In this week’s New Yorker

January 6, 2013

pookie poo cartoon
A few long pieces held my interest:

* Lauren Collins on the new vogue for Scandinavian TV shows (with my favorite passage in the entire issue);

* Adam Green’s profile of Apollo Robbins, whose professional is pickpocket-as-entertainer; and

* Daniel Mendelsohn’s “Personal History” account of the correspondence between a tortured young homosexual (himself, growing up in Long Island) and Mary Renault, renowned lesbian author of a string of novels set in ancient Greece loaded with homosexual romances.

mendelsohn

Andy also pointed out the poignant contrast between Chris Ware’s “Back to School” cover from last September…

new yorker back to school

and this week’s, titled “Threshold,” in which the parents are not nearly so casual as they drop the kids off to school:

new yorker threshold

In other media notes, I was struck by a couple of juxtapositions in the Sunday New York Times recently that left misleading impressions. Last weekend, the annual “The Lives They Led” issue opened with this spread, which at first I took for a remarkably tony two-page ad for Portlandia:

portlandia spread

Then in today’s Arts and Leisure section, at first glance it looks like Reed Birney is making his Broadway comeback in drag impersonating a highly recognizable Hollywood actress:

1-6 actor comeback

 

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