Opening to the haunting strains of "There was a Farmer Had a Dog" arranged for string sextet and panpipes by Minton Warsalis, Ken Burns turns his camera toward those Lucky-Strike-stained, Lee-Press-On-nailed hands that wield those irresistible celluloid buttons in archival footage, or the giant marker of the modern game - Bingo.
Bypassing academia, Burns interviews his subjects, a generation of retirees the likes of which may never be seen again. Having heard that these avatars of the lime green polyester pantsuited version of the American Dream were becoming as scarce as an Aqua-Netted blue bouffant, the Burns crew took to the streets & the National Archive.
Burns uncovered striking evidence that the CIA investigated several church halls when an aggregate of filled-in cards appeared to spell out nuclear secrets in Braille. Bishop Yiuiurii Bilkemoskyi-Fatale of The Cathedral of SS. Boris and Natasha denied everything, and, in attempt to make nice, invited the agents back for a free borsht on Casino Night.
Burns poignantly notes the advancing age of the bingo community. "The attrition of our elderly bingo-ers should sound a clarion call to record this moment of Americana before it slips away."
______NWWN-TV (wiry service)
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