearances on David Letterman and four on Saturday Night Live.

    • Joel attended Bethel College in St. Paul, MN, first as a drama major, then as a speech communications major, but dropped out.

    • Joel graduated Ashwaubenon High School in Green Bay, WI.

    • During the first season of MST3K, he went by his real name as the show's host. In the second season he started using the surname 'Robinson'.

    • Many of the inventions featured in the MST3K Invention Exchange were props that he had personally built and used in his stand up comedy routines. When he left, the exchange was quickly discontinued since the inventions were usually of his devising.

    • When the Mystery Science Theater 3000 theatrical film was being made, the studio wanted him to come back and do the film as a kind of origin story for the show, but he declined.

    • Joel is inventor of "Gizmonics Institute."

    • Joel is 5'10" (1.78m) tall.

    • Joel's nickname to his co-workers is The Gizmocrat.

    • Joel not only helped write the lyrics and music to "Love Theme from Mystery Science Theater 3000", he also provided the vocals as a fake band called "Joel and the Joels."

    • On January 9th, 1997, the Dallas Video Festival presented its first-ever "Ernie Kovacs Innovation in Television Award" to Joel.

    • Joel never goes into intrenet chat sites as himself because he hates being bombarded with questions about MST3K.

    • Joel got the charactor name of Gypsy of MST3K from a pet turtle he had.

    • Joel states the name of Tom Servo on MST3K came from a vending machine at the Southdale shopping center in Minneapolis that was called Servo.

    • Joel said he named the MST3K charactor Crow after a friend in college who had a friend named Tommy Crow he had all these adventures with.

    • Joel states the biggest inspiration for MST3K was the Douglas Trumble film "Silent Running."

    • Joel has admitted to having many disagreements with Kevin Murphy on the future of MST3K.

    • Joel Hodgson said he left MST3K after it became popular because he was not comfortable with acting.

    • In 1983, Joel Hodgson had a run in with the FBI after leaving a "bomb prop" from an SNL show in his hotal room.

  • Quotes

    • Joel Hodgson: I was always fond of science fiction shows with numbers attached to their titles, like Space: 1999 and Sealab 2020, which I think was a Hanna Barbera cartoon - anyway, you know what I mean.

    • Joel Hodgson: Have you seen the new (1996) "Batman" movie, I mean, it's getting to the point where they're just making that stuff up.

    • Joel Hodgson: I spend a lot of time thinking about what I do and how it fits into the scheme of things. I won't do something just because it's funny.

    • Joel Hodgson: It's time for me to hang up my red jump suit and move behind the camera. Besides, there's an old show business adage I once heard Adam West say: "Stay in the same costume and before you know it, you end up signing pictures at an R.V. show." Maybe it was Clayton Moore, now that I think of it.

    • Joel Hodgson: I mean, Mystery Science Theater could not be written on a piece of paper and given to somebody. It would have to be seen.

    • Joel Hodgson: When we did the pilot, I sort of pictured this guy pirating a signal and then this story unfolding of him building this satellite and these robots and watching these bad movies.

    • Joel Hodgson: Besides, it doesn't make any sense to have these characters living in the year 3000 when all their points of reference are from the pop culture of the 80's and the 90's.

    • Joel Hodgson: Beanie and Cecil was the first cartoon I remember watching and I think there are analogies.

    • Joel Hodgson: But after that, I was extremely happy with the story and the look of the show at the beginning of season two - everything was working together. I felt like it was finished conceptually.

    • Joel Hodgson: But if you think you aren't creative that's cool, too. I think being around people who aren't creative is kind of refreshing and nice.

    • Joel Hodgson: I didn't walk up to Jim Mallon with a finished script and a show bible for MST3K. I just had a few drawings of a set and some robots and a some silhouettes in theatre seats.

    • Joel Hodgson: Well, really the way worked was that I had probably built fifty robots before Mystery Science Theater, and I had sold them in a store in Minneapolis in a store called Props, which was kind of a high end gift shop.

    • Joel Hodgson: These production deadlines are murder, especially if you're a group of people who had never really built a TV series before.

    • Joel Hodgson: Then a friend of Jim's suggested we make a theme song to explain the story, and this is where the Mads came from. Josh and I wrote it into the theme song.

    • Joel Hodgson: The internet is a total inversion of television. It's the opposite.

    • Joel Hodgson: It's always a great compliment when I find out that some of my work has inspired someone else to try something creative.

    • Joel: Sometimes I go into my own little world...but that's okay, they know me there.

    • Joel: Being an oddity doesn't bother me, as long as I'm a thought provoking one.

    • Joel: By day, I'm a clever comic magician, by night...Agent J.

  • Joel Hodgson is the creater of Mystery Science Theater 3000. My favorite show EVER. He used to host the show with his two robot buddies Crow and Tom Servo (my favorite) He is the laid back kinda guy who you like to see on your favorite show.moreless

    Joel Hodgson is great! I think that he is a genius for one because he created my favorite show..MST3K! For two I think that his comedy is great. He is always acting like he took some Xanax or something because he is always really laid back and he talks softly. I wish he would have stayed on the show.. I think that it would have stayed on air longer if he was still the host. No offense to Mike the second host of the show for the later years. Mike is funny to, but after years of watching Joel and the bots has made me biast I suppose for Joel. I actually used to have a childhood crush on Joel. Silly I know. PLEASE come back Joel! Your fans miss you!!moreless
  • Joel makes something out of nothing.

    Joel Hodgson is a real American icon. Not a icon driven by popularity, but by originality. Coming up from nothing, Joel took what he knew and made a very talent show, Mystery Sceince Theatre 3000. Starting up as a TV whisper, the show clawed itself into American culture as the ultimate TV Cult Classic. Many may not "get" the show, but most will come to the conclusion the the show's importance and loveable nature. Joel infused into it a mixture adult understanding of wicked humor with the ability to have a child like veiw. With 11 season, remeber there was a season 0, it is no wonder why Joel and his baby MST3K is no one you can dismiss.moreless