Midnight openings are special, don’t let one nutter ruin them

As you can imagine the gun massacre at the midnight opening of the new Batman movie and ongoing bomb disposal story is high on the list of conversations in our house at the moment. It’s a horrific crime and also brings out the worst in anti-scifi/comic commentators which, of course, drives Scifi hubby up the wall. Millions of people read comic books, watch comic book based movies, read scifi, play video games, like rock music etc yet for some reason that whole genre seems to always get the blame when something like this occurs. I know this guy went mad at a Batman movie but if you’re crazy you’re crazy – the movie is just an excuse.

Scifi hubby isn’t a huge fan of the recent Batman movies (actually that’s quite an understatement and a story for another time) so we decided not to go to an early screening but I happened to be up very early yesterday and was listening to the radio as I got ready to go to work. The DJ got a call from someone on their way to see the 5am (UK time) screening of The Dark Knight Rises (so before anything had happened in the US). He started out teasing them and saying he didn’t know that cinemas opened at that hour until he was flooded with calls and texts from people saying they were also on their way to see it. To hear the news from the US just an hour or so later was really sad.

It does remind me of the times we’ve been to midnight movie openings (or early morning openings given the US/UK time zones). We’ve seen Star Wars Episode One (I know, I know, but it was a preview showing so no one knew it was going to be so awful), Batman Begins and various others. I know it’s very nerdy to be the first to see it, as friends have frequently pointed out, but there’s something quite special about these screenings. There’s something quite naughty about going to a movie at that time. Its a bit like staying up late as a kid or reading your book under the covers with a torch. The atmosphere is great. Fans dress up, people scream and clap and there’s often an ‘exclusive’ movie poster or comic to collect. It’s no great surprise that the first reaction of the movie goers in Aurora was to assume it was all part of the event. I just hope this random act of a madman doesn’t spoil midnight openings forever.

I think the thoughts of every comic book fan (or wife therefore) are with the injured, families and friends (picture pinched from Little League).


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