The cure for the common television show.

Mad linkage:

John Cusack as Edgar Allan Poe (and hopefully teaming up with young Abe Lincoln to hunt vampires).

Obama urges Americans to “turn the page” on Iraq.

Bill Compton as Doctor Doom and either Jack Bauer or John McClane as the Thing.

Jon Hamm: “If Rob Lowe had been cast in the part, it would have been different. There was no backstory with me.”

An interesting write up on Phonogram: The Singles Club.

Behind the “Frazenfreude.”

Stephen Hawking changes his views on God.

Just imagine this: An 80 hour Lost marathon.

5 mind blowing ways that your memory plays tricks on you.

5 UFO sightings that even non-crazy people find creepy.

5 stupidest ways that movies deal with foreign languages.

6 famous unsolved mysteries (that have totally been solved).

January Jones: “I need not to think about my character. Betty is so blissfully ignorant in certain ways, so I feel like I should be too.”

Speaking of Arcade Fire: Their new collab with Google folks, The Wilderness Downtown.

A cannibal restaurant in Berlin. Figures.

Laura Marling’s award-nominated love triangle.

Self-described CIA assassin dies in ([accidental] self-imposed) gun accident.

Some of these pictures are, of course, from Rolling Stone, which will be featuring Mad Men on the cover of their new issue. Great idea. Bad photoshopping on that cover though.

And, I tell ya, August and I have really missed doing our Mad Men write ups the past few episodes, especially since, as far as I’m concerned, this has been the show’s strongest season yet, but on the plus side, it’s probably spared you an incredible amount of Nora Zehetner photos that I would’ve just bombarded you with…

Seriously.

Creepy artificial arm from the 1800s.

Peter Travers talks with Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Weezer’s just trying to sell some clothes and Cee-Lo says “Fuck You.”

Is Barnes & Noble really going bye bye?

Blah blah blah bedbugs.

The Bloom Box: A power plant the size of a coffee mug.

Why do hurricanes often curve out to sea?

There’s some NSFW happening in the new Conan movie.

One year after Disney bought Marvel: Not much has really changed.

The perilous profession of underground mining.

Wormholes in NYC.

I honestly can’t believe that they renewed Human Target.

Booty calls are their own special type of relationship.

Oh, and hey, the next post will be the 750th!

Precious little simulacrum.

Found this somewhere in the wilds of the internet the other day:

Scott Pilgrim vs. The Matrix, mashed up. Made me chuckle. Also, Keanu, you’ve really made a comeback (of sorts) on the internet this year. And, only slightly unrelated, this:

A twist of fate.

Mad linkage:

Long running comic strip Cathy will be coming to an end October 3.

AMC picking up new crime thriller series, The Killing.

The cowboy’s lament, up above, from here.

Why are southern California’s seas turning green?

Homeless Poles living on barbecued rats and alcoholic handwash.

Brazil’s Air Force to officially start recording UFO sightings.

How to have sex at work.

Google, Verizon, and net neutrality.

One of the last strips that Harvey Pekar wrote.

Albino python on cocaine confronts police.

Readers pick the best album art of all time.

The only Facebook button I’ll ever need.

Sarah Palin and Kate Gosselin together again for the first time.

Girl quits job via dry erase board, emails entire office (which makes for a cute hoax).

A poster for Julia Robert’s new movie.

Soldiers try to trade tech support for Afghan intel.

The secret to what makes something funny “discovered.”

A letter from a freed man to his former slave owner.

Happy Friday the 13th, everyone.

Sometimes I can’t believe it; I’m moving past the feeling…

I was all set to fill in for Marco and write up a Mad Men recap, but then I noticed that OS X now blocks screenshots of protected content. I don’t know when they worked in that wrinkle, but well done sirs. I’m far too lazy to search for screencaps online, so I’ll just drop some general thoughts.

Don: Is it a problem that I now root for Don Draper the same way I do for Jason Stackhouse? I’m like, “Attaboy, Draper! For an encore, do your neighbor!” Probably. I don’t know if television has ever given us one character, let alone two, who deal with this kind of “pussy overflow” on such a regular basis. Old Don would be hopelessly drawn to to the self-assured marketing analyst, because just like Rachel Mencken, girls who say no turn him on. New Don… well, we’ll see how much he’s really changed. He’s single now, so women are viewing him as a potential partner instead of just a fling now, and he’s having trouble getting used to it.

Peggy: Her talk with Freddy was a little “on the nose,” as they say, but we get the picture. Peggy knows this dork isn’t marriage material, so she’ll fuck him for now, knowing this will hasten his exit. While we’ve certainly gotten hints of feminist angst from her before, I think this episode was the closest she’s come to outright voicing them. I liked the half-grimace she, Joan and the marketing chick all seemed to share when White Pants were brought up in the meeting.

Roger: I think SCDP will not end the season with Lucky Strike as a client.

Betty: Fuck Betty.

Glen: Him too. Creep. The world, August Bravo aside, was not asking for more Glen.

——-

But what’s really on my mind tonight/this morning is the new Arcade Fire album: The Suburbs.

As soon as I read about the title of this LP, I had a feeling I’d like it. I’ve always had a complex connection with suburbia, and it sounds like Win Butler does too. I’m only on my second listen-through, but I can tell that this is an album that’s going to keep growing on me.

It’s a sort of choppy, stream of consciousness series of vignettes on the love/hate relationships between the suburbs and the city. The sprawl is an inescapable malaise of crushed dreams, but go downtown and maybe those shallow hipsters aren’t your kind either. Two years into an economic catastrophe and a lot of those downtown bohemia promises can start to sound like so much happy bullshit. Something fascinating about the line, “Now that San Francisco’s gone, I guess I’ll just pack it in.” There’s a theme of weary resignation here. But in The Suburbs, resignation feels a lot like growing up, and who says that’s a good thing, even if it’s unavoidable.

Most of the kids in my generation — if they could afford to, if they didn’t get shackled with a burdensome spouse or child, or military service — they moved to the city as soon as they could get away. Me, I moved back to the suburbs. I guess I’ve always felt there was something important going on here. Something that, if I came to understand it, would understand everything about modern American life. I don’t think I do yet, but I’m getting closer.

I’m confident that one day I will, and then I’ll leave.