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Come back, John DeLorean.

Come back, John DeLorean. (photo)

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“District 9” — per the Ain’t It Cool crowd, the greatest film of all time, ever, at least this week — is out today. And Slate‘s Daniel Engber is bored by it. Why? Because “District 9” has a corporate villain, and “Could there be a more egregious sci-fi cliché?” Sci-fi is full of them: “Moon,” “Alien,” “Blade Runner,” “Terminator.” He’s not so wrong to be bored — bashing major corporations has become an exercise in the obvious, if well-timed one, though clearly not all these movies belong on the same playing field. And there’s more on the way: for your angry slumping economic pleasure, Frank Langella is set to join “Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps.” The recession movie may well be the new Iraq movie: a few years late and a bit too obvious, but here anyway.

What we need is a new corporate hero, someone to reinspire our faith in the American entrepreneurial spirit. That, at any rate, is the only conclusion I can draw from the news that four separate John DeLorean movies (three features, one documentary) are in the works.

DeLorean’s best remembered for a career-ending entrapment cocaine bust and his outrageous namesake car (as featured in “Back To The Future”), both of which made him a staple ’80s punchline. But it’s not hard to see why he’s coming back around: DeLorean may have flopped, but he never did it at the expense of shareholders. He was a high-roller who dated Raquel Welch, but he never screwed anyone but governments, creditors and intimates to get his status, and in the new non-ethics of corporate malfeasance, that’s practically endearing. He once changed the name of a company he owned in Utah from Logan Manufacturing to “Ecclesiastes 9:10-11-12,” but the piousness of the rebranding was just a way of delaying his creditors from claiming the company. Halfway between the tales of scrappy kids making right and the mess we’re in now, DeLorean — at one point a legitimately brilliant engineer — rests.

Alex Holmes of “House Of Saddam,” who’ll direct a biopic based on DeLorean’s unpublished memoirs, sees him as “an almost mythic figure.” His producer, Tamir Ardon, is making a documentary on DeLorean. There’s another in the works from veteran producer David Permut (of “Face/Off”). And then there’s the one I’d most like to see: script by James Toback, Robert Evans producing and, er, Brett Ratner directing. It’s totally understandable why Robert “The Kid Stays In The Picture” Evans would be interested in the story of a man who peaked in the ’70s and then suffered a long, public fall from grace, and Toback knows a thing or two about male hubris. Ratner… I’ll live with.

So welcome to the post-recession era: DeLorean is here to usher us back to a kindler, gentler form of meltdown. Corporations will never become benevolent executors of the public good anyway, so we might as well have some charming hustlers. Incidentally, this is not the first sign of the man’s re-emerging cultural currency. Last year a one-off band called Neon Neon released an album called “Stainless Style” all about DeLorean. It’s excellent. Here, contemplate “Dream Cars”:

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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