Originally published in the Grand Rapids Business Journal, February 26, 2007
When I first moved to West Michigan, Studio 28 in Wyoming was the premier theatre complex in the area, maybe the whole Midwest. With 20 screens and a central location on the main retail strip, 28th Street, Studio 28 was at the cusp of the megaplex boom.
But now, 20 years hence, new megaplexes have been built at new retail locations, and the glut of fresh screens is definitely hurting the former big dog. So in an effort to stay afloat, the owners petitioned the city of Wyoming to allow beer sales at the theatre. Part of this was to set themselves up to host banquets and events there. Makes sense. But mostly it’s about hoping that beer sales give them an edge on attracting movie goers. Wyoming, anxious to keep their shrinking retail business from further shrinkage, said okeydoke.
And this is the part of the story where we pass judgment. Go ahead. I did.
Done? Right. I actually had two judgment passes: First (as reflected in the comic), sharing a theatre with stupid people is bad enough, but stupid people with beer can’t help. Second, does the world really need another place to buy a $7 Budweiser? Yecch!
Confession: Not a week before I drew this, I sat in the State Theatre in Ann Arbor with my kids (because I had brought them there and bought their tickets) and watched three Beavis & Butthead cartoons roll across the screen. We were attending the Animation Show, a collection of recent animated features that otherwise don’t get widely seen. (The show itself had some very cool stuff!) Mike Judge, the creator of B&B, is one of the presenters, so I wasn’t surprised. It just wasn’t expected. They ran them as cartoons before the main show (like in olden days). Not a high point in my parenting career. Plus I was drunk. (Only the last bit isn’t actually true…)
And this is the part of the story where you get to pass judgment again. Go ahead, but this time, leave a comment….