I dig Grantland a lot...

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also i think i've picked up a lot of purposeful non-investment in the tone of their music writing, which again is prob not "important" but kinda gets at me

J0rdan S., Friday, 27 April 2012 16:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

long thread but important

bill simmons IS bill simmons IN the book of BASKETBALL

am0n, Friday, 27 April 2012 16:25 (3 years ago) Permalink

also here's his sports version of "adele_plump_female_musicians_sex.php"


am0n, Friday, 27 April 2012 16:29 (3 years ago) Permalink

also also worst thread title ban NYCNative

am0n, Friday, 27 April 2012 16:31 (3 years ago) Permalink

Charles P. Pierce's articles are good (because he's a good writer who hopefully is getting paid wheelbarrows of cash by ESPN to slum)
Jonah Keri's 'The 30' weekly baseball round-up is also good

you could set the rest of the blog on fire, the wonder and amazement they have at the audacity of covering omg reality tv is fucking horrible

Kiarostami bag (milo z), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:03 (3 years ago) Permalink

oh also barnwell on football is solid

J0rdan S., Friday, 27 April 2012 18:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

Simmons idolizing Malcolm Gladwell probably tells the uninitiated everything they need to know.

Kiarostami bag (milo z), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:08 (3 years ago) Permalink

pretty much agree with the general consensus on this thread that the pop culture stuff is mostly bad, but the sports writing has occasional gems. i really liked colson whitehead on the poker tournament, and i enjoy the wrestling pieces though admittedly i know nothing at all about wrestling.

congratulations (n/a), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:12 (3 years ago) Permalink

pretty much off topic except that it's sports writing, but i read this recently and it is pretty much the best piece of non-fiction i've ever read about poker:

i highly recommend

Mordy, Friday, 27 April 2012 18:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

yeah that's considered a classic. i think i have it at my parents house somewhere

dharunravir (k3vin k.), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:22 (3 years ago) Permalink

also it sorta seems like aside from tv recaps they're aiming for "you're a 45 year old trying to retain coolness, here's all the stuff you missed today that other people have been flogging for the last six hours"

Somehow this description of it made me realize I am OK with being in Grantland's target demo. And realizing that me passive-aggressively saying I'm OK with that means I've been there for years already.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:23 (3 years ago) Permalink

I guess I didn't really know this was Jonah Keri's outlet now.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Friday, 27 April 2012 18:26 (3 years ago) Permalink

Grantland is brimming with NBA playoff excitement. You may have already noticed.


you can expect punches, kicks and even worse (frogbs), Friday, 27 April 2012 21:00 (3 years ago) Permalink

this is the only thing i've seen on grantland worth reading


am0n, Friday, 27 April 2012 21:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

Grantland is great for me because it allows me to a) catch up with cable shows that I can't be bothered downloading but get bought up in polite conversation amongst hipster circles in my part of the world and b) sometimes read some non-retarded writing about North American sport.

Clive "The Chip" Crinkly (King Boy Pato), Friday, 27 April 2012 23:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

all of their articles are too long

polyphonic, Friday, 27 April 2012 23:25 (3 years ago) Permalink

this is one of the best non-specialist pieces abt stan lee i've ever read:


pat rice memorial barbecue (Ward Fowler), Friday, 11 May 2012 13:52 (3 years ago) Permalink

the Greg Oden piece is really good and IMO exactly the sort of thing this site *should* be doing

frogbs, Friday, 11 May 2012 13:59 (3 years ago) Permalink

I like this site, even though I find Simmons really annoying, unless he is talking about any team in the NBA except the Celtics.

Charles Pierce is excellent.

One Way Ticket on the 1277 Express (Bill Magill), Friday, 11 May 2012 14:14 (3 years ago) Permalink

imo the site has like a 40/60 hit/miss ratio which really isn't all that bad. i do think they've assembled a pretty good stable of writers. the pop culture stuff seems to be kinda bland but it's not offensive which is probably half the battle.

call all destroyer, Friday, 11 May 2012 14:15 (3 years ago) Permalink

They are at least trying to be relatively intelligent. Most of ESPN content, on all of its platforms, is written/produced by morons, for morons, so to see at least an attempt at being smart is somewhat refreshing.

One Way Ticket on the 1277 Express (Bill Magill), Friday, 11 May 2012 14:18 (3 years ago) Permalink

it's certainly better than it was! the character pieces are definitely good, especially the Amarillo Slim one

frogbs, Friday, 11 May 2012 14:19 (3 years ago) Permalink

4 months pass...

i really wish this wasn't the kind of thing molly lambert wrote for grantland:


Mordy, Thursday, 4 October 2012 21:15 (3 years ago) Permalink

What is an example of something she has written that isn't a complete waste of time.

pun lovin criminal (polyphonic), Thursday, 4 October 2012 21:34 (3 years ago) Permalink

i like her stuff from thisrecording.com:


Mordy, Thursday, 4 October 2012 21:53 (3 years ago) Permalink

would much rather read about sweet celeb gossip than some stupid bullshit about telephone poles

turds (Hungry4Ass), Thursday, 4 October 2012 22:02 (3 years ago) Permalink

turds (Hungry4Ass), Thursday, 4 October 2012 22:04 (3 years ago) Permalink

i find the celeb gossip stuff really boring and i don't even get that she's doing anything interesting w/ it? idk, celeb gossip is maybe a cultural blind spot for me and maybe there are grantland readers that are like, "thank god molly lambert is finally breaking down gossip in a compelling + vital way, this was much more important than when she was writing critical theory about gender identity." seems like a waste to me.

Mordy, Thursday, 4 October 2012 22:14 (3 years ago) Permalink

mordy totally otm grantland wastes the great molly lambert :(

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 01:59 (3 years ago) Permalink

i like gossip a lot but i don't get that feature

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 01:59 (3 years ago) Permalink

all the hyperlinks in her thisrecording pieces drive me up the wall, because im incapable of preventing myself from hovering each one and evaluating if its worth opening in a new tab. i hate it!!!

turds (Hungry4Ass), Friday, 5 October 2012 02:13 (3 years ago) Permalink

haha. i still read grantland, i like that there's a writer powerful and popular enough that a mega corporation would give him an entire website and staff just to keep him happy. as far as simmons toys go it's no 30 for 30 but i do appreciate that it does have some interest in longform stuff, that it's clearly guided by someone who's interested in some idea of 'good writing' as opposed to standard seo stuff. nobody w/ any familiarity w/ simmons can be surprised by the gap between it's sports coverage vs it's pop culture coverage - model for sports coverage is the national and golden age si, model for pop coverage is vulture. he's a guy who's seen almost famous a million times (and will let you know) but has little to no interest in actually reading lester bangs. feel like stuff like the lambert tabloid thing is simmons pandering to some idea of what he imagines his wife wants to read or providing cover for his sorta odd interest in stuff like reality tv, celeb gossip, etc.

balls, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:30 (3 years ago) Permalink

yeah that feels about right

call all destroyer, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:31 (3 years ago) Permalink

grantland is a blackhole

lag∞n, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:33 (3 years ago) Permalink

at the beginning of grantland she wrote more sustained celeb gossip type pieces, like a "normal" version of her stuff for thisrecording. i remember liking the one about jennifer aniston. i just don't get the almost-copying-pages-of-us-weekly-verbatim new-style lambert columns. they're unreadable!

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:36 (3 years ago) Permalink

yah they're pretty useless

call all destroyer, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:38 (3 years ago) Permalink

she doesnt tweet v much anymore either

lag∞n, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:38 (3 years ago) Permalink


i miss you, molly!

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:40 (3 years ago) Permalink

maybe she's working on a book? i hope so!

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:41 (3 years ago) Permalink

i would even read a whole book about goddamn mad men that she's so obsessed with.

horseshoe, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:42 (3 years ago) Permalink

i would read that book

call all destroyer, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:42 (3 years ago) Permalink

they have both a good baseball writer (Jonah Keri) and a good football one (Bill Barnwell), plus every once in a while there's a neat podcast (like the Obama one), it's not exactly a great website but I kinda dig it now

frogbs, Friday, 5 October 2012 02:43 (3 years ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

okay they got Norm MacDonald writing for them now, I'm officially a fan

We were trying to come up with New Year’s resolutions. Adam, sober now for over a year but nonetheless still somewhat interesting, said, “Hey, do New Year’s resolutions always have to be good for you?” The thought had never occurred to me. It’d be a helluva lot easier to stick with a New Year's resolution if your resolution was to become a big fat guy, right?

frogbs, Tuesday, 8 January 2013 16:42 (2 years ago) Permalink

The physical Grantland books themselves are beautiful.

sandwich shortage (Eazy), Tuesday, 8 January 2013 16:46 (2 years ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...
6 months pass...

the Grantland 64 song best of the millenium thus far bracket is.....kinda depressing? maybe of sociological interest?

Tenative conclusions: white guys from 35-45 are overinvested in thinking Jay and Kanye are still in their prime.....

8 remaining songs look to be:

Rolling, Maybe, Paris, Empire, Paper, Ignition, Yeah!, Hey Ya!

Swag Heathen (theStalePrince), Monday, 26 August 2013 19:03 (2 years ago) Permalink

kanye is still in his prime

Treeship, Monday, 26 August 2013 19:05 (2 years ago) Permalink

i voted paper but brightside seems to be winning atm

Mordy , Monday, 26 August 2013 19:06 (2 years ago) Permalink

thought it was pretty funny how they just c+p'ed p4k's best of the decade list

k3vin k., Tuesday, 27 August 2013 05:52 (2 years ago) Permalink

kanye is still in his prime

― Treeship, Monday, August 26, 2013 12:05 PM (10 hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Yeah in the same way that Kobe is.

I’m pissed off for greatness (Spottie_Ottie_Dope), Tuesday, 27 August 2013 06:00 (2 years ago) Permalink

Jason Conception must be pissed about cancelling his dothraki classes

panettone for the painfully alone (mayor jingleberries), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 01:53 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

that freddie post is interesting in its assessment of cultural criticism but it's completely insane to me that while writing about a publication that died because of finances he's unable to connect the economic reality of cultural criticism to what he calls "upper middlebrow" i.e. if a publication that did an entire week's worth of cross-platform content on paul thomas anderson couldn't survive then the last thing that publication needs to do is dedicate those resources to wong kar wai

J0rdan S., Tuesday, 3 November 2015 01:59 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

Yeah, and neither seems a sound strategy if views and making money is your goal.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 02:02 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

Jordan I wish that was true and I'm on the other side of the business from you so what do I know really, but seriously, the chances Jason Concepcion gets to do all these things: http://grantland.com/contributors/jason-concepcion/ (keep hitting 'more') seem basically nil. The piece where Jason and Rafe Bartholomew went to go witness the Filipino basketball scene together isn't going to happen anywhere else, and I loved that one.

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 02:09 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

If you read Grantland for the sports coverage, then yes, many of those writers will probably get to do the same stuff somewhere else, but we're missing them doing any of the other stuff they got to do, which to me was the main draw of the site. I didn't ever care that much for the straight coverage of major league sports, I cared about when they went sideways into unfamiliar territory or got to approach the major sports from angles that only worked in the context of that particular playground.

Again, like Sports on Earth before it got all serious and boring. At least the Dissolve just elected to die quietly instead of turning into a strict review site.

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 02:14 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

kind of agree, amidst the middlebrow grantland also ran some pretty offbeat stuff. i wasn't a big reader of their features but was re-reading that weird existential sumo story they did yesterday, not sure where else anyone will get to do that.

call all destroyer, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 02:43 (3 weeks ago) Permalink


IMO, the Brian Phillips travel pieces are about as close to John McPhee's old school best as we get.
One could argue that kind of journalism has been superseded by television expedition stuff like Top Gear specials, Parts Unknown and Dirty Jobs, but only one of those three things is still going and who knows how long Bourdain wants to keep that up. For me, prose always wins out, but now we know it can't ever sell ads like teevee, and that just spells bad news for history.

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 04:01 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

fdb is terrible and stupid as usual, his commentary revealing his own anxieties more than any actual truths

But there’s also a profound distrust of any art that’s cast as stuffy, or elitist. Opera, ballet and experimental theater are all routinely derided for their supposed elitism, even as they struggle to merely survive in a brutal financial landscape for the arts.

yes those roving bands on miscreants laughing about opera and ballet heavens.

Not Merzbow, but Chvrches. Not The Paris Review, but The Atlantic.

who will speak for the paris review i ask you, who who.

I’ve found his work difficult to enjoy, for a simple reason: essentially everything he writes is written against some other opinion or attitude.

physician, heal thy etc

Grantland writers looked out from the very center of trendy, hip, knowing opinion and spoke as if they were speaking from the margins.

did i just say "physician" already? crap

In the era of the Internet, our opinions often feel like what we are, like we have no self aside from our opinions. And what better way to define a self than by contrasting it with all the selves it’s not?

yep, more of the same. dude can't read the back of a cereal box without somehow feeling like its putting him on the spot for not fitting in with its cultural construction of individual consumptive desire or something.

big WHOIS aka the nameserver (s.clover), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 04:45 (3 weeks ago) Permalink


I didn't read their film coverage enough to weigh in on this:

Grantland was the epicenter of this cult of the upper-middlebrow. In a well-crafted (if somewhat overwrought) eulogy of Grantland for The New Republic, Alex Shephard and Mark Krotov highlight the site’s Paul Thomas Anderson Week, a multimedia, cross-site event that brought a tremendous amount of firepower to examining the filmmaker in every way imaginable. The event produced a lot of incisive commentary, and with its combination of various media and diversity of lenses, demonstrated the huge potential of web-native publishing. But it’s worth noting that Grantland on PT Anderson was an impossibly perfect combination of subject and venue. Mr. Anderson, an incredibly gifted filmmaker, occupies the upper-middlebrow perfectly, making movies that are labeled “indie” but which are treated like an event by our press, the kind of movie you usually take in at a specialty cinema but which aren’t impossible to find at the multiplex. Again, this isn’t a critical judgment of Anderson’s work, which is fantastic, but a recognition of a certain sweet spot in our culture industries that signify good taste without inviting accusations of pretension. It’s hard to imagine Grantland devoting a week to Lars von Trier, let alone Wong Kar-Wai

― curmudgeon, Monday, November 2, 2015 3:58 PM (7 hours ago)

grantland was pure middlebrow, like probably exactly what dwight mcdonald had in mind when he used the term

k3vin k., Tuesday, 3 November 2015 05:02 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

Yes those Charlie Pierce and Wesley Morris pieces were pure middlebrow

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 3 November 2015 05:06 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

The sports blogger Tom Hitchner wrote recently about the tendency of sports commentators to find random, dumb, uninfluential opinions to dispute, even when those opinions are held by almost no one, simply to represent themselves as the wiser and cooler party. Too often, writers at Grantland played into this tendency, engaging in verbal eye-rolling about the idiocy of those who might disagree with them rather than just making their case.

I think this is OTM about a broader trend but I wouldn't pin it on Grantland. I feel like Freddie is very sharp on how online discourse works but I always have to filter out his various tedious bugbears about popular culture.

impossible raver (Re-Make/Re-Model), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 09:42 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

Haven't told my parents about Grantland, because 1)I like that someone still thinks it exists and 2)I'm testing how irregularly they read me

skateboards are the new combover (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 15:42 (3 weeks ago) Permalink

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