Sci-Fi Drama: Army of Monkeys (SFドラマ 猿の軍団 SF Drama Saru no Gundan) was a 26 Episode Japanese science fiction series from 1974 based on the Planet of the Apes Film and TV franchise.
Produced by Tsuburaya Productions, the series was about a female scientist and two young children who have traveled through time where they arrive in a future ruled by Apes. The trio then struggle to find a way to get back home to the 20th century.
In 1987, Television producer Sandy Frank edited together several episodes of the series, including the first and last episodes, into a movie called "Time of the Apes". Syndicated to Broadcast and Cable outlets, this compilation film was also released on home video in mid-1988.
The movie was then "riffed" (twice) on Mystery Science Theater 3000, originally in the KTMA season in 1989, and then later as part of season 3 in 1991 on Comedy Central.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 (often abbreviated as MST3K) is an American cult television comedy series created by Joel Hodgson and produced by Best Brains, Inc., that ran from 1988 to 1999.
The series features a man and his robot sidekicks who are trapped on a space station by an evil scientist and forced to watch a selection of bad movies, often (but not limited to) science fiction B-movies. To keep sane, the man and his robots provide a running commentary on each film, making fun of its flaws and wisecracking (or "riffing") their way through each reel in the style of a movie-theater peanut gallery. Each film is presented with a superimposition of the man and robots' silhouettes along the bottom of the screen.
Series creator Hodgson originally played the stranded man, Joel Robinson, for five and a half seasons. When Hodgson left in 1993, series head writer Michael J. Nelson replaced him as new victim Mike Nelson, and continued in the role for the rest of the show's run.
During its eleven years, 198 episodes and one feature film, MST3K attained critical acclaim. The series won a Peabody Award in 1993, was nominated for two Emmy Awards (in the category of Outstanding Individual Achievement in Writing for a Variety or Music Program) in 1994 and 1995, and was nominated for a CableACE Award.
In 2007, James Poniewozik listed Mystery Science Theater 3000 as one of Time magazine's "100 Best TV Shows of All-TIME."