The Open Book: Mark Twain

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, AKA Mark Twain, came into the world at the heels of Halley’s Comet in 1835 and left it the same way in 1910. In his own words, “The Almighty has said, no doubt: ‘Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they…

The Most Memorable Simpsons Tropes

In 1989, The Simpsons came on our television sets, took everything we thought we knew about animation, and kicked it in the crotch. This was no mindless Saturday-morning pap, no standard superhero reiteration. Instead, it was sharp satire,…

50 Quotes from 50 Classics

Many publications—and, well, all publishers—are in the business of telling us which books are best. From TIME magazine, to the Guardian, to Entertainment Weekly and the Modern Library, endless and ever-changing lists of the world’s greatest…

Taking Rory Gilmore Off Her Pedestal

Rory Gilmore is painted as the ideal offspring: a mature, responsible, studious, polite overachiever with fortunate looks. She’s popular among her peers, adored by all adults, and admired by strangers. She’s ambitious but humble. She spends…