The Village Voice takes aim at the New Yorker Festival, calling it "the Live Earth of the mind—minus the whole giving-the-proceeds-to-worthy-causes bit. Like Live Earth, the brand infuses the event; the festival features exactly the headliners you'd expect; and the whole production tends toward the endlessly self-congratulatory. Live Earth tickets are more dear, granted, but with New Yorker events running from $16 for a fiction reading to $100 for food tours through lower Manhattan, the competition is stiff." We'd ever so gently suggest that expecting anything associated with the New Yorker to not be "self-congratulatory" is either willingly naïve or charmingly optimistic, but we can't totally disagree with any piece that contains the line "The only satisfaction of the night came in realizing that [film critic David] Denby is just as irritating live as in print."

Pleased to Meet Me [VV]