New York Daily Photo Analytics

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Shrine to Kitsch

Although New York City is not thought of as a locale for themed restaurants, we still do have our share, particularly in neighborhoods that see heavy tourist traffic. Uptown we have places like the Hard Rock Cafe, Planet Hollywood or the Harley-Davidson Cafe. In the Village we have Jekyll and Hyde Pub and the Slaughtered Lamb. A horror themed bar/restaurant is something you would expect in Disneyworld or Las Vegas, not in Manhattan.
Being St. Patrick's Day, I felt some obligation to at least see if anything was blog worthy. There was the Empire State Building in green but I decided that some drunken revelry would be be a better capture. So armed with cameras, my photographer friend and I took a short stroll down West 4th Street, which has a number of bars, restaurants and adult shops like the Pink Pussy Cat Boutique. The Slaughtered Lamb, like most other bars, was in full swing, sporting the requisite green motif with people spilling into the street. The pub appears to be the haunt of primarily students and tourists. Inside one can see various horror/gothic displays like a glass case with a werewolf biting a woman's neck. The basement is a dungeon where pool and darts are played.
The Slaughtered Lamb was inspired by the British pub of the same name in the film American Werewolf in London. The owner, Donald R. Finley, graduated from Columbia University in 1986 with an MBA before forming Eerie Entertainment and opening his various establishments, which include Jack the Ripper, Jekyll and Hyde Pub and his uptown extravaganza in a 5 story building, the Jeklyll and Hyde Club.
What's absolutely amazing about places like this is the range of opinions about them. I spent the morning reading patron reviews that ranged from one to five stars. The most commonly used negatives were kitschy or tacky. Yet many loved the atmosphere, food, decor and service - others hated all the same things and saw it as a shrine to kitsch ...

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