Glorious American capitalism has advanced so much in the past year that the traditional "Black Friday" day of shopping hell has now become "Black Midnight," in which major big box retailers open their doors on the first, dark minute of the day after Thanksgiving, so that your time in pre-Christmas retail torment may be prolonged as much as possible. Target's doing it. Best Buy's doing it. But... but what about Wal-Mart?

Naturally, Wal-Mart, the actual physical manifestation of hell, has devised a plan that undermines the idea of "family time" even more. Stephanie Clifford reports:

[Wal-Mart] is expected to announce Thursday that it will start deals at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day nationwide.

At 10 p.m., Wal-Mart will offer specials on toys, home goods and apparel. Among the items will be men's Wrangler jeans for $9.97, and Barbie and Disney Princess fashion dolls for $5.

Cool. Now you can get trampled to death at Wal-Mart on Thanksgiving day itself, which will lend a noble, tragic air to the final moments of your otherwise unremarkable life.

[NYT. Photo: AP]