‘Portlandia’: Where the dream of the ‘90s lives on...

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So, a friend visited L.A. over the holidays and he’d just moved to Portland, Ore., two weeks ago from New York, where he’d been living for the last three years. He showed me pictures of his multi-bedroom house that he’s renting for a song. He told me of his illustrious job at a fancy advertising company. And he told me about some cool bar called the Woods that used to be a former funeral parlor.

This is probably the sixth or so good friend in recent years that I’ve lost to Portland. The truth is that the sweet little city that loves roses and rain has turned into a hipster mecca, an empire of crafty stores and crafty beers and bicycles everywhere and oh, cheap record stores and bars. There might be only one job for every seven hipsters, but that’s hardly a reason to worry. According to this music video/trailer for the upcoming show from ‘Saturday Night Live’ comedian Fred Armisen and former blogger/Sleater-Kinney rocker Carrie Brownstein, Portland is where young people go to retire!

Debuting Jan. 21 on IFC, ‘Portlandia’ is a six-part series that is supposed to be less a skewering of the fair city and more a teasing valentine to all varietals of hipster, including feminist bookstore owners, bike messengers, punk rockers and other arty types. But, if they do plan on poking fun at Portland, the city’s residents can at least be rest assured that L.A., everyone’s favorite silicone mecca to bash, will be thrown on the fire as well, if the music video is any indication.

In the opening sequence, Armisen is back in L.A. to tell Brownstein the news of this weirdo bacchanalia. And of course, she’s decked out in the stereotypical Angeleno get-up: velour track suit; way too much lip gloss; overstyled hairdo and of course, Ugg-style boots (which, shudder, her yoga pants are tucked into).


Cut back to Portland, where Armisen is backed up by a chorus of tattooed and flanneled alternative lifestylers informing us that their town is a place where the tattoo ink never runs dry, where all the hot girls wear glasses and where your abandoned clowning education can be picked right back up! Devil sticks, tribal arm bands, being in a band, yeah!

Pop & Hiss will be serving vegan fare, raspberry-flavored craft beer and smoking clove cigarettes for the debut. Join us in your best crushed velvet dress?

-- Margaret Wappler