This angle is the tilted camera angle, a staple of German expressionist cinema. It is also known as the Dutch Tilt, the Oblique Angle and the Batman Angle. It has since become a hackneyed manoeuvre reviled by critics. More thorough analysis of the rise and fall of the technique can be found here.
Here, the viewpoint implies the perspective of a German pilot or rocket.
This is a reference to Maxwell's Demon, a thought experiment related to the philosophy of thermal and statistical physics. Created by James Clerk Maxwell, the experiment aims to demonstrate that the Second Law of Thermodynamics has only a statistical certainty.
In the imagined experiment, a container is split by an inner partition with a door in it. Within the container resides a demon, who can open the door selectively whenever a fast-moving (hot) molecule approaches, so causing one side to get warmer than the other.
This activity would appear to contradict the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which states that under such circumstances, the two sides would eventually reach an equilibrium temperature.
Maxwell's demon also makes an appearance in Pynchon's previous novel, The Crying of Lot 49.
Like his namesake, Blodgett Waxwing is able to carry and deposit his deadly cargo without damage to himself.
Sir John Tenniel (1820-1914) was a British illustrator and cartoonist, most widely known for his work on Lewis Carroll's works Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, as well as his work with Punch magazine.
Dr. Albert Hoffman (1906-2008), a Swiss scientist, was the first person to experiment personally and learn of the psychedelic effects of LSD. He was employed at Sandoz Laboratories in Basel, Switzerland, conducting his research in the pharmaceutical-chemical department.
He campaigned throughout his life for LSD's use in psychiatry. He felt that the drug had been misused by the countercultural generation of the 1960s. Eventually, the Swiss government allowed for trial use of the drug with patients suffering from terminal cancer and similar conditions.
Dr. Hoffman died in 2008, aged 102.