Per this item forwarded along by a reader in the UK, it seems like a fair number of cinemas in Great Britain are banning popcorn, which has to be, sincerely, among the stupidest things I’ve heard this year. Somehow even more stupid than the surging trend of its banning, though, are the explanatory comments by Daniel Broch, owner of the renowned Everyman cinema in London’s
upmarket Hampstead district.
Broch cites popcorn’s “disproportionate influence on the space in terms of its overwhelming
smell, the cultural idea of it and the operational problems created by
the mess it produces” as contributing factors in its banning. Here, let me play transatlantic problem-solver for a moment. First, it’s the odor of those urinal cakes in downmarket theaters that would trigger my gag reflex long before the odor of popcorn; perhaps an air filtration system or, failing that, a can of Oust will help save the apparently large segment of the British population allergic to the odor of popcorn. Secondly, I’m not even sure what “the cultural idea of it” refers to it, but I think that’s class-bashing. Finally, if your business is suffering major “operational problems” because of popcorn, feel free to mix in a teenager with a broom. Most towns have one or two who would gladly sweep for the chance to watch free movies. You don’t even have to pay them — just tell them they’re “floor interns.”
Broch wraps up by adding, “I’m not saying no popcorn is better than popcorn,” failing to somehow realize that yes, that’s exactly what he’s saying. Oh, Great Britain…