From Hemingway to Pynchon: The Favorite Recipes of Your Favorite Authors

Not full from Thanksgiving? Tis the season for indulging and sharing feasts with friends and family ones, so why not take some tips from your beloved literary giants and cook up some of their favorite treats? Whether its Carson McCullers cocktails or Ernest Hemingway’s savory trout, the wonderful site Paper and Salt has curated an enormous list of recipes that try and “recreate and reinterpret the dishes that iconic authors discuss in their letters, diaries, essays, and fiction.”

So take a look below, peruse more HERE, get out a pen, and get ready to jot down your your cravings.

Carson McCuller’s Cocktail

1/3 cup dry sherry
2/3 cup citrus tea
Lemon wedges

Brew tea to desired strength and add sherry. Stir and serve with lemon wedge, or pour into a thermos for a drink on the go.

Thomas Pynchon’s Beer-Braised Chicken Tacos 

3 tablespoons canola or olive oil, divided
1 pound boned, skinned chicken thighs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chile powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup Mexican beer
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 chipotle chile
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise

Soft taco shells
Pickled shallots
Cilantro
Cotija cheese
Lime wedges

1. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Add to pan and cook until chicken is lightly golden but not cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan and add to the bowl of a slow cooker.

2. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet over medium heat. Add onion and saute until slightly translucent, about 2 minutes. Add cumin, chile powder and garlic, and let cook another 2 minutes.

3. Add chicken broth to the skillet, scraping the browned onion off the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat and pour mixture into slow cooker. Add beer, tomato paste, chipotle chile, cinnamon stick and star anise.

4. Cook on high for 3 hours. Uncover, break chicken apart with a fork, then cover and cook 1 hour more.

5. Remove chicken from braising liquid. Add to taco shells and garnish with shallots, cilantro and cheese. Squeeze lime wedge over and enjoy with several beers.

Marcel Prousts’s Croissants With Coffee Glaze

1 package (14 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed in the fridge 2 to 3 hours
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons espresso or strong coffee
3/4 cup powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Unwrap thawed puff pastry onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out pastry to 1/8-inch thickness.

2. Orient the pastry sheet horizontally, then make 3 vertical cuts, resulting in 4 strips of dough. Cut each strip in half horizontally, making 8 rectangles. Cut each rectangle in half diagonally, making 16 triangles. Roll the wide end of each triangle toward the point. Curl the ends of the cylinder toward each other slightly.

3. Place croissants on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with egg. Bake 15 to 20 minutes until golden.

4. Meanwhile, make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk espresso and powdered sugar together until smooth. Brush over warm croissants and serve immediately, preferably in pajamas.

Marquis de Sade’s Molten Chocolate Espresso Cake with Pomegranate 

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
5 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
4 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (2.6-ounce) bar dark (71% cocoa) chocolate (such as Valrhona Le Noir Amer), finely chopped
Pomegranate seeds, for garnish (optional)

1.  Grease 10 (4-ounce) ramekins. In a small bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, espresso powder, baking powder, and salt.

2. Place butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed 1 minute. Add granulated and brown sugars, beating until well blended, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla, beating until well blended.

3. Fold flour mixture into sugar mixture; fold in chocolate. Divide batter evenly among ramekins; arrange ramekins on a jelly-roll pan. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours or up to 2 days.

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove ramekins from fridge and let stand at room temperature 10 minutes. Uncover and bake for 12 minutes or until cakes are puffy and slightly crusty on top (do not overbake – trust me, they’re done). Let sit for 1 minute, then unmold. Top with pomegranate seeds if using; serve immediately. If you can’t wait to unmold them, just eat them out of the ramekin. It’s not a sin.

Jane Austen’s Brown Butter Bread Pudding Tarts

1 sheet (about 1/2 lb.) thawed frozen puff pastry
4 tablespoons butter
1 rennet tablet (**See note)
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup cake crumbs (angel food or pound cake work well)
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 375°F and grease 6 ramekins (6-ounce size). Roll out 1 sheet thawed frozen puff pastry on a lightly floured surface into a 12” x 15” rectangle. Make 6 circles, about 5” in diameter, on pastry. Cut out circles, press into ramekins, and prick all over with a fork. Refrigerate.

2. In a small pan, stirring constantly, melt butter over medium heat until it is golden brown. Set aside to cool.

3. Dissolve rennet tablet in 2 tablespoons warm water in a small saucepan. Over low heat, add milk and sugar and stir 5 seconds, just long enough to get the sugar off the bottom of the pan. Using a kitchen thermometer, cook without stirring until mixture reaches 98°F. Remove from heat and cool 5 minutes.

4. Remove ramekins from fridge. Stir egg, cake crumbs, nutmeg and cinnamon into milk mixture. Stir in brown butter. Spoon filling into ramekins and bake until pastry is golden, about 25 minutes.

** Rennet is used for cheesemaking and gives this pudding its custardy consistency. You can find it in specialty groceries or most Whole Foods Markets. Check with the cheese counter if you can’t spot it.

Sylvia Plath’s Lemon Pudding Cakes 

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar, plus more for ramekins
1/4 cup flour
Zest of 1 lemon
1 cup reduced-fat buttermilk
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 egg yolks
4 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar and fresh berries, for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 6 6-ounce ramekins, lightly dust with granulated sugar, and set them in a small roasting pan.

2. In a medium bowl, combine remaining 2/3 cup granulated sugar, the flour and lemon zest. In a larger bowl, whisk together buttermilk, lemon juice, and egg yolks. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and whisk until combined.

3. In a small bowl or the bowl of a standing mixer, beat egg whites with salt until soft peaks form. Gently fold into lemon mixture. Divide batter evenly among ramekins and fill roasting pan with hot water until it reaches halfway up ramekins. Tent with foil.

4. Bake 20 minutes. Remove foil, then bake another 20 minutes or until cakes are golden and firm to the touch. Transfer ramekins to a rack and let cool 15 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edges and invert onto plates. Garnish with powdered sugar and berries. 

Nora Ephron’s Frozen Key Lime Pie 

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 15 crackers)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
6 large egg yolks (Note: Save egg whites for tart version.)
1 cup freshly squeezed Key lime juice
2 cans (14-ounce each) sweetened condensed milk (Note: Use 1 1/2 cans for tart version.)
1 tablespoon finely grated Key lime zest
1 cup heavy cream (Note: Not needed for tart version.)
1 tablespoon sugar

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. Combine graham cracker crumbs and butter in a medium bowl, and mix until moist. Evenly press mixture into a 9-inch pie plate, and bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Remove from oven, and transfer to a wire rack until completely cooled.

3. In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk yolks and lime juice together until combined. Set bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is foamy and registers 160°F on an instant-read thermometer, about 6 minutes. Remove bowl from heat, and whisk in condensed milk and zest until well combined. Pour into cooled pie shell and smooth top with a rubber spatula. Freeze until firm, at least 3 hours.

4. Remove pie from freezer 10 minutes before serving. Combine cream and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Spread evenly over pie or dollop on each slice along with a slice of lime, and serve immediately. (Note: For tart version, make meringue: Beat egg whites and sugar 3 to 5 minutes, until stiff peaks form. Spread over pie and brown lightly with a brulée torch, or by broiling 30 seconds.) Serves 8 or 1 cheating husband.

Cocktails with E.B. White 

Equal parts lime juice, apricot brandy, honey, and dry vermouth. Stir this all together (you only need a tiny amount of the whole business), then add 4 times the amount of gin. Plenty of ice, stir, and serve.”

White also made a handy note on portions: “For 2 people, you need only 1/2 ounce of each of the four funny ingredients. Then you need 8 ounces of gin, or what a baby would drink from a bottle.” For those of us who aren’t alcoholic infants, that’s 1 tablespoon of each of the first 4 ingredients to 1 cup gin.

**Note: Apricot brandy, being a liqueur, is already quite sweet, so I prefer to cut the honey to 1/2 tablespoon and add an additional squeeze of lime.

John Cheever’s Turkey Monte Cristo Sandwich 

4 slices rustic white bread (3/4 inch thick)
4 ounces smoked turkey breast
4 ounces gruyère cheese
1/2 apple, thinly sliced
1 egg
1/4 cup milk (2% or whole is good here)
2 tablespoons butter, divided
Powdered sugar

1. Assemble the sandwiches: On 2 slices of bread, layer turkey, cheese, and apple to cover bread completely. Top with remaining bread. Secure each sandwich with toothpicks. Trim crusts, if you’d like.

2. In a shallow baking dish, lightly beat egg with a whisk. Add milk, and whisk to combine.

3. In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon butter; swirl butter around pan until foaming. Coat both sides of the first sandwich in the egg mixture, then lay it in the pan, pressing down gently with a spatula to compact. After 3 minutes, flip sandwich and fry opposite side until golden brown. Remove from pan, and dry on a paper towel.

4. Repeat step 3 with remaining 1 tablespoon butter and second sandwich. Serve both sandwiches with sprinkles of powdered sugar on top.

**NOTES

For ease of frying, I suggest you start with 2 layers of bread for your first attempt and work your way up to 3 (or 4!). And – to appease my mother and get something fresh in here – I substituted apple for the more traditional jam.

Ernest Hemingway’s Bacon-Wrapped Trout with Corn Cakes

2 (10-ounce) whole trout, cleaned and gutted
1/2 cup cornmeal
Salt and ground pepper, to taste
8 sprigs fresh thyme
1 lemon, sliced
6 slices bacon
Fresh parsley, for garnish

1. Preheat broiler and set oven rack 4 to 6 inches from heat. With a paper towel, pat trout dry inside and out. Dredge outside of each fish in cornmeal, then season cavity with salt and pepper. Place 4 sprigs of thyme and 2 lemon slices inside each fish.

2. Wrap 3 bacon slices around the middle of each fish, so that the edges overlap slightly. Line a roasting pan with aluminum foil, and place fish on pan. Broil until bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. With a spatula, carefully flip fish over and cook another 5 minutes, until flesh is firm.

Jean-Paul Sartre’s Halva with Almonds

2 cups honey
1 1/2 cups tahini, well stirred
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 egg whites
3/4 cup toasted, coarsely chopped almonds (plus extra for sprinkling)

1. Line a loaf pan (9×5 or 8×4) with cooking parchment, allowing extra to hang over the sides.

2. Put honey in a small saucepan. On a low setting, heat honey, stirring occasionally, until a candy thermometer reads 240°F. Remove from heat.

3. While honey is heating, mix tahini, vanilla, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Put egg whites in a medium bowl; with a handheld electric mixer, beat until soft peaks form. (If you have a standing mixer, you can beat the egg whites in the mixing bowl with the whisk attachment.)

4. Add tahini mixture to egg whites and fold gently to combine. In a small stream, gradually add honey and stir 6 to 8 minutes, until the mixture stiffens slightly. Stir in chopped almonds.

5. Scrape mixture into prepared pan. Cover pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight until firm, 24 to 36 hours. Remove halva from pan and cut into pieces (if it’s still too soft, you can pop it in the freezer for an hour or so to set). Sprinkle bars with chopped almonds and snack away.

Six New Books To Get Excited About This Fall

You may not be headed back to school this September, but that’s all the more reason to take some pleasure in autumn’s crop of promising new literary work—you won’t have to pull an all-nighter writing an essay about any of it. Still, there’s far too much on the syllabus of life: how could we hope to wade through all those middling volumes bearing the names Auster and Lethem, the drab legal thrillers and schlock-horror, the overpraised debuts of a thousand MFA-accredited milquetoasts? Well, I did that for you and came back with just the good stuff. Here are the six forthcoming books for which you’ll want to keep an eye out.

The Goldfinch, Donna Tartt
If you haven’t read Tartt’s first novel, The Secret History, a classical Greek murder tragedy set among classics majors at a small liberal arts college, you really should get to it before they make it into a long-threatened terrible movie. Once you’re done with that, The Goldfinch, a massive tome and Tartt’s third in twenty years, will be in bookstores: it’s a safe bet that once you start turning the pages, you won’t stop until the entire mystery is unraveled. Theo Decker’s mother dies in an explosion at the Metropolitan Museum, connecting him forever to a particular painting, and the suspense spools out from there.
 
The Traveling Sprinkler, Nicholson Baker
Baker is noted for his brilliant and experimental nonfiction (Human Smoke) and pornographic romps through the sexual imagination (House of Holes), but he may be best when dwelling on his real subject: nothing. This novel reintroduces the character Paul Chowder, the writer’s-blocked narrator of The Anthologist, who once again struggles once again to make the meanings in his head take the shape of words. As always, his failure will be what’s compelling.
 
The Brunist Day of Wrath, Robert Coover
Another sequel, this one from a fabulist hero still operating at the height of his powers (check out “The Colonel’s Daughter,” his latest New Yorker story, for a taste). This thousand-page novel builds on Coover’s first, The Origin of the Brunists, which describes the formation of an apocalyptic cult around Giovanni Bruno. Apparently the new work gets inside the heads of at least 150 characters, exploring all manners of fundamentalism. Sounds delightfully dizzying.    
 
Bleeding Edge, Thomas Pynchon
As if you needed reminding, Pynchon’s 2001: A New York Odyssey is due out in two short weeks (we’re waiting for Amazon to tell us that it’s shipped). Here are a bunch of great reasons to let your anticipation reach a fever pitch.
 
Half the Kingdom, Lore Segal
One of the quiet masters of her time, with a fascinating oeuvre equal to her jaw-dropping biography, Segal returns with her first new novel in six years, a dark comedy exploring an unusual rash of "copycat" Alzheimer’s disease in a New York hospital. Few writers can promise to be so sharply funny on the realities of death and decay, and still Segal never flinches, warm and dispassionate at once.   
 
A Prayer Journal, Flannery O’Connor
In the mid-1940s, at the famous Iowa Writers’ Workshop, O’Connor apparently kept a journal devoted solely to matters of her Catholic faith (which, as her fans know, was always integral to her fiction). If you aren’t bowled over by the idea of reading what amounts to O’Connor’s correspondence with god almighty, I don’t know what will light a fire under you.
 

Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ To Boast Ridiculous Ensemble

The more we hear about Paul Thomas Anderson (is it too much to call him ‘The Master’ at this point?) adapting Thomas Pynchon’s soft-boiled noir Inherent Vice to the screen, the less we want to wait until 2014 for it. The latest news is that the auteur will retain the heavy constellation of 1970 SoCal characters, and has signed on a crew of serious ringers to play them. Some guesses about the casting below.

We know that Joaquin Phoenix will play the lead, pot-addled private eye Doc Sportello. It’s the role of a lifetime, should the humor and pathos find some balance. Sean Penn seems to be hovering near the project and, judging from his criminal turn in the laughable Gangster Squad, might be a good fit for Mickey Wolfmann, the real estate mogul at the center of the mystery—though that’s not necessarily a lot of screen time. Going to guess that Reese Witherspoon, already on board, is playing Doc’s blonde hippie ex-girlfriend, Shasta Fay Hepworth.

For my money, though, the the part you want is that of Lieutenant Bigfoot Bjornsen, a massive and meddling cop who spends a lot of time threatening, manipulating, and insulting Doc Sportello. On size alone, this could go to Bencio del Toro, though that would be a hell of a bleach job. Character actor Kevin J. O’Connor would be fairly perfect as mysterious dentist Rudy Blatnoyd, and so would Martin Short, while Jena Malone, whom we’ve not seen enough of since Donnie Darko and Saved!, has most likely landed the most absurd Pynchon name of all time: Japonica Fenway.

Really, though, the possibilities are endless, and one pivotal character—Denis, Doc’s even-more-burnt-out best friend and partner of sorts—is bound to be an audience favorite. Will it go to Owen Wilson? Probably. Either way, the ensemble is shaping up to be one for the record books. We can look forward to Inherent Vice filling out the 2015 Oscar nominations for supportive acting, at least. 

[More by Miles Klee; Follow Miles on Twitter]

Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’ Shooting This Month With Robert Elswit as DP & WB Backing

Back in January, we shed light on Paul Thomas Anderson’s next feature, the long-discussed adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s Inherent Vice. As the first authorized cinematic revisiting of the author’s work, the project was announced back in 2010 and has since made its way around the rumor mill, with various speculations as to who would comprise of the cast, just when it would begin production, and who would backing the film.

And today, Cigarettes & Red Vines announced that shooting is set to go underway this month, thanks to finding its backing from Warner Bros. It was assumed that Annapurna Pictures, who financed and saved The Master would be taking on the project. But in an "amicable" decision, WB has taken the reigns and will mark PTA’s first time working with the studio. With Robert Downey Jr. initially as the leading candidate to take on the role of  Sportello—a stoner detective in Pynchon’s counter-culture noir—Joaquin Phoenix is now slated for the role, after he and Anderson’s impressive work together on The Master.  As for the rest of the cast, nothing has been announced but it’s safe to assume we’ll be getting a deluge of updates on that later this month as production kicks off.

In addition, although Mihai Malaimare Jr. gave us the incrediblly vast and stunning world of Freddie Quell and Lancaster Dodd, Robert Elswit will in fact be reprising his role of cinematographer on this one. After working on all of PTA’s films, save The Master, the Oscar-winning DP will be reunited with his old pal, shooting Inherent Vice on 35mm—no digital. Centering on the story of said Sportello uncovering a plot to kidnap a billionaire land developer in 1960s Los Angeles, the film will apparently be PTA’s "first foray into comedy." However, as we noted a few months back: 

Lest we forget, Punch-Drunk Love—an early-Altman-esque film about an emotionally inept man who collects pudding to amass frequent flyer miles and has a crying problem, who falls in love with an equally bizarre woman, in a world where aesthetics and mood go hand in hand while pieces of Jeremy Blake’s abstract art are spliced like tonal cue cards between moments—was Anderson’s attempt at a mainstream romantic comedy. 
So yes, if this is comedy, full speed ahead. We’ll be keeping a close eye on this one. And in the meantime, let’s watch some videos of young PTA talking about movies because, what better way could you spend your morning?
 

New Details Emerge on Pynchon’s ‘Bleeding Edge’

We already knew that Thomas Pynchon’s follow-up to soft-boiled stoner noir Inherent Vice would be set in New York in 2001, between the dot-com bust and 9/11—incidentally making it the most up-to-date setting for the author, who has written about much of the twentieth century (and nineteenth, and eighteenth) but nothing about the twenty-first. But a new Amazon description offers more info.

The hero of this 500-page work is the Pynchonianly named Maxine Tarnow, “running a nice little fraud investigation business on the Upper West Side, chasing down different kinds of small-scale con artists.” This despite her license to do so being revoked. She hacks the wrong file, people show up dead, the mystery is afoot.

Sounds like more of what we love from this literary recluse. But the two items that sound most promising to these ears? The promise of “a professional nose obsessed with Hitler’s aftershave,” and the possibility that Jerry Seinfeld will “make an unscheduled guest appearance.” Can’t wait to read this one on the subway.

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A Bunch Of Unverified Stuff Concerning Thomas Pynchon

The infamously secretive (but surely not as weird as Salinger) postmodernist author and absolute genius Thomas Pynchon turns 76 this year: that much we know. But will he publishing a novel this fall called Bleeding Edge, as Ron Charles of The Washington Post tweeted on Friday? Penguin Press, who should know, isn’t saying anything. But maybe that’s to heighten suspense.

Secondly, how closely is Pynchon collaborating with Paul Thomas Anderson on a film adaptation of his previous effort, the screwball noir Inherent Vice? He certainly allowed to book to be optioned, though it’s hard to imagine him getting involved in the script, let alone production. He did, however, do a few notable appearances on The Simpsons, so a cameo is something to hope for.  

Finally, can we even confirm that Thomas Pynchon exists? Literary conspiracy theorists—and Pynchon, whoever he is, would delight in such—have claimed a massive practical joke: Since his first novel, V., a select few readers have argued that “Thomas Pynchon” is the alter-ego of fellow postmodern writer William Gaddis, who died in 1998. Meaning Against The Day was written by a zombie, I think?

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A Supposedly Brief Chronology of “The Simpsons” Literary References

In its multi-decade, 500+-episode run, The Simpsons has sported all sorts of popular culture references, from the Immortal Bard (a Hamlet parody still shown in high schools all across America by English teachers who want to get hip with the young people) to Spider-Pig (does whatever a spider-pig does).

Last night, The Simpsons aired a surprising homage to David Foster Wallace, titled “A Totally Fun Thing That Bart Will Never Do Again,” which borrows its title — and plot — from DFW’s A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again. The episode, in which Bart assumes the role of Wallace on his disdain-inducing luxury cruise, also includes musical snippets from Hot Chip (“Boy From School”) and Animal Collective (“Winter’s Love”).

With a television run as long as the one Matt Groening’s iconic series has had, there have been a whole lot of other surprising, notable and overall funny salutes to important literary tomes, from Hemingway to Stephen King to the Bible. Here’s a look back at just a few of the other key Simpsons moments that went by the book.

Edgar Allen Poe has been a rather popular source of inspiration, particularly with the Treehouse of Horror Halloween episodes. One of the first Halloween shorts was a direct take on "The Fall of the House of Usher;" in “Lisa’s Rival,” she replaces perfect Allison Taylor’s diorama of "The Tell-Tale Heart" with an actual beef heart, with the real diorama torturing her from the floorboards. But this early Treehouse of Horror installment, a retelling of “The Raven” featuring Marge as Lenore and Bart as the titular bird, is the best of these.

Lisa meets a group of college students in her gymnastics class and pretends to be one of them in order to belong to a group of her intellectual equals. One of her new friends is re-reading Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow (one of a few Pynchon references that have appeared on the show), but more importantly, the episode includes one of The Simpsons’ best lit. moments. Lisa attends a reading from former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky (as himself), who gets some support from a group of frat dudes with “BASHO” painted on their stomachs. It did make us wonder about the possibility of a world where poetry slams sported SEC football-caliber tailgates.

Harry Potter has had a few nods as well, including a pretty-okay Treehouse of Horror installment. But it was Lisa’s encounter with the real J.K. Rowling that included the words all fans wanted to hear. When she asks the author what happens to Harry at the end of the series, she responds, “He grows up and marries you. Is that what you want to hear?”

And finally, the Hamlet episode, inspiring curricula since its airing. Although it’s certainly difficult to condense a five-act play into a digestible TV mini-sode, The Simpsons did it as only they could. The episode is notable for its expert use of Ralph Wiggum (“I’m gonna go kill Hamlet! Here’s my mad face.”), “Rosencarl and Guildenlenny,” Lisa’s brief cameo as Ophelia and Bart’s one-sentence review of the play, which sums up the feelings of so many: “How could a play with so much violence in it be so boring?”

Robert Downey Jr. + Paul Thomas Anderson + Thomas Pynchon = Awesome

Yesterday it was reported that Paul Thomas Anderson wants to adapt Thomas Pynchon’s recent psychedelic detective novel, Inherent Vice, for the big screen. Well, today rumors are floating around that none other than Robert Downey Jr, the perfect choice to play a Pynchonian stoned sixties crime-solver named Doc Sportello, has been tapped to play just that role.

I’m still disappointed that the Anderson Scientology-based movie got nixed, but if this idea comes to fruition, it would more than make up for it. To get yourself psyched up, I recommend re-watching Downey’s previous turn as an unlikely party-boy actor turned self-appointed detective in the wildly underrated Kiss KIss Bang Bang. See the scene below for further proof.