Saturday, September 30, 2006

Theater TV: An Old Idea That Still Rocks

The best time in front of a big screen may be watching college football games with a bunch rabid fans. But when the screen is REALLY BIG that fun is amplified by about twenty fold. My local theater, the great Studio 35, lets OSU Buckeye fans watch their beloved team along with 400 other or so nuts for free. They sell the beer, the pizza and, if the team is throttling the opposition, cheers of "OH-IO" careen throughout the theater. It's a blast and reminds me of Anna McCarthy's book, Ambient Televsion, where she discusses the way that closed-circuit television broadcasts of Ali fights in theaters operated as a an alternative public sphere of television viewing for African Americans. The difference is, of course, that the games I see have to do with "state pride", an underappreciated phenomenon in the US, but a real one nonetheless. In TV scholarship we see a lot of discussion about nation building and "National culture", but little about the local. While that deserves a longer piece than I can offer now, I just wanted to note that this might just be a good place to start.

Oh, and for my GF... "Go Bucks!"


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