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Netflix Iron Bowl: Trends in Auburn and Tuscaloosa Movie Rentals, Week 12

Check out Week 1 here, Week 2 here, Week 3 here, Week 4 here, Week 5 here, Week 6 hereWeek 7 here, Week 8 here, Week 10 here, and Week 11 here.

Fräulein Maria sings "How do you solve a problem like Auburn's offense?"

It’s hard to believe we’re one game away from the real Iron Bowl. Where did the season go? I honestly have no idea. We spend months looking forward to college football season and once it arrives time seems to speed by. Oh, well. Let’s take one of our last looks at what fans in Auburn and Tuscaloosa have been watching…

At the beginning of the season I joked that I wondered if fans would end up watching a movie like “Old Yeller” after a loss. After Auburn’s destruction at the hands of the Georgia Bulldogs last weekend, I half expected to see it make the list. Thankfully it didn’t. It seems that Auburn fans are in somewhat high spirits after the loss and this can no doubt be contributed to the fact that it is homecoming week on The Plains. “The Sound of Music” tops the list of local favorites for Auburn, Alabama this week. You can count me among the Auburn fans who hated the idea of having homecoming sandwiched between Auburn’s two biggest rivals, but I can honestly say a celebration is in order. This young Auburn team has exceeded outside expectations with its four losses all coming on the road to quality opponents. The fact that Auburn is headed for a decent to good bowl game is quite an accomplishment considering the players they’ve lost to injuries and the leadership they lost from last season’s BCS National Championship team.

Of course, the Auburn Family doesn’t have its head in the sand, far from it. “The Family Stone” clocks in as a local favorite for a second straight week. Its inclusion the top 5 local favorites serves as proof that the Auburn Family isn’t blind to the fact that their team has struggled and has work to do, but they acknowledge that part of being a family is picking up the pieces and moving on. “Life As We Know It” (#24) at Auburn has changed quite a bit in the past year. Our beloved Tigers broke an over 50 year national championship drought, but with the good news came the bad news that someone had poisoned the Toomers Oaks in an attempt to crush the Auburn Spirit. The inclusion of “The Family Stone” and “Life As We Know It” show that it’s alive and well. Sure, we’re not having a banner year, but for members of the Auburn Family it’s about much more than wins and losses. It’s about a love for a school in a small town that has given so much to so many of us and we can’t wait to support those young men who will soon go on to impact our world equipped with the knowledge and love Auburn University gave them.

I digress. You came here for amazing insight into viewing patterns, not a history lesson on what it means to be part of the Auburn Family. There’s plenty to be noted about football in the local favorites. The top of the list shows Auburn is ready to celebrate homecoming, but other local favorites show that Auburn residents are aware of a menace lurking next weekend. At number 6, the alien invasion movie “Skyline” suggests Auburn fans are perfectly aware that Nick Saban and his crimson horde will begin their march toward Jordan-Hare next weekend. Speaking of invasions by dark forces, Auburn fans have once again proven their affinity for Harry Potter by watching “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.” Of course this is the movie that setup the final showdown between good and evil in the series and it’s only fitting that Auburn residents are preparing for The Dark Lord Saban’s assualt on their beloved Hogwarts (Jordan-Hare) a week before the season reaches its epic conclusion.

Before folks worry that I’m looking ahead to next week and ignoring Samford, I’d like to mention that the number 8 local favorite is “Fast Five.” On the surface it would seem Auburn residents were seeking refuge in the world of underground street racing, but there’s another reason they’re watching. The movie involves a band of brothers coming together to take care of one last job. But while they try to keep it business as usual, they’re being closed in upon by a federal agent played by The Rock. In football terms, Auburn knows they’re not a good enough team to simply go through the motions and easily handle Samford, so they’re having to focus in on the task at hand, beating Samford, before moving on. The only problem is the federal agent (The Crimson Tide) is hot on their heels and isn’t concerned with their problems. He’s only looking to do his job: take them down.

Although Alabama is rolling right along and appears poised for a BCS bowl game, it appears that fans in Tuscaloosa are approaching Saturday’s final home game of the season with heavy hearts. Two of the top 3 local favorites in Tuscaloosa both deal with tragedy and loss. “The Way Home” involves a community coming together to deal with the tragedy of a missing child. Of course we all know that earlier this year Tuscaloosa was one of the areas most effected by a string of strong thunderstorms which produced multiple tornadoes. Property was destroyed and lives were lost. It’s only fitting that the Tide is having a strong year as there’s no doubt that football serves as a good distraction for the city that is still working to recover.

If “The Way Home”, the number one local favorite in Tuscaloosa, reflects the community immediately after the storms, “Catch and Release,” the number three local favorite is a good example of life in the months following the storms. The movie deals with accepting a tragedy and rebuilding a life after it. Tuscaloosans have done a good job of moving forward, while never forgetting those they lost on that spring day.

I fully expect the Crimson Tide’s final home game of the season to be cause for celebration. Sure, the city has been through a lot, but as I mentioned before, football has served as a welcome distraction from the harsh realities of life. If the number 14 local favorite, “No Strings Attached”, is any indication, fans in Tuscaloosa are expecting their team to finish off their home schedule in style…with a drubbing of Georgia Southern. Some might view it as a potential letdown game, but there’s really no doubt that Alabama has the superior team. I know it, you know it and fans in Tuscaloosa do, too, as they’ve been watching “The A-Team.” Of course, this final home game is only a stepping stone towards the Tide’s bigger goals of getting back “Something Borrowed” by the Auburn Tigers since last season, the Foy-ODK Sportsmanship Trophy, and if things go right, the BCS National Championship Trophy.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving and be back next week as the Netflix Iron Bowl take a look at the real Iron Bowl!

* Just some food for thought: “Sucker Punch” made the list of local favorites for Auburn. Is it a recognition of Auburn’s beatdown at the hands of the Georgia Bulldogs, or is it an omen that The Crimson Tide “will be unprepared” for Auburn pulling off an upset next week? Only time will tell.

Stephen Savage writes at “Movies ‘n Munchiesand is considered by his mother to be the best blogger on all things movie and food related. Holding two degrees from Auburn University, Stephen is proud to call himself an Auburn Man. He currently spends his time working on his blog. He is available for freelance work and retirement parties. Follow his blog on Twitter @moviesnmunchies.

Keep Reading:

* The real history of rolling Toomer’s Corner
* Gene Chizik in high school
Playboy in Jordan-Hare… 1994
The truth behind the 1988 Auburn vs. LSU “Earthquake” game
Five Auburn coeds featured in Playboy’s “Girls of the SEC” issue
John Travolta in an Auburn shirt
Auburn grad stars in new National Geographic reality show
Glee star Naya Rivera wears Auburn shirt in FHM photo shoot

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