Last night I attended the Adult Swim Drive In event at the South Drive-in Theater in Columbus, Ohio. We were treated to a free event with food, fun, and a screening of exclusive Adult Swim content.
We waited in a long line of cars and were slowly directed through the drive-in and told where to park. Cheerful volunteers clad in pink shirts and baseball hats checked our RSVPs and doled out wrist bands and free food vouchers. You could either drive and park and watch the clips traditionally from your car, or bring your own chairs and blankets and watch from the lawn instead. If Adult Swim Drive In is coming to your city, I would suggest the former, as we were allowed in first, and got access to the food trucks and other activities provided by Adult Swim well before the rest of the crowds.
There were some small organizational hiccups in terms of directing crowds and cars, but considering that each location where this event takes place is a different drive-in with a different setup, I was quite impressed with how they handled everyone.
I was less impressed by the lines that formed once the cars were settled and they started allowing folks in on foot. There were only four food trucks and one of them was an ice cream truck — for people who got there later, they waited in line for hours to get fed. The lines were still very long when the show started, and it didn’t help folks’ patience that they had to first wait in a line of cars before waiting in a line for food.
Still, the event allowed bringing your own snacks, as long as they remained in non-glass containers and didn’t contain alcohol. They also didn’t allow drugs or cigarettes, but that didn’t prevent an array of different kinds of smoke from wafting throughout the grounds during the event. I guess when you offer a group of young people a free event, some rules are bound to be broken.
The Adult Swim Drive In was 18+ and I would guess the average age of attendees at early- to mid-20s. We were a very diverse bunch of nerds, mingling, complimenting each other’s awesome cartoony apparel, appreciating the work Adult Swim put into this event. While I am fairly confident they are using the Drive Ins to gather information from their target demographic like email addresses and phone numbers, it’s hard to be disgruntled when the event itself was free.
At check-in they doled out posters and wristbands. Once inside, besides getting food, you could pose alongside Rick in space jail, play cornhole, or get treated to free candy and popcorn. As the sunlight dwindled we played a few rounds of trivia, texting answers as they appeared on the big screen. Winners got prizes, but no one in my group won anything, so I’m not sure what they were.
Finally it was time for the screenings themselves. I was hoping for something like a sneak peek into the upcoming Samurai Jack miniseries or maybe even some exclusive Rick and Morty content, but they were mostly testing newer stuff.
- Brad Neely’s Harg Nollin’ Sclopio Peepio: A new show that’s not quite done with season 1, this was in my opinion the funniest part of the evening. It’s an animated sketch comedy show and features a lot of celebrity talent, like Father John Misty and Gabourey Sibide. I really like that the sketches are all wildly different lengths, from a more traditional 3-5 minute format to literally seconds long jokes.
- Dream Corp LLC: This series will premier in the Fall. It was a bit of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, a bit of Waking Life, and a lot of silliness, featuring back alley dream doctors. Of all the upcoming new content, I think this one has the best shot of making it to a season two. Most of it is live action but the dreamscapes are rotoscoped.
- MOPZ: A short that premiered in April, M.O.P.Z. is… bizarre. It’s about a school janitor who builds a robot to help him with his cleaning duties, but the robot goes rogue and has to be stopped. It’s also a strange, dialogue-less, B-movie imitation, and the whole entire film is sped up, which made me queasy. Not really up my alley, but clearly a lot of love and work went into making it, and I’m sure it will appeal to some. You can watch it here.
- Fishcenter LIVE: Described as a “live, daily, marine-themed call-in show,” it’s half-satire, half-serious, all-silly little show. The premise is that a group of literal fish compete for points through things like in-tank competitions and listener’s discretion. This one was really funny, but I’m not sure how they can sustain this content everyday for an hour a day, and live to boot.
- Million Dollar Extreme Presents: World Peace: MDE is a sketch comedy group full of white boys, and that should have been my first clue that this show isn’t for me. It premiered in early August of this year, and I guess this show “satirizes the contemporary political climate,” but everything but their impression of early 2000s emo/screamo music left me cold.
- The Eric André Show: As the most established program on the Adult Swim Drive In roster (season 4 premiered earlier this month), this show got the biggest audience response. I’m not really a fan of humor that is so very reliant on making others uncomfortable, but Hannibal Burress is hilarious and I found myself laughing at this one quite a bit.
Author: K-K Bracken
K-K Bracken grew up overseas and in the Washington, DC area, went to the Ohio State University to get her BA in English, and has been in Columbus, Ohio ever since. She is currently querying her first novel ORCHESTRATION under the name Bracken Beveridge. She is the founder and organizer for the first Steven Universe exclusive fan convention, Beach City Con.
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