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Paul Chaplin

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Comedian Writer Paul Chaplin

Paul Chaplin.

Paul Chaplin, writer and actor for "Mystery Science Theater 3000," was best known for his recurring characters Ortega, an inarticulate minion with hygiene issues, Pitch the Devil, and as one of the Observers.


The Chicago-area native wasn't always a comedy writer. He earned a Masters Degree from the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs and began his career as a community organizer in St. Paul, Minnesota. Eventually, finding little reward in his work, he decided to shake the job of "world savior" and pursue his notion of "always wanting to do something rowdy."

Chaplin made his first steps toward a career in comedy by performing standup at an open-mic call at the Minneapolis Comedy Gallery. Thinking that he'd get by on wit alone, Chaplin got on stage without a thing prepared and bombed miserably. Learning from past mistakes and not looking forward to a second lesson in absolute humiliation, Chaplin made his second standup appearance after writing his act first and, according to him, "killed."

While working the comedy club scene in Minneapolis, Chaplin eventually met Mary Jo Pehl and Mike Nelson. Nelson approached Chaplin about becoming a writer for MST3K during Season 3 and submitted him to a test in which he had to take home 10 minutes of the movie "Daddy-O" and give it the MST3K treatment. Chaplin passed with flying colors.

In a 1999 interview on, Chaplin talked about what he had originally written for the official MST3k movie, the distribution and handling of which he was disappointed with. In the same discussion, he also talked about what his contributions to the MST3k book The Amazing Colossal Episode Guide.

In 2007, when Best Brains head Jim Mallon unsuccessfully tried to relaunch the official MST3k site, Chaplin voiced Crow T. Robot (with James Moore as Tom Servo) in four brief Flash animations called The 'Bots Are Back previously made available on the site. The animations were reportedly critically panned.

Paul has been confirmed as a returning writer for the 2016 MST3K revival.

Guest appearances

[with minor editing]

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