Paper Monitor: Making a meth of it

A scene from Breaking Bad

In the latest episode of popular methamphetamine-based US TV drama Breaking Bad, reference is made to a New York Times column by Andrew Ross Sorkin.

Today, the newspaper nicknamed the Gray Lady for its status as a publication of record runs an extract from that fictional article.

In keeping with the show's plot, it alleges that a company has links to Breaking Bad's anti-hero, the chemistry teacher turned drug dealer Walter White.

"Mr White could not be reached for comment," it concludes, knowingly.

The magic is broken at the very end by an italicised footnote: "Yes, this is a fictional parody, in case there is any doubt!"

Paper Monitor wonders whether that was strictly necessary. NYT readers are supposed to be an intelligent bunch, after all.

Plus, the 1980s Yellow Pages adverts inspired no fewer than three books about fly-fishing supposedly written by the elderly JR Hartley.

The fictional universe in which Sorkin reports on the activities of New Mexico drug kingpins surely has scope to be explored further.

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