So today at Slate there's an awful lot of content concerning the one thing that everybody there cares an awful lot about, which is Mad Men, and former managing editor of PEN America (!) David Haglund takes it upon himself to explain to everybody what "ye-ye" was, and the whole deal with that song what's-her-nut sings in French, and What It All Means. It's good to get these ballpark estimates concerning what constitutes socially acceptable droolerdom among the Park-Slopey chattering classes, I admit, but what caught my eye particularly in Haglund's very thoroughly detailed exegesis was the following passage about one Gillian Hills, who recorded the "original" of "that French song:" "In 1966, the year tonight's Mad Men episode takes place, Hills appeared in Blow-Up, perhaps the quintessential Swinging Sixties film (the movie was a surprise hit in the U.S., and helped kill off the Production Code.) She played an aspiring model who has a threesome with the lead character, a photographer played by David Hemmings, and another aspiring model, played by Jane Birkin. (Hills sort of reprised this role in A Clockwork Orange, in which her character partcipates, to quote IMDb, 'in an afternoon sex marathon to the music of the William Tell overture' with the protagonist, Alex, and her character's best friend.)"
Letting be the whole "music of the William Tell overture" thing (like, as opposed to the "choreography of the William Tell overture?"); what cocked my eyebrow on reading was the "character's best friend" bit. Like, huh? The two girls Alex picks up in the record shop have precisely one line between them, the one about whether "Bratty" (the girl played by Hills, FTR) is gonna pick up a record by "Googly Gogol" or "Johnny Zhivago." That's it. There's no, "If you get Johnny Zhivago, I'm sure you'll lend it to me, being my best friend and all." I mean, really, they could have just met, each having spotted the same five-pound-note on the street and agreeing to cooperate and split it by buying an LP each. Or they could be cousins, which would make the whole three-way thing that much sicker. I just think the flat "best friend" declaration presumes too much. Also, I played the fast-motion sex scene back in step mode, to see if I could catch any interaction between the girls that would indicate that level of intimacy, and I still insist that Haglund is reaching here.