At Clusterfest, Fans Can Visit Classic Sitcom Sets and Immortalize Them on Instagram - NBC Bay Area
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At Clusterfest, Fans Can Visit Classic Sitcom Sets and Immortalize Them on Instagram

Painstaking re-creations of rooms from "The Office" and "Seinfeld" drew long lines of fans who gushed nostalgia

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    Clusterfest Fans Visit Classic Sitcom Sets

    Clusterfest, the three-day comedy festival centered in the front yard of San Francisco City Hall, is filled with laughter, music and FOMO: the Fear Of Missing Out. There are dozens of comedians and musicians, spread out across multiple stages, with no possible way to see them all. But throughout the weekend, hundreds are fans are lining up for attractions that aren't shows at all: they're impossibly detailed re-creations of some of television's most beloved sitcom sets.

    (Published Friday, June 21, 2019)

    What to Know

    • Clusterfest, a comedy festival sponsored by Comedy Central, is in San Francisco June 21-23

    • The festival is centered at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium and the adjacent Civic Center Plaza

    • Between the performances on several stages, exhibits pay tribute to celebrated classic TV shows

    Clusterfest, the three-day comedy festival centered in the front yard of San Francisco City Hall, is filled with laughter, music and FOMO: the Fear Of Missing Out.

    There are dozens of comedians and musicians, spread out across multiple stages, with no possible way to see them all. But there's one attraction fans won't have to worry about missing, if they're willing to wait in line: the impossibly detailed re-creations of some of television's most beloved sitcom sets.

    "These pretzels are making me thirsty!" exclaimed a man giving his best impression of Seinfeld character George Costanza.

    He was surrounded by a small crowd recording video of him, standing in what is unmistakably the kitchen of Jerry's apartment from the 1990s television series. The entire apartment, faithfully re-created inside a tent, was crowded with people snapping pictures of each other, doing their best character impressions, and holding up props.

    "It's fantastic, it's on point," one woman said of the meticulously-built set. "I'm in it. I'm in it!"

    At the other end of Civic Center Plaza, a similarly detailed replica of the set from The Office even featured some genuine costumes and props from the show. A long line of visitors snaked its way out of the tent, past a sign proclaiming, "Welcome to Scranton!"

    "The Office is my literal happiness every single day," one woman proclaimed as she thumbed through the employee handbook of the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. "I've seen it seven times, every single episode."

    The exhibit includes a full re-creation of Michael Scott's office (better known as the World's Best Boss) and several other characters' desks, with props including a stapler encased in Jell-O and Nard-Dog water bottles.

    Another classic TV show made an appearance at Clusterfest: The celebrity prank call series Crank Yankers. An outdoor installation invited guests to pick up an old-fashioned telephone and listen to old episodes of the show featuring comedians who've since rocketed to superstardom.

    Prank calls are "something that people of a certain age and generation all grew up with," said Comedy Central spokesperson Daniel Wolfberg.

    Of Comedy Central's plans to re-launch the series, he said, "People communicate differently now than they did when the show was originally on, and so the show will be updated to account for that."

    Could that mean the new show will include prank texts or social media tomfoolery? Wolfberg said it's possible. But for now, he'll only give us a strong "maybe."

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