A craft note — perhaps the aim is something overtly bullshit, but also compelling. To induce a feeling of awe at mentally inhabiting a thought castle of ornate bullshit. For me, it’s still important there be a truth to arrive at on the far shore of the bullshit. But maybe that truth is just that bullshit can be felt to be real.
And Pynchon feeling his way toward the next order of simulacra:
“There’ll never be a Thanatoid sitcom,” Ortho Bob confidently predicted, “cuz all they could show would be scenes of Thanatoids watching the tube.”
The last emotion available to Thanatoids, Pynchon writes presciently, here in 1990, is resentment.
Also thinking about the Pynchon > DeLillo > Wallace triad. Predecessor: Vonnegut. To one side: William Gibson. Gibson hooks in through the “shadowy conspiracy riding alongside pop culture” channel of Pynchon, as does DeLillo. DeLillo is always careful to leave the central macguffin completely empty however.