First off: ★ = Original Essay, a la Gruber.
So I went to the movie theater today to see Hellboy II: The Golden Army, with the intent of ripping apart Stephen King’s new piece in Entertainment Weekly wherein he told people that they should feel lucky enough to be GOUGED for concession candy and they should be like him and buy a large popcorn ($7 @ Union Square 14th Street theater), and over-saturate it with the fake butter glop.
What I left with was enough ammo to shell King, as well as a few other ideas about what is going wrong in movie houses these days and having bought this damn domain name, I’ve decided to start a series of articles from the consummate movie goer’s P.O.V.. But this being the first, let’s go back to King.
This moment cemented King as Entertainment Weekly’s John McCain, or to be more specific EW’s Phil Gramm. He is so disconnected with the current state of society, wonder how this is enhanced by how much time he spends in his rich bitch seats at Fenway on the fucking base-line. He mentioned how his matinee seats are only 5 bucks, but I wonder how many people have matinee price theaters near them.
I’m sure that these matinee price theaters aren’t of the major brand theaters (Regal, Loews, AMC, whathaveyou), and he’s not using this article for any noble purpose like telling fans to support mom and pop theaters. This goes to the current debate between Stuart Scott of ESPN and the Deadspinners, wherein with access and the MSM connections come a lack of responsible journalism (see new issue of GQ). Not that EW is where people go for journalism, but this is a font that King has to pontificate, and he should be using it better.
Going back to King’s love of $4.50 gummi bears, the average bottom line attentive consumer knows they can get two different candy items from a nearby newstand for under two bucks. The even more on point movie watchers know to stop by their local drug store and get the same size candies from the concession stand for half the price.
I wonder how many people King is taking to the theater with him, or if he starves himself prior to screenings, because even a small popcorn these days is more than one person needs. If I’d asked for a large, as the guy in front of me did, I would have been handed a giant bucket o’ popped kernels.
This is not just another moment wherein I lose respect for King, but another reason to stop picking up EW. Also: their coverage of Katy Perry in their new issue loses points from their tally while Dr. Horrible coverage replenishes the loss. Next Friday, I’ll have more reasons to read or not to read their publication, and probably another movie to go see and explore the dynamics of the big screen houses. So we’ll have another report from the movie houses next weekend.
And finally, what’s my verdict on how to fix the movie theater? Obviously: Don’t Listen To Stephen King.