Better to Reign in Hell: Inside the Raiders Fan Empire
A season with the infamous fans of the football team everyone loves to hate.
"[B]eyond doubt the sleaziest and rudest and most sinister mob of thugs and whackos ever assembled in such numbers under a single "roof," so to speak, anywhere in the English-speaking world."Hunter S. Thompson on Raiders fans
The silver-and-black-clad Oakland Raiders fans are the most notorious in American professional sports, with a mythic reputation for cursing, drinking, brawling, and generally wreaking mayhem. The devotion of the team's multiracial, largely blue-collar supporters runs deep, creating a profound sense of community. As Jim Miller and Kelly Mayhew reveal in this hair-raising and entertaining new book, the self-described Raider Nation, smitten with its outlaw mystique, provides a gritty alternative to California's sunshine-and-granola image.
Over the course of the harrowing 2003 season, Miller and Mayhew explored the reality behind the myth and interviewed legions of rabid Raiders fansfrom suburban families to bikerswhile attending games in the "Black Hole" (the rowdiest section in Oakland's stadium), frequenting sports bars, and crashing tailgate parties. Featuring the extraordinary photography of Joseph A. Blum, Better to Reign in Hell is both a rollicking tale of obsessive fandom and a fascinating study of the intersection of class, race, gender, and community in professional sports.
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Al Davis American Angeles Bay Area beer Black Hole blue-collar Booster Club Broncos Chargers coach Coliseum cops crazy crowd culture Dave Newhouse Davis Davis’s downtown East 14th East Bay East Oakland fan base feel football friends Fuck gang gangster Gannon imagined community interview Jerry jersey Jim Otto Kelly Ken Stabler kids live looked Mike neighborhood Oakland Raiders Oakland Tribune Oriard parking lot party percent personal seat licenses pirate play players police Raid Raider Nation Raiders fans Raiders games Raiders gear Raiders organization Raiders shield Ricky’s riots San Diego San Francisco San Leandro seats Silver and Black sports bar stadium street stuff Super Bowl t-shirt tailgate talking team’s thing thought thugs Tim Brown told tough violence walked wearing women working-class yelled