Archive for the Cinemassacre/James Rolfe Category

Nerdy Monday 24: 2nd and Charles

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Crash Bandicoot, N64, Nerdy Monday, NES, Playstation, PS2, PS3, Retro, T.V. shows, Video Game, XBox, XBox 360 with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2014 by Divide By Zero

I am finally going to be writing more regularly.  I had a lot of stuff gonig on these past few months (years, really), and I thank you to everyone who has visited my site during the hiatus.

I wanted to come back on a Nerdy Monday, because that (in all honesty) was my favorite post to write each week.  Since the last time I posted a Nerdy Monday article, I’ve moved.  Therefore the locality of the blog articles to be written are going to pertain mostly to Northern Virginia/Washington D.C.  For some articles, like the top 10 lists, locality won’t matter.  However, for this re-introduction special to Nerdy Monday XXIV, I’m going to be talking about Heaven on Earth.  Or simply by its name: 2nd & Charles.  Particularly the one in my home town of Woodbridge, VA.  How can you not love a place that puts this up on its facebook page:

It might be photoshopped, but this is ALWAYS what I see pulling into the parking lot.

It might be photoshopped, but this is ALWAYS what I see pulling into the parking lot.

For those of you who have never heard of a “2NC”, allow me to explain;  It’s a sort of 2nd hand bookstore, music store, game stop (more like a now defunked Funcoland), toy store, and comic book store all rolled into one.  Personally, I go there for the video games.  Like a moth to a flame.  Because they buy back older books, vinyls, comic books, and everything else, they have a lot of old video games.  I’m talking about original Gameboy, all the original Nintendo, Sega Master System, Genesis, Game Gear, Game Cube, etcetera, all the way up through the X-BONE & the PS4.  What’s not to love?!  I’ve told my fiancee that I could spend hundreds of hours, and thousands of dollars there, and it’s true.  I have to give myself a limit on how much I am going to spend before we even leave to go there, and I almost never stay below budget.

If you haven’t liked them on facebook yet, do it!  If you haven’t subscribed to their e-mail list, you’re missing out.  On facebook, they put up all sorts of pictures of new items they bought back, or deals they have on clearance items, it’s wonderful.  When I have nothing to do, while I’m out running errands with my family (that don’t directly involve me or require my help) I get dropped off there and 3 hours goes by in the blink of an eye.  Also on facebook, you’ll receive special promotions they have at the buyback counter (another one of my favorite departments).  The most recent one I participated in was:

LAST DAY to receive DOUBLE CREDIT when you trade in your used#videogame #consoles, #games, and #accessories! Drop by before 7pm and SCORE BIG with buyback today!
#retro #pikachu #snes #nes #n64 #nintendo #gamecube #xbox #xboxone#xbox360 #playstation #PS4 #PS3 #ps2 #sony #atari #ds #dsi#smashbrothers #destiny #nostalgia #woodbridge #virginia #nova
Photo: LAST DAY to receive DOUBLE CREDIT when you trade in your used #videogame #consoles, #games, and #accessories! Drop by before 7pm and SCORE BIG with buyback today!
#retro #pikachu #snes #nes #n64 #nintendo #gamecube #xbox #xboxone #xbox360 #playstation #PS4 #PS3 #ps2 #sony #atari #ds #dsi #smashbrothers #destiny #nostalgia #woodbridge #virginia #nova
 [Author: excerpt from 2NC’s facebook page]
Yes, DOUBLE credit for any old video games and consoles.
If you know me personally, AT ALL, you know that I’ve amassed quite a vintage video game collection.  Nothing crazy, or youtube worthy, but nobody needs 6 Sega Genesis consoles, all of the same model.  Even worse, I felt I didn’t need more than 2 PS1’s seeing as how my PS2’s and PS3 play PS1 games.  Also, all the duplicate copies of games I have had to go.  Opportunities like this don’t happen very often, so for most people, it’s a way to streamline your ’80’s & ’90’s arcade, as well as build up some store credit at a great place like 2NC.  What I want to do with my collection (and your plan for yours may be different) is to get rid of all of my cheaper games, and focus on getting the good games that everyone remembers.  OddWorld: Abe’s Exodus, Contra, Commando, Final Fantasy VII, Anything Crash Bandicoot.  I know I’ll never have a collection like my mentor, The Angry Video Game Nerd’s, but I’d like my collection to make people a LITTLE envious!
This place seriously has something for everyone.  Autographed & classic books, vinyl records and CDs out the ying-yang, every Wednesday is New Comic Book Day, movies and TV shows on DVD, toys, collectibles, video games, and a ton more.  I spent close to 100 dollars one time on stuff I didn’t even know I needed!  A tetris Ice cube tray, space invaders alarm clock, video game cases, DVDs I wanted in my library for $2.50 a piece, a poster that went perfectly in my living room (before my fiancee told me to move it).  Batman stuff, comic books, t-shirts, and a joker thumb drive are on my “To Get” list as well.  I know they don’t need any advertising from me, and I’m not getting paid by anyone to write this article, I just genuinely love 2nd & Charles.  So, like I said, if you haven’t checked it out, check it out, like them on facebook and join their mailing list.  When they buy back things, you can get cash too (though not as much as if you got store credit), so it’d be nice for someone who wants to find a good home for the junk they don’t use.
I’m probably going to be writing about 2nd & Charles for a couple of more Nerdy Monday spots, so I’ll keep you up to date on what’s going on there.  It’s not lazy using the same topic or subject, there’s just way too much at that store to put in one blog article.  Until then!
Say whaaaaat?

Say whaaaaat?

 

Holla!

Holla!

Nerdgasm.

Nerdgasm.

Whoa!

Whoa!

See you at 2ND & Charles!

 

*All images obtained using “2NC Woodbridge” Facebook Page.  Link to Cinemassacre used without permission*

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Nerdy Monday 23: A Tribute to the Sega flops.

Posted in 1990's, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), Nerdy Monday, Retro, Video Game on April 12, 2011 by Divide By Zero

There are some video game systems sought after by collectors now for being huge failures.  There are many, but I’m going to focus on the 3 that I’ve had the most contact with.  So let’s get right down to it with…

The Sega Saturn:

Flop.

This system made its debut back in 1995, and was discontinued 3 short, disappointing years later.  It was hugely popular in Japan, but never reached anything substantial in America because of the debut of the Sony Playstation, and one of my personal all time favorites, the Nintendo 64.  It came out as a 32-bit system, which was pretty cool at the time, I guess, but it took too long to develop, and Nintendo’s N64 was released in 1996 with DOUBLE THE BITS! Therefore twice the graphics.  I mean, the Sony Playstation was released a year before the Saturn as a 32-bit system and somehow that even looked a lot better on screen.  not to mention the controls were more fluid, and the games were a lot more enjoyable.  Speaking of controls…

What the hell is this?!

I bought my Saturn on eBay for $3.24 with $3.00 shipping.  It came with all the hook-ups, a controller, and a game.  And I still believe to this day I got ripped off.  The games are shoddy at best, and it just makes me want to play something that at least has some semblance of a video game.

Rating: -3 Stars.  Horrible.

The Sega 32x:


How do you turn a 16-bit system into a 32-bit system?  You build an add on for it that makes no sense whatsoever!  The 32x plugs into the top of a Sega Genesis as if it were a game.  Then you have to run a special cable from the back of the Genesis to the back of the 32x.  THEN you have to run an a/v cable from the 32x to the TV, and STILL the 32x has it’s own ac adapter that has to be plugged into the wall.  The Genesis also has to be plugged in.  Why so many cables?  This should have been its own system.  I think James Rolfe explains it best, please give this video a watch:

Rating: One half star.  There may have been one or two cool games.

The Sega Dreamcast:


Okay, this one wasn’t really a flop.  In fact it has its own cult-like following and is getting more and more home made or “homebrewed” games on it every week.  Check out http://www.dcisozone.com to see if I’m lying.  I love this system and the many, many games it has on it. It’s fabulous, and worth every penny of the $20 (or so) you’ll spend on it.  And the games that you download and burn are perfectly legal to (or so I’ve heard, I am not liable for what you do) burn.  Sega isn’t making any money on it.. no one is making any money on it anymore, so why would anyone care?

Rating: 4 Stars, shouldn’t have been a flop.

The Sega CD:

Remember this thing?  How awful was it?  See how fast it takes you to download an emulator for this system in its entirety, and tell me it isn’t a pile of poop.  At the time, it was innovative and made it able to have movies segway from one scene in the game to the next instead of a series of text boxes.  That didn’t make the games any better though.  Like all of the other Sega flops, namely the Saturn, the controls were crappy, and it made you want to maim yourself with your controller… or at the very least strangle someone else with the cord.

This is the abomination you had if you had both the 32x and the CD attachment.

Rating:  -1 Star… it doubled as a CD player!

Overall though, Sega is still a widely successful company, even if Nintendo had to put them in their place back around 1999 or so.  It remains to be the biggest 3rd party contractor to Nintendo and comes up with almost half of the 3rd party designed games.  Way to go Sega…  I hope you jump back into the hardware market soon!

 

There will be another installment of flops, next week.

The jester.

 

*All images and videos are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google Image Search.  All videos obtained through Youtube Search.*

Top 10 Tuesdays 12: Vids to play instead of watching Twilight

Posted in 2000's, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), Fan Mail, Modern, movies, Twilight on February 10, 2011 by Divide By Zero

This is my first official fan suggested Top 10 Tuesday!  Thank you goes out to Ashleigh  from Ft. Lauderdale.  I know right!  It’s awesome to think that the only girl on the face of the planet that doesn’t like that God-awful saga, is a “humongus [sic] fan of [my] site :):):):):):)!!!”  Very awesome to know.  Work on your spelling and grammar, and calm down a little bit on the emoticons a tad bit, Ashleigh, and I might let you come back more often.

Down to business!  As Ashleigh and I can attest, there’s not too many situations worse than watching any of the Twilight movies.  Well there are, let me see if I can think of some…

Being forced to watch one of those movies.  The bubonic plague was pretty bad, I’m pretty sure watching Twilight is worse than that though.  Having a friend who is all over everything about Twilight.. you just know those kids are going to grow up wrong, in some way/shape/form.  Seriously.. teams?!  There are flocks of girls that chose sides of the movie.  They want to be Bella, and they either want to hook up with a vampire or a werewolf.  Hmm, necrophilia or beastiality.. which one should I pick?  Get outta here with that!  NOT ON MY BLOG!  NOT TODAY PEOPLE!

That brings us to…

The Top 10 Video Games to Play Instead of watching Twilight

I don’t even know why I’m making a “top 10” about this.  I should just say.. All of them.  Every video game ever created, thought of, or fan-made.  Playing any video game is better than suffering through any of those 2 hour (+/-) let-downs.  BUT.  Since this is Top 10 Tuesday, here we go…

#10.  Top Gun  (NES)

Ah yes, this old jewel.  The horrible game based off of a pretty bad movie.  Who else saw this movie and thought that the only good part of it was the very last scene, right before Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer looked like they were about to make out?  And in this game… try landing your plane on that air craft carrier.  You almost have to be a pilot in real life to get that right.  Horrible game.  Better than Twilight.

#9.  Shaq-Fu  (SNES/Genesis)

How do you capitalize on a mediocre basketball franchise name?  With a disappointing game kids will yell and scream for, and then after they get home, they will yell and scream because of the terribleness they just experienced.  This game is so terrible, there was actually a website dedicated to finding and destroying every copy of this game in existence.  Terrible game.  Still better than watching Twilight.

#8.  ANY game released on the Nintendo Virtual Boy  (VB)

It’s hanging it’s head in shame. It knows how bad it is.

This system is the epitome of a flop in the video game world.  It was so bad, it was discontinued (AKA killed) in less than a year after it’s release.  The entire library of video games can be held in one hand.  I think there are only 11 or 12 games total, and they’re about the size of original game boy games.  Almost without exception, there is NO virtual reality involved with any of the games.  The name of the system is Virtual Boy.  And there’s no virtual reality.  Here is a picture of me after that sinks in:

My mind was blown. Is what I'm saying.

Crap-tastic.  Even so! Better than Twilight.

#7.  Rambo  (NES)

You know that feeling you get when you pick your nose, and you slowly pull out that one big juicy booger that’s hooked into your fingernail?  You know what I’m talking about… the one booger that’s really long and feels like it’s suction-cupped to the base of your brain?  This game is a playable version of that feeling.  It makes you cringe, your eyes water, and the only way to describe it is just… agony.  Unnecessary agony.  Kind of like Twilight.  Except it’s a lot better than Twilight.

#6.  Little Red Hood  (NES)

I can’t even begin to explain how unfortunate and appalling this game is.  Let me let a professional explain this one.

http://screwattack.com/videos/AVGN-Little-Red-Hood

That video is definitely worth a watch or three.  Check out how atrocious it is (*whispers* still better than Twilight).

#5.  Seaman  (Dreamcast)

What is going on here?  Piss-poor, NEXT!  Twilight is actually starting to look pretty good.  Wait, what did I just say?  Maybe this list is getting too long.  Ugh, let’s see what else is scraping the bottom of the crap bucket.

#4, #3, #2, #1, and the WINNER!  Everything on the Atari Jaguar.

In my opinion, this system is worse than the virtual boy.  In fact, I’d take the eye strain and potential seizures the virtual boy induces over the masterpiece of God-awfulness this thing puts on the screen.  I’ve actually wanted to own one of these systems just for novelty-sake, and I can’t bring myself to spend around $120 on a system that was only on the market for a day and a half, or whatever.  It was released and the entire program was shut down in half as much time as the virtual boy.  Every game on here is rotten to the core.  They’re hideous beyond belief.  They are obnoxious, dreadful, abhorrent abominations that need to be burned, buried, pee’d on, and forgotten.  With that being said, I will STILL take 2 hours of Cybermorph over sitting through an entire loathesome installment of the Twilight saga.

Whew, that was a lot.  But, it needed to be said.  I’m glad I was the one to say it.

The Jester.

[Please send all hate mail or bashing of my post to delorganization@gmail.com.  I will promptly ignore it.  Good day.]

*All images are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google Image Search.  Also, thank you to James Rolfe/the AVGN/cinemassacre.com for the great content.*

Top 10 Tuesdays: Thanksgiving Week Special!

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, Alcohol Involved, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Forgotten, Halo, Modern, N64, NES, PS2, Retro, Video Game, XBox, Zombies Ate My Neighbors on November 23, 2010 by Divide By Zero

Thanksgiving is here again.  A lot of the “Early Birds” are doing Christmas shopping now, or are anxious to stay up for 36 hours straight and hit all the sales on Black Friday.  This week, families are relocating to other parts of the country for days on end.  Most of us are going to be engrossed in football, and gorging themselves on food until they are legally comatose.  It’s all good times.

In between my gravy-induced black outs, I like to hit up some video games.  Especially if we have little kids, cousins and such, at the house, I like to get them involved.  As many kids as possible.  The more the merrier.  So here are my…

Top 10 Video Games to Play… During Thanksgiving Week.

#10.  Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers.  (NES)


This is an easy to play, fun, nostalgic game.  The game play is smooth, and it’s pretty easy to do well throughout the entire game.  It’s last on the list only because it’s a 2 player game.  Two players only?  We live in a world where we can play with anyone from anywhere in the world!  Yes, and that’s all well and good, but Thanksgiving is a time for family.  No matter how weird they are, it’s always better to spend time with the family than with strangers who have an internet connection.  Suck it up.

#9.  Starfox 64. (N64)

This is an oldie but a goodie.  It helped define the Nintendo 64, as much as the original Starfox helped shape the SNES.  It was an instant classic.

Pictured: The good old days.

This is so low on the list, because this one is only a one player game.  I’m only taking into account the campaign mode of the games for this list.  Yes you can compete against each other in Starfox 64, but when you’re with the family you want to move towards a common goal, rather than destroy each other (which is also fun too).  The good thing about this game is that even if you haven’t played it in 10 years, you can beat it in under an hour.  Also, even the younger kids will remember this game.  Most of them have probably played it.  It’s easily substituted so you can hand off your controller smoothly and get to the kitchen before the last turkey leg is gone.

#8.  Duck Hunt. (NES)

LOOK AT THE PIXELS!

If you have the means, this is totally worth it.  This is also only a 2 player game.  THAT’S RIGHT!  Two players, baby!  Did you know that?  If you plug a regular NES controller into the 2nd port, the second player can control the Ducks!  How’s that for a family get together for Thanksgiving?  “You be a duck, and I will shoot you”.  It doesn’t get any better.  This game is also easily substitutable, and it gives an opportunity for the older kids to teach the younger kids what they played when they were growing up.

#8.  Zombies Ate My Neighbors.  (SNES/Genesis)

I did a whole write up on this game.  So I’m kind of biased towards it.  It’s a classic, and it’s perfect for right around Thanksgiving.  All the kids are getting off of their Halloween buzz, and they like seeing all the monsters in one of the games they’re playing.  You can easily learn to play this game in a matter of seconds which makes controller hand-offs really easy.  It’s still two player, but you can let kids play, or if you are surrpunded by adults, you can make a drinking game out of it.

#7.  Marvel Vs. Capcom.  (Dreamcast)

This game made the list because there is something memorable for each age group.  There are easily recognizable characters.  The fights are quick, and the game is addicting.  All the ingredients you need for a room full of people.  I think this is only a 2 player game, but it’s a button-masher and Marvel Vs. Capcom 1 & 2 are pretty much the same game.  This is good if you have about 10 people in a room and they all want to play something.

#6.  Powerstone. (Dreamcast)


This game has all the same qualities you find in Marvel Vs. Capcom, but it’s a 4 player game, and it’s even easier to learn.  There is so much beginner’s luck involved with playing this game, it’s un-comprehend-able.  This is truly one you have to just check out.  And come on, get a nice Dreamcast for about $20, and all the games for free?  This is a game that is both retro and modern.  You can’t beat that.

#5.  Halo. (XBox)

Pictured: The most epic, of the epic.

I’ll be honest, I’m pretty biased about this game.  If I were being honest to myself, this game would make number 1 every week on any top 10 list I’ve ever done, or any I will ever do.  The build up of this game when it was new and “all the rage”, the excitement that came with it, was amazing.  For you younger kids, you had to be there.  It was the only reason I bought an XBox, originally.  But it’s great, like I said, if you have the means you can have up to 16 players (if you have 4 tv’s lying around, and a hub… you’re in good shape.  Now, if only I had 15 friends that wanted to hang around me long enough to get through a round.  It’s also weird, the thing about halo, and any alien game all the way back to space invaders are categorized as favorites among people with Xenophobia; the fear of foreigners.  What a perfect game to play while celebrating the British taking a country away from the natives, and calling it their own — creating a new nation/nationality with it?  This is one that everyone will enjoy.  It takes a while to pick up the controls, but it’s well worth it.  And there’s never really a bad time to play it.  Thanksgiving or not, pick up a copy of this, and it’s game on, baby!

#4.  007 Goldeneye.  (N64)

Remember when Pierce Brosnan was on top of the world?

Who can say ‘no’ to this?  Everyone loves 007!  Or at least everyone knows about 007.  It’s great for the kids to play, as the N64 is within their grasp, it’ll bring the 20/30-somethings back to the past, and it will give the older people in the room something to watch.  This game I think helped make the N64 what it was.  It was a yard stick for all 007 games that followed it.  It’s up to 4 players, so it’s great for getting out frustration with your little nephews, or cousins.  Shoot’em in the face!  That’ll show them to take the last of the stuffing.

#3.  Rockband.  (XBox 360)

Making tweens think they can start a band, since its release date.

You knew this game was going to make the list.  I haven’t been to a party that didn’t have this all set up since it came out.  Personally, I hate it, but I have it at my house.  Just in case a party breaks out, it’s there, in a box, in the closet.  This game, everyone knows how to play, but no one is good at.  People pick up the mic, and they can’t sing.  The quiet guy in the corner can play the guitar on expert and get 99% or better on every song, but show him a real guitar and he scratches his head.  The drums are okay, because it’s kind of similar to the real thing.  It’ll make for some good stories later.  Either way, play it if you’re into it, if you’re not, skip ahead to….

#2.  Mario Kart 64.  (You guessed it: N64)

Need I say more?  4 players of competitive Thanksgiving-y goodness.  Everyone loves it, everyone can play it, and everyone will have a good time.  The only thing you have to worry about is gravy on your controllers.  Gross.

#1, and the winner this week.  Guitar Hero 1 or 3: Legends of Rock.  (PS2)

Awesome classic, I like this game.  It takes a while to get used to, but it’s a great way to bond and everyone will try it at least once.  Later on you can say to your uncle Silas: “Whoa dude, you totally melted face on that solo.”  Because I mean, who gets to say that to their uncle?  And more importantly, who has an uncle named “Silas”?  Your family is weird.  It’s also got a little retro mixed in, because of the songs, but it’s more modern than anything.  And I’ve been told if you stare at the screen for long enough, you get some really trippy visual effects that are always good in a party-like setting.

There you have it.  My top 10 best games to play for Thanksgiving.  Pick one and try it out.  Or don’t.  I already got your page view, so if you don’t like my advice, come back next week.  Another list, another 10, another category.

I’ll see you by the fridge, I’ll be the one with a guitar hero guitar strapped to my back.

The Jester. 


*All pictures are property of their respective owners, and may be subject to copyright laws.  Images obtained through Google Image Search.*

A Downhome Diamond in the Rough

Posted in Cameo Theatre, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Pocohontas Hale, The Black Shawl on August 25, 2010 by Divide By Zero

Kickin’ it Old School, All Classy Like.

This is an article I’ve wanted to write for a long time.  I’ve been trying to line up a supervised tour for myself so I could include some current interior pictures of The Cameo Theater in downtown Bristol, VA.  I’ve only found one short review of it online in which the writer stated that the public rarely gets access to the inside.  He is absolutely right.  I’ve tried for weeks now making phone calls every day to get inside for merely an hour.  I haven’t had any call backs yet.  It’s a very mysterious place, and the history of it is very rich.  I don’t know exactly why it is defunct right now, but all I see is enormous potential for a very sophisticated, very fun, very profitable business.

The Cameo Theater.  What’s that?

It is a vintage theater on the Virginia side of State Street in historic downtown Bristol.  In talking with some very prominent Bristol/Abingdon socialites, I have found that the Cameo used to have a strong rivalry with the Paramount theater.  They used to try and steal customers from one another, sometimes even having people who worked for one theater spend a few minutes inside the lobby of the other, only to vomit out front to discourage people from eating at the rival snack bar.  This was in hopes of getting people to leave the Paramount to come to the Cameo, or vice-versa.  It was awesome guerilla marketing and sneaky backstabbing tactics that ran rampant in the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s.

From the top!

Before it was the Cameo Theater, there was a business on that property called Little Hell.  It was the largest prostitution house in Bristol’s history.  I couldn’t find any dates of operation, but I know that more recently it changed ownership and became The Black Shawl.  It was headed by Pocahontas Hale, who was a Madam as well as a Medicine Woman taught in Cherokee spirituality.  The story goes that she always made her herbal remedies by herself, and never wrote down any of her recipes.  Local doctors, dentists, and pharmacists would buy her potions, carefully peel off her labels, and replace them with their own.  Madam Hale made more money with her herbal medicine than with prostitution, but never kept any more than $100 in the bank at any time.  After her death, local townspeople plundered her brothel to try to find the rest of her money.  No one found anything, until one night a regular John came in after sunset and left before the break of dawn.  Soon afterward he had a lavish mansion built, so he is believed to be Pocahontas Hale’s sole beneficiary.

It is also noteworthy that Madam Hale got in legal trouble for having a 15 year old girl on her staff.  She stated that the employee claimed to be 22 years old.  The case was dismissed as the jury decided that the girl could pass for being 22.  The girl got a job at another brothel, and soon after that 2 of the jurors who dismissed the case against Madam Hale were caught visiting the 15 year old girl (to see if she was as wild as she was described in court).

Intermission

After the death of Pocahontas Hale, The Black Shawl was torn down.  The neo-deco Cameo Theater was built a little while afterward, and has been there ever since.  I’m a skeptic, but there have been reports of a black figure circling the theater that resembles Madam Hale.  There has never been a formal paranormal investigation, and I have never seen it (and I spend quite a bit of time downtown), so I can’t say anything about that.  As far as I can tell, The Cameo shut down regular operation around 1990.  The only review I can find is from a local man who wishes The Cameo would open its doors once again.  All he says is “I watched Batman here for the first time long ago, and that was a great experience,”  among a few other blurbs.  I understand that now the Cameo is owned by a religious group here in town and only use The Cameo as a base for their radio station WCHB.

Next Curtain Goes Up [hopefully]

Personally, I really wish The Cameo would open its doors again too.  There is so much potential there!  There are local theater groups; also, there are 2 colleges very close by with numerous drama/theater students who would love the chance to perform on a stage like The Cameo.  Not only that, both ETSU and UVa Wise are within an hour and a half away.  Both of which have fantastic actors who would also love to perform in front of the 500+ seats of The Cameo one weekend a semester.

Seeing as how there is a projection screen giving The Cameo the ability to play movies, there are a million ways to turn that into a fun place for Bristoleans to go on the weekends.  There could be a different theme every month;  Romantic “chick-flicks” in early Spring time and  Christmas movies all December long!  Superhero movies in September!  There could be a Monster Madness (such as the one found at Cinemassacre.com by the incredible James Rolfe) during every day of October.  It could showcase all of the old nostalgic horror movies that are incredibly corny by today’s standards.  Even the really old scary movies like the ones they would play and hook up a pulley system to swing skeletons, bats, and spiders out over the audience.  I think they call that “Ye Olde Timey 3-D”.  It would be a blast!  Not only that, but it could play newly released movies.  It’d be nice to see a new movie in a vintage art-deco theater.  There would be an air of prestige that cinemas like Tinseltown or the Abingdon Theater couldn’t bring to movie-goers.  Local children could put on plays there and charge a discounted admission to raise money for their schools.  It would be a whole lot better than their parents trying to sell those stupid candy bars at their work place for the same reason.  It would be perfect for local up-and-coming bands, or stand up comedians.  I know there are probably a few handfuls of aspiring film-makers in the Tri-Cities, without a way to show off their work.  With a little finagling of the equipment The Cameo already has, I’m sure there could be a time where once a month there could be an independent film shown before the feature presentation of the evening.  I could go on and on, the possibilities of that theater are seriously endless.

If it were up to me, I would market The Cameo more towards younger crowds.  The Paramount is right down the street and is very sophisticated, and you only see the dapper-est of the dapper (mostly older crowds) coming out after a performance.  Besides, there should be more things for teenagers and twenty-somethings to do in Bristol besides go to Johnson City for entertainment.  And with a calendar full of movies, local college and grade school performances, along with seasonal artists, a few comedians, local bands, and poetry readings, maybe an “open mic night” every once in a while, who wouldn’t attend?  It could open doors for many talented young men and women around the Tri-Cities, as well as add some culture to an otherwise stale demographic.  Isn’t that what we want?  Shouldn’t Bristol be proud of the youth that is born and raised here?  Wouldn’t it be spectacular to see a crop of varied artists break into the culture scene across the nation representing Bristol and the Tri-Cities?  I know I’d love to see it, and I can see it, slightly.  Every time I walk by The Cameo, hold my hand up to the door and peer in through the dusty glass I see a tiny glimmer of what could be.  And it could be epic.