Posts Tagged: grantland

Do Not Pass Go

One thing users can't do in GTA V? Play as a female character. The game doesn’t feature any playable women, Rockstar Games co-founder and VP of creativity Dan Houser said, because "the concept of being masculine was so key to this story," just like it has apparently been key to every previous GTA installment.

It's frustrating, to say the least, that a vanguard company like Rockstar Games brushes off the idea of allowing for female leads with statements like Houser's. While it's not an outright "fuck you" to female gamers, it's a pretty implicit one. The decision to have three characters allows for what Houser calls "nuanced stories, not [...]


Charli XCX and the Rules of Pop Stardom

There's a great article up at Grantland about the liminal space in the pop-star universe currently inhabited by Charli XCX, young mistress of throwback UK doom-candy (cf. the above video). Amos Barshad investigates: why is a pretty girl with serious stage presence and an album stuffed with pop anthems playing Glasslands in Brooklyn rather than arenas all over the world? And why would someone ever write the ubiquitous "I Love It" and give it away, thus catapulting a different band from the Pitchfork circuit to the very top of the charts?

For alt-pop stars — the pretty young things with radio-friendly aspirations and support from the machine [...]


Good Bourbon

"If you know what Pappy Van Winkle is, you're already mad at me. If you don't, I'm about to change your life. Pappy, officially called Family Reserve, is the top-of-the-line bourbon made by The Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery. It comes in 15, 20, and 23 years old. There's a cult." —To your health.


Which Song Is Better? Nope, You're Wrong

The fine trolls at Grantland launched their "Best Song of the Millennium" bracket today, and it is important that we use this space to complain about the choices, the seeds, the current leaders, and the many injustices of life itself, generally. I'll start: I do not want to live in a world in which "Feel Good Inc." outpaces "Rehab." I do not want to live in a world in which "Umbrella" outpaces "Int'l Players Anthem (I Choose You)," which, we can all agree, has the greatest letting-of-the-beat-build of all time. I will allow a world in which the Yeah Yeah Yeahs' "Maps" outpaces Beyoncé's "Crazy In Love" because [...]


What You're Missing at Sundance: Meh, Not Too Much?

The first humbling is the airport. Salt Lake City International, around 11 a.m. Baggage claim has been repurposed into a holding pen — L.A. blondes in fur-cuffed ski jackets, men wearing big puffy coats with strange, sun-like logos on the sleeves. Cowboy hats, bright pink vests, Burberry bags. All the women’s boots are huge and excessive and trimmed with what seem like entire menageries of tiny, hirsute animals.

So far, despite what that quote would lead you to believe, Zach Baron's dispatches from Sundance contain just the right mix of information about the movies and celebrity gossip. Por ejemplo, he watched a Michael Cera vehicle ("It’s hard to overstate [...]


The Other 5150

Over at Grantland, Molly Lambert methodically walks us through the Amanda Bynes saga in the most matter-of-fact tone possible, and the effect is appropriately disquieting:

Those under a 5150 hold are promised "dignity, privacy, and humane care," but in the case of stars like Spears or Bynes, the first two are almost always breached. Another witness, who says they saw Bynes's arson and made a 911 call, claimed that Bynes was "creating a makeshift explosive" by placing a burning cloth over the mouth of the gas tank. The fire department put out the flames before the gas tank had a chance to explode. A normal 5150 lasts 72 hours, [...]


The Story of "Lost"

"The creation of Lost defies nearly everything we know about how successful television shows — or great ones — are made. The idea for Lost came not from a writer, but a network executive. The first writer on the project got fired. The replacement creative team had a fraction of the usual time to write, cast, and produce a pilot episode. The executive who had championed the show was himself fired before it ever aired. One of the two creators all but quit the moment the pilot was finished. Nearly every creative decision at the start of the show was made under the assumption that it would never succeed. Everyone [...]