Utica in Pop Culture

Utica is among New York's top cities. It is also at the bottom of this ranking. Maybe that's why it carries dichotomy deep in its DNA.

So much so that when this affects its presentation in the media. You either see in depictions where it couldn't possibly be anywhere else in the world (generally in books and films by reasonably high-profile authors). Or you see its name attached to vague references based only on its exotic-sounding name.

Here's a few examples you can check.

Utica's Guest Starring Spots

  • Fans of the television series The Office may remember Utica as the location of a branch of the fictional company that owns the eponymous working place. The cast would very often refer to it throughout the show and even visited it in two late episodes.

  • One of New York's (and America's) most celebrated poets, Allen Ginsberg, included Utica in his most epic work, Howl. He managed to give the city a very Beat vibe by saying, "I'm with you in Rockland / where you drink the tea of the / breasts of the spinsters of Utica".

  • Tommyknockers
  • Stephen King once admitted he was fascinated by Utica -- and by a specific business in the city, which he never named. The most blatant example of this is Bobbi Anderson, the alien-possessed protagonist from Stephen King's novel The Tommyknockers -- a Utica native who actually spends some time there during the story. Don't bother with the TV adaptation made in the 90's, though -- it was filmed in New Zealand.

  • Utica's Memorial Auditorium, home to several Utica teams including the famous Mohawks, was where Paul Newman had the most fun ever playing a character: Foul-mouthed Reggie 'Red' Dunlop, a veteran hockey player coaching a loser team in the 1977 comedy Slap Shot. Expect the Auditorium to have undergone a few improvements since then, though.