Born from the 1986 underground classic short “Heavy Metal Parking Lot,” Trio’s crews head to entertainment venues — three per episode — to explore the motivations of fans and cravings for a particular act, proving knuckleheaded fanaticism isn’t limited to heavy metal. Series doesn’t get the same guttural, monosyllabic responses that alcohol-lubed Judas Priest fans delivered back in 1986 in “Heavy Metal,” making the series a pinch less fun than the original, though no less insightful.
Eventually, after listening to the fans of Cher, new-ager Yanni, metal vets Motorhead and pro wrestling, a universality to their responses crops up — plain and simple, these acts offer escape. Only the rapper 50 Cent elicits any sort of fanaticism based on the reality his work exposes. But when white girls in bikinis are trying to win tickets, it’s proof there’s an escapism for some of his audience, even if it’s not articulated by his hardcore fans.
While most events are chronicled immediately pre- and post-event, episode two explores the devotion of wrestling fans, who start camping out six hours before the first bout to meet the muscle men and score autographs; pleasantly, their fanaticism is consistently rewarded.
Six-episode series airs nightly between Sunday and Jan. 29. While there will certainly be redundancies, editors and producers have mostly prevented a collection of random screaming and a regurgitation of “(act’s name) is god,” the basic audio track on “Heavy Metal Parking Lot.” Other acts’ fans being featured include Phish (episode three), Kentucky Derby (episode four), cats (episode five) and the Daytime Emmys (episode six).
Considering the hit-and-run nature of the interviews, camera and audio work are remarkably solid.