The Hidden Utopia: Hobo Graffiti and Sixties Paranoia in ‘The Crying of Lot 49’

By Pepe Tesoro

Thomas Pynchon’s 1966 novel The Crying of Lot 49 is usually regarded as one of the best testimonies of Cold War paranoia and early psychedelic ’60s culture. Even though it is a keen and pointed exploration of the growing anxieties over the exponential post-war rise of mass media and market capitalism, the central conspiracy revealed in the novel doesn’t reproduce itself through the then-new and fascinating forces of radio waves or cathode rays…

The Unexpectedly Sharp Teeth of Summer: Giuni Russo’s ‘Un’Estate al Mare’

By Daniele Cassandro

For any Italian, the Summer of 1982 means one thing: the country’s victory at that year’s FIFA World Cup final. The faded images of the nation’s president, 86-year-old Sandro Pertini—a socialist partisan who had fought against Nazi-Fascism during World War II—practically beside himself with joy when Alessandro Altobelli scored the third goal against Germany…

Tubular Terrors: ‘The Night Stalker’

By Michael Grasso

Like many folks my age, I first encountered crusading news photographer Carl Kolchak (played by the imminently charismatic and recognizable Darren McGavin) thanks to The X-Files creator Chris Carter’s repeated praise of the character as one of the biggest influences on his creation of Mulder and Scully…