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Western Civilization: A Retrospective

As we all now know, Western Civilization is apparently coming to an end. This isn’t entirely a bad thing (um, slavery? genocide?), but it’s also not the end many of us were hoping for. So, in the spirit of a good reunion episode, today at Avidly we’re looking back to the good times to offer you a list of moments that, in retrospect, might have been the high-water mark of Western Civilization.


Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman.

Happy hour.

Beyoncé gifs.

That time Beyoncé and Jay Z took Blue Ivy to see Kara Walker’s sugar sphinx.

Dog parks.

Carmina Burana.

Gloria Estefan.

Lauren Bacall.

The MTA.

The WPA.

Stevie Nicks blaming it on her wild heart.

Planned Parenthood.

Prince’s solo in “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.”

Julie Newmar as Catwoman.

Missy Elliot: “blah blah blah blah.”

Iced coffee.

US Weekly.

Beer and a shot at 4 pm.

Lying in the bath and also running the shower.

These six and a half minutes.

So You Think You Can Dance, Season 4.


Every scene in “Now, Voyager” where Bette Davis smokes.

The “Parents” episode of “Master of None.”

Stormy Weather.”

Really hot and salty french fries.

^^with Prosecco.

The dance numbers in The Wiz.

Linda Ronstadt’s voice (every time but maybe especially this one).

All of Satan’s lines in “Paradise Lost.”

All of Satan’s lines from “Paradise Lost” that Ahab echos in Moby-Dick.

All of Ahab’s lines in Moby-Dick that Ricardo Montalbán repeats in “Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan.”

Ricardo Montalbán.

Volleyball scene in Top Gun.

Alice Walker dating Tracy Chapman.

All pictures of Patti Smith’s hair, including but not only the ones taken by Robert Mapplethorpe.

Probably not “The Music of the Night” but definitely maybe “The Rhythm of the Night”

Maybe Michelle Pfeiffer’s leather jacket in Grease 2.

“There’s a certain slant of light/winter afternoons”

Eartha Kitt as Catwoman.



Free verse.

The Color Purple.

The tango.

Tank tops.


Vanilla milkshake at the beach.

Surf guitar.

Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome winning “Best Kiss” for “Moonlight” at the MTV Movie awards.

Italian plum cake.

Alan Rickman, Juliet Stevenson, and the cello in Truly, Madly, Deeply.

Probably not Halle Berry as Catwoman.

Serena Williams (ongoing).

Sarah, Sarah, & Jordan

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