Lipton’s Journal/December 8, 1954/26
Television may have some extraordinary quality apart from, or rather, far deeper than the “hypnotic” effect people ascribe to it. It may be some sort of anti-spasmodic like Lipton’s which opens one to the deeper “pulse” of life we all share. What confuses the character of it is that the values of the world are purveyed by it until the effect is headache—disturbance—one subsides more into the universe-world while more and more powerfully the real world beats upon us.
- Mailer was intrigued by the possibility that television’s monotony had a deadening effect on viewers. He explored his ideas on the medium in a long essay in Esquire (November 1977), titled “Of a Small and Modest Malignancy, Wicked and Bristling with Dots,” reprinted in Pieces and Pontifications (1982).