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5 minute read
Courtney Subramanian; Dan Macsai; Lily Rothman; Kelly Conniff

LOVE IT

TIME’s Lev Grossman calls Ann Patchett’s essay collection This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage “wise, funny and peerlessly, painfully honest.”

Daily Show correspondent John Oliver will get his own HBO talk show–and he credits it all to Jon Stewart: “If I fail … it’s entirely his fault.”

More than 13,000 people helped the Make-A-Wish Foundation turn San Francisco into Gotham City so 5-year-old Miles Scott–who’s battling leukemia–could be a real-life Batkid for a day.

A DVD-extra “alternate ending” reveals that Breaking Bad was actually a nightmare dreamed up by Bryan Cranston’s other TV staple, Hal from Malcolm in the Middle.

HAIKU REVIEW

Sing, O lads, of girls–the dance-y tracks are fun. But: Why all the ballads?

–LILY ROTHMAN ON ONE DIRECTION’S MIDNIGHT MEMORIES (OUT NOV. 25)

THE DIGITS

17,000%

Increase in usage of the word selfie–recently named Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year–since 2012. The term originated in 2002, when a man used it to describe a face-injury shot he posted to an Australian online forum.

MONEY SHOT

Helmut Newton was best known for photos, often in black and white, like 1986’s Fat Hand and Dollars, Monte Carlo, but he was also a big supporter of his fellow artists. Accordingly, a retrospective of his work is now being shown at his namesake foundation in Berlin (through May 18) alongside photos by Greg Gorman.

QUICK TALK

Sarah Silverman

The Emmy-winning comedian has already joked about selling the Vatican and encouraged her Jewish fans to get their Florida-resident bubbes to vote. Now Silverman, 42, returns to the rich comedy well of religion–and lots else–in her new special, We Are Miracles, premiering Nov. 23 on HBO.

–LILY ROTHMAN

Your special is called We Are Miracles. Has anything miraculous happened to you lately?

Uh …

It’s O.K., we can talk about Thanksgiving instead. As a vegetarian, what’s your go-to turkey substitute?

I do enjoy Tofurky, but there have been sad Thanksgivings where my sister and I just sat in my apartment eating out of a can of cranberry sauce with a fork and–Oh! I thought of a miraculous thing!

What is it?

I was walking down Fifth Avenue at, like, 2 in the morning with a friend. It’s cold and I’m all bundled up. In the distance I see another woman and a guy walking toward us. Then, without any words or anything, as we pass, the girl and I grabbed hands, spun around three times and then let go and kept walking.

Wow.

It was so magical.

You get asked a lot about the state of women in comedy. Does that bother you?

To be honest, that question is a relic of another time. I mean, this is a very real time for women right now. Our rights are being chipped away at. But women in comedy? Women run comedy. It’s all Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and Chelsea Handler and Melissa McCarthy. Those are the power players.

So will the question go away soon?

Maybe if I keep shaming you guys. But you know, I think the question is relevant because of that answer.

“ON MY RADAR

The British TV shows Orphan Black and Broadchurch

“I don’t know how to choose between all my babies. Television’s my passion. That’s probably not cool to say.”

Miley Cyrus’ Bangerz

“I like Patty Griffin, Johnny Cash, folk-country … but I listen to the radio.”

WHERE THERE’S SMOKE …

Almost anything can be art, and if you ask Olaf Breuning, that includes air itself–as seen here in Smoke Grid, a piece that will emit psychedelic smoke patterns on Dec. 4 in a park in Miami Beach. Breuning’s installation is one of dozens of open exhibitions for the public section of Art Basel Miami Beach (Dec. 5–8), which helps ensure that the renowned art festival isn’t just for wealthy collectors.

ROUNDUP

Holiday (Off)beats

These days, releasing a contemporary(ish) album of Christmas songs is basically a pop-music rite of passage. (See recent efforts from Kelly Clarkson, Justin Bieber, Mary J. Blige and more.) But what of the would-be additions to the holiday catalog that are a bit–shall we say–less than classic? Here, a look at some of the wackier attempts to make Christmas-music history.

KATE BUSH

“Misty” [the Snowman]

‘WHAT KIND OF SPIRIT IS THIS? HIS BREATH ALL MISTY … WHEN I KISS HIS ICE CREAM LIPS’

SUFJAN STEVENS

“Christmas Unicorn”

‘I’m a frantic shopper and a brave pill-popper … They say my kind are rare’

LADY GAGA

“Christmas Tree”

‘Light me up, put me on top, let’s Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la, la, la’

THE KILLERS

“Don’t Shoot Me Santa”

‘”OH, SANTA, I’VE BEEN WAITING ON YOU.” “THAT’S FUNNY, KID, BECAUSE I’VE BEEN COMING FOR YOU”‘

BOB DYLAN

“It Must Be Santa”

‘DASHER, DANCER, PRANCER, VIXEN, CARTER, REAGAN, BUSH AND CLINTON’

LEAVE IT

Some U.S. stamp enthusiasts are blasting the Postal Service for its new Harry Potter collection because the boy wizard is not American. Accio chill pill, anyone?

An Antwerp library copy of Fifty Shades of Grey tested positive for traces of herpes after two Belgium University researchers ran the world’s most random bacteriology experiment.

Budding YouTube star Chip Chocolate dropped a new single, “Cookie Dance.” The lyrics are fun (“Me and Mrs. Fields wakin’ bakin’ in the kitchen”), but the beat lacks flavor.

Kanye West’s “Bound 2” music video features wild stallions, ’90s-era CGI and too much topless Kim Kardashian.

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