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Perfect Pairings

By Amanda Rossenrode

I love rainy days. I’ve lived in Palm Springs most of my life, and the sun and I are not on good terms. The sun is hot and I burn like a Toaster Strudel on my way from the house to the car. We don’t get a lot of rain out here, but El Nino is promising a wet winter. What goes well with rainy days? Movies! And anyone who’s ever dropped forty bucks at the cinema’s concession stand knows food pairs well with movies. It can be done badly, though. If you eat leftover Kraft macaroni and cheese while watching Chef, you’re going to wonder what life mistakes have led you to this dark place. You should never eat anything while watching The X-Files. There’s always at least one scene with space worms feasting on a human skull. Here are some incredible pairings. 

Back to the Future Trilogy + Chinese Food

No one ever sits down to watch Back to the Future Part III. You either watch the first one or watch them all. This is quite the task you’ve taken on and you will need fuel for you and your time travel companion. This is not the time for some lame one-item combo from Panda Express. There is never a good time for Panda Express, and you shouldn’t sully the legacy of Back to the Future with its lame chicken nuggets. For Back to the Future, you need to go to your favorite hole in the wall and get the works: eggrolls and Chinese BBQ ribs. The reason for this is you will need something to gesture with around the middle of part two when there’s like three Marty’s and you suddenly realize that THEY ABANDONED JENNIFER IN THE ALTERNATE PRESENT! They dumped her on a stranger’s porch in the post-apocalyptic Biff era and never went back for her! She’s going to wake up alone and spend the rest of her life in a dystopian nightmare where maybe her parents are gone or there’s another Jennifer or, or--pass me the lo mein. 

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles + Pizza

Let me be clear. I am talking about the 1990 movie. I don’t care what you eat with the Michael Bay version. It's most likely paste and your own hair because you are obviously in kindergarten.  Pizza is legally mandated by the Federal Government when watching that film. Not even Domino's own commercials can make their pizza look so good onscreen. This is a movie that needs a revisit every couple years because I bet quite a few of the jokes went over your head the first time you saw it. For instance, I really thought that Turtle Wax was something you apply to turtles. Polishing your pet turtle is not a good idea, folks. If you watch this movie without pizza, you will inevitably get up and order some, so just do it beforehand so you don’t interrupt the movie when the Feds come to arrest you, citing your egregious lack of pizza. Also apples. Because that scene where Casey Jones is talking to April while eating an apple is filled with all kinds of chemistry. 

Pulp Fiction + A Tasty Burger and a Sprite

A burger is the cornerstone of any nutritious breakfast. Therefore, get up early and watch this movie with a tasty cheeseburger and wash it down with a delicious beverage.  

Tarantino seems to enjoy pairing food with some of his most violent scenes. Jules samples Brad’s Kahuna burger before the epiphany-inducing gun fight. Breakfast in the diner is cut short by a robbery. In Reservoir Dogs, Mr. Blonde stops for a Happy Meal with a cop in the trunk. In True Romance, the battle at the brothel starts with an egg roll and ends with Christian Slater getting a Kahuna Burger. Later on, Alabama and James Gandolfini duke it out in the hotel room while her lover is fetching more burgers. Maybe these people should buy a cookbook and start eating in. My theory is that poor Quentin was mugged on the way home from Fatburger. They took his money and his tasty burger and he did nothing. He secretly wishes that he had stood up to the Hamburglars and fantasizes in a way only he can about the pain he would have inflicted and the sweet taste of the burger he never had. 

Sharknado + Sushi

Sharknado is the classic tale of a tornado of sharks, some washed up 90’s actors, and a bomb. It is based on a poem by Homer. I think. That’s what I got from Wikipedia anyway. As humans, we’ve always had a rocky relationship with the sea. It’s cold and wet and filled with murderous shark tornados. Why are they so murderous? Perhaps because we don’t take the time to understand them. So connect with your inner shark and eat some raw fish, as you would in the sea. If you’re a gigantic baby, who’s afraid to try new things, get one of those shrimp rolls with too much avocado. Why did the government mandate that avocado has to be in everything nowadays? See kids, this is why you vote. 

Twilight + Italian food (and a nice glass of Chianti…)

Twilight is the greatest comedy of our generation. It’s so subtle in its humor, many don’t even realize it’s a comedy. Unlikeable, disagreeable teen Bella has the entire town vie for her friendship despite the fact she goes out of her way to thwart any advance at kindness. She catches the eye of an equally socially awkward vampire who has decided to attend high school for the last eighty years (despite the fact he can easily pass for eighteen and just forego reading The Old Man and the Sea for eternity). He and his family of inter-dating teen vamps are doomed to be attractive and pale for the rest of their lives, sparkling in the sun, and guilt-ridden over their desire for... animal flesh. Just like me, except for the whole “eternal hotness” bit. In a hopeless attempt at thoughtfulness, the vamps make Bella an elaborate Italian feast, suspecting for some reason she is Italian. Bella rudely refuses even a mouthful despite the fact six immortal ghouls are watching the Food Network and slaving over dinner. Not even a bite, Bella? It all looks delicious! Your sad veggie burger couldn't have been that satisfying. You’re meeting the parents for the first time. If you go to meet someone’s parents and they offer you fried garbage, you push it around your plate and make yummy noises. Blonde vampire smashes a bowl of Caesar salad between her hands because I would too, ungrateful human. Don’t be like Bella. Let your in-laws spend hours cooking an Osso Buco and then reward them by showing them the joys of watching these actors stuttering through their lines. 

Well, I hope I have made you sufficiently hungry and educated you at the same time. The purpose of my life’s journey is to shine the light of knowledge on topics I spend far too much time thinking about. If I prevented even one person from eating Del Taco while watching Downton Abbey, my work here is done.  

Everyone knows Del Taco is best paired with documentaries. 

Crystal HarrellComment