If you thought it was the end of an era when “Total Request Live” closed up shop about a year ago, it was only the beginning of the end. Now MTV is saying adios to their monster studio that overlooks Times Square in New York City. The big guns over at Viacom, MTV’s parent company, don’t want to spend $11.6 million on the $1000-square-foot prime real estate anymore. They’re also giving up their expensive lot on the ground level that currently houses the MTV store. But now where will I go to buy my “I Want My MTV” apparel?!Even though I wasn’t terribly sad when “TRL” got the boot, I must admit that because of the show every time I walked through Times Square I made sure to glimpse in the direction of those giant black windows to see if any celebrity was peeking his or her head out. I did so, in spite of my usual laughter over the people congregated outside the “TRL” studio on the sidewalk, crying at the site of a Backstreet Boy peering down from two stories above through heavy-duty glass. Still, that studio was the place to congregate/learn about/gawk at/scream your lungs out, over the next big thing. It was also MTV’s last excuse to play 30-second clips of music videos during the daytime hours.
The departure of MTV’s home base is making me weepy-eyed. The idea of five, ten, or 15 years from now, seeing members of my generation walk through Times Square with their children, saying, “There was once this big studio, where all the major celebrities would come, and kids would cut class to stand on the street with signs … yada yada yada” is eerie. I’m feeling like an old hag and I don’t like it one bit.