We're proud of our arts section today. Opinionated reviews of a bevy of new movies; our weird -- and weirdly celebrated -- ongoing coverage of "Survivor"; a geekily exhaustive analysis of "Mulholland Drive"; and tons of letters from equally opinionated and geeky readers.
If you're a regular reader we hope you like it as well, which is why we're not ashamed to look you in the eye, as it were, and say that Salon needs your help to keep this pace, and quality, going.
You may have noticed a tattoo of letters from Salon's editor, David Talbot, about Salon Premium. You might have noticed some of the celebrity testimonials as well. And you've probably also noticed the spate of gold-starred stories that Salon is offering to Premium subscribers only.
But if you're not a news junkie, you might not have noticed what the deal with Salon Premium is.
I'm here to tell you about it.
Salon has poured untold millions into building up one of the great news and commentary outlets in the world. We have a lot of advertisers -- companies who love our smart and sophisticated audience. But right now advertising is not paying all the bills, particularly considering the pits the economy has been in of late.
So we've turned to our readers for help.
We want you to do something you probably do already -- pay for remarkable journalism. For the price of a subscription to just about any major weekly magazine, Salon publishes a slew of material every day.
Investigative reporting, political dispatches from Capitol Hill, reviews, features, humor, entertainment coverage, sports coverage, gossip, sex -- you name it, we give it to you.
The truth is, it's serious stuff, written, edited, copyedited, illustrated and published by adults.
It wins awards, breaks news that again and again has hit front pages across the country and, most important (we hope), thrills readers.
It's not cheap, and it's hard to provide it for free.
So will you help us out and consider signing up for Salon Premium?
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Here's the pitch from the Arts & Entertainment section:
Have you read Eric Boehlert's scathing investigative reports about the new payola in the music business, in which virtually every song you hear on the radio is bought and paid for by record companies?
Have you been moved by the writing of Joyce Millman, as in her searching essay on the death of Buffy's mom last spring?
Were you shocked by Janelle Brown's report, "Raving lunacy," on how clumsy police departments are scotching the efforts by rave clubs to tone down drug use?
Did you delight in Charles Taylor's enthusiastic disemboweling of Ridley Scott's ultragory "Hannibal"?
Have you been engrossed, as we were, at Andrew O'Hehir's report on the enormous movie production of the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy?
And what about the casual contributions and meditations from an impressive array of occasional contributors -- Roger Ebert ("Movies the way God meant them to be seen"), David Thomson ("The Castaway -- Tom Hanks"), former White House Counsel John Dean ("Does 'Thirteen Days' Get It Right?"), Ellen Willis (on Bob Dylan's "Love and Theft"), Newsweek's Ray Sawhill (a luminous reflection on Robert Altman's "Nashville") and Andy Klein ("Everything You Wanted to Know About 'Memento'")?
For more than six years, David Talbot has urged us -- compelled us -- to publish writing of that caliber.
We'd like to keep doing it, for him, and for you, because the words that began this letter -- "Dear Reader" -- are the ones that are foremost in our minds every day.
The Salon arts staff