Engaging Community Through Film
1:19 pm
Wed May 22, 2013

'Wonder Women' Guests Appreciate Community Cinema Events

Guests at WKAR's April 25 Community Cinema screening of Wonder Women: The Story of America's Superheroines were not only able to see a segment of the film but hear from speakers Gary Hoppenstand and Jess Knott.

WKAR's Susi Elkins with panelists Jess Knott and Gary Hoppenstand
Credit w.r. richards/WKAR

Those attending included Whitney Spotts and Misty Elliott, both of Lansing.

"I'm a comic book dork," said Spotts. "I wrote my Master's dissertation on a Batman graphic novel, so that's why I'm here," she added, saying that she loved the discussion. 

Elliott said she was moved several times through the discussion just hearing those in the area who care and want to be something like this, part of deep discussions. "I feel like so often we're in a world where it's superficial, topical. It doesn't get to this level."

Both Spotts and Elliot attended the Downton Abbey screening at Studio C! and listen to and watch WKAR.

Whitney Spotts and Misty Elliott

"I'm a big listener of the classical station," Spotts said. "With television I love Downton Abbey. I'm obsessed. So that's really turned me back on to checking out the other stuff that's going on. I do like the documentaries a lot as well."

Elliott says she has a PBS.org app, "so it's really convenient for me to tune in that way and watch things that are on that level. I don't have cable so my TV is not on unless it's hooked up to some technology."

Sara Metz
Credit w.r. richards/WKAR

Sara Metz of Lansing gave the event "Two thumbs up! I would come to more things like this. I love seeing what people in the community are doing. I love seeing how that relates to what's going on in the bigger world and how our community plays a role in that and how we fit. I really enjoy things like that," she said.

Gina Calcagno of Grand Ledge said she was watching the documentary when it first premiered on TV. "I posted on Facebook, 'It's like Independent Lens put all of Gina's favorite things in one Independent Lens.' And immediately a few friends, and then Jess, who's on the panel tonight, hopped in and said, 'did you know about WKAR doing this thing?' So I reserved tickets immediately. Who's going to pass up a chance to see a pop culture expert talk about all of my favorite things?"

Ryan Knott, Sara Metz and Gina Calcagno
Credit w.r. richards/WKAR

Ryan Knott of Lansing said "I think it's one of those uniquely public television types of things and I love that sort of thing. I think it's a great way to bring the community in to voice our opinions and get involved in the discussions in ways that they just don't have opportunities to do. This is my first, but honestly, I will be back. This is fantastic," he added.

Knott, Metz and Calcagno also appreciated WKAR's community commitment in programming, citing BackStage Pass, Off the Record, QuizBusters and Current State as programs with which they had more than a passing familiarity.

Or, as Calcagno put it, "I've really kind of relied on that type of programming to figure out and get my bearings for what's going on in Lansing and really across the state."

WKAR's next Community Cinema will focus on the upcoming program Love Free or Die, May 23 at WKAR.

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