I recently discovered the talent of Joe R. Lansdale and have read the entire Hap and Leonard series, loving it. His standalone books are mostly excellent, with The Barrows firmly at the top. I am working my way back to Lansdale's early stuff. The Drive-In was ostensibly published in 1988 as a Bantam Book, but I would guess that he wrote it when he was much younger, like maybe in high school, then decided to clean it up a little and sell it as what it is.
This book truly sucks. When the Popcorn King started his mindless chant, I almost heaved it into the swimming pool. My dilemma is that there are apparently some sequelae to this piece, and I have to decide whether to add those to my reading list. Sorry Joe, I don't think I can handle any more junk like this.
There are some moments. The discussion about the hypocrisy of organized religion takes on a new, hilarious, but somewhat sophomoric, look, which unfortunately cannot salvage the story. It does show, however, a preview of the genius that the author developed after he grew up.