Lucky Ju Ju's Awesome Collection

Call me a purist, but those newfangled video pinball machines lack character. As J.Lo said of Gwyneth Paltrow, "I'm not a fan." Just check out 'Pinball Art' – an exhibit of backglasses, playfields, and advertising flyers from pinball machines of the '60s and '70s housed at Lucky Ju Ju, the Alameda parlor dedicated to the historic arcade game – and you'll see what I mean. Back in the day, artists like Christian Marche, Roy Parker, and Dave Christensen were hired to make the intricately illustrated backglasses and playfields (the parts of the machine displaying the name of the game and score, and the parts you play on, respectively). Their colorful drawings of spaceships, robots, and scantily clad women were often what first attracted players to tug on a game's plunger and flap its flippers. Take a detailed look at a classic machine and you're privy to the particular artist's style, personality, and sense of humor. And the best part about this exhibit is, after you're done checking out the art, you can try out Lucky Ju Ju's Awesome Collection of vintage machines! Through April 28. Opens tonight, 6 p.m.-midnight. Parlor hours Fri.-Sat., 6 p.m.-midnight, Lucky Ju Ju, 713 E. Santa Clara, Alameda. Free. (510) 205-9793, www.ujuju.com.

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