Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Portland is watching "The End of Suburbia"

Found originally on New York Magazine's Vulture Blog.

Full-sized original at Slacktory

Flavorwire reproduced this graphic and added their own commentary.
[W]e’re fascinated by Slacktory’s United States of Netflix Local Favorites. Although some picks are obviously location-appropriate (New York gets New York Stories, Hawaii has Hawaii’s Last Queen, the formerly “Wild West” is flush with Westerns, etc.), there are surprising picks, too: viewers in Maine, for instance, are apparently big fans of My Own Private Idaho. But our favorite observation concerns the popularity of ’90s classics (Singles, Drugstore Cowboy) in the Pacific Northwest. Perhaps Portlandia was right: The dream of the ’90s is alive in Portland!
In the one comment to their post so far, I pointed out that they were misreading the map and missing what Portland was really watching.
Look at little closer at that map. It seems to show that Portland is watching “The End of Suburbia,” which is not about the dreams of the 90s, but the nightmares of the 00s. On the other hand, I shouldn’t be surprised, as Portland has the strictest anti-suburban-sprawl land use policies in the nation. Now, if only the rest of the country would watch that film, starting with the people in San Diego and Tucson watching “The Burbs.”*
I'm doing my part to make sure the rest of the country watches "The End of Suburbia"; I show it to my environmental science classes every semester--in fact, I'll be showing it to them next week. Even though the film was shot in 2003-2004, it becomes more accurate all the time--except for what it had to say about natural gas peaking. Conventional gas peaked, but fracking has increased gas production above the previous peak. The next film I'm going to add to the curriculum will be "Gasland." That should make for a good follow-up.

*I didn't get a response at Slacktory, but I posted a similar comment over at NYMag's Vulture and got a trollish response. I replied in kind.
@NeonVincent -
consider this comment me internet-punching you in the face for your comment.
@flummoxes - Remember that hate isn't the opposite of love, apathy is. At least you're not apathetic!
I hope you readers aren't, either.