Richie sees dead people and other assorted clichés on a still engaging episode of Vinyl

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Am I right in assuming that most of you figured out Ernst was dead (or at least imaginary) from the moment Richie started talking to him? I say that not to flaunt any kind of intellectual superiority—I’m a very gullible viewer—but to point out how tired a device it is: the concept of a mentally unstable character with…