4. Mystery Science Theater 3000
1988, KMTA; 1989-91, The Comedy Channel; 1991-96, Comedy Central; 1997-99, Syfy
What It's About: Space-traveling janitor Joel Robinson (Joel Hodgson) and later Mike Nelson are forced to watch terrible B movies like The Brain That Wouldn't Die along with their robot sidekicks a torture. They survive by heckling their way through the screenings (''Cruelty to small animals is one of little Bobby's few outlets'') and spawning endless catchphrases.
Why It's Cult: MST3K taught us that snarky commentary about media can be way more entertaining than the actual media a lesson that was subsequently taken to heart by Beavis and Butt-head, Talk Soup, Tosh.0, and every blog ever.
Secret Handshake: ''Deep Hurting.'' Melissa Maerz