Red Lobster Sizzles
A Review of Red Lobster, White Trash, and the Blue
Queenan, a successful columnist and film critic, begins his descent into pop culture with an innocent foray into the Broadway hit Cats. From there, he begins earnest research into "cultural undergrowth" with a visit to his local Red Lobster:
Queenan then seeks out what he considers the worst in popular entertainment, ever-resistant to what he considers to be its limited charms:
In his search for the best of the worst, he listens to Michael Bolton, watches Cannonball Run II and Love Story, and attends a John Tesh concert at Carnegie Hall:
As a reader, you can’t help but dislike Queenan for his consistent condemnation of pleasures which appeal to so many. So it’s with satisfaction, mid-book, that we witness Queenan get hooked: First, a Barry Manilow concert leaves him feeling admiration for, what he has to admit is, an excellent entertainer; second, he shakes hands with Geraldo Riviera at a live taping of his show; and then he marvels at the great value and service found at Sizzler.
Queenan gets a taste of how strung out he’s become in Branson, Missouri, a hellish Las Vegas East. Taking in show after show, he ends up on a highway median, in angst over his decision to leave Bobby Vinton to see Andy Williams across the street sing "Days of Wine and Roses."
Truly addicted now, Queenan spends an entire vacation in France sneaking away to watch American reruns. In an exhaustively funny passage, he is abducted by BOZO, a pro pop organization that seeks to tap into his vast pop knowledge. And after that, he finds a way...like Dorothy in Oz, to return to the sanity of his former highbrow brain. For those of us who can travel comfortably between top and pop culture, Red Lobster is a rewarding trip.
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