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Remarkable Rolling Stone story

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by WaylonJennings, Nov 6, 2008.

  1. It's about the Mexican drug cartels, which are basically threatening to drag the country into civil war. You have a couple of requisite RS barbs about the U.S. "War on Drugs," of course, but it's an enormous story and the job that the writer, Guy Lawson, did, is simply astonishing.

    He basically did everything he could to try to secure an interview with this maniac drug cartel czar down there, getting in cars with people and driving into the mountains, etc., etc. I guess we can debate whether that's fearless journalism or simply stupidity, but I sure appreciated the front-row seat.

    This place makes "The Wire" look like "The Cosby Show."

    P.S. I bet Guy Lawson would have gone ahead and knocked on Elvis Grbac's door! ;D

  2. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

    Another remarkable RS story was the one in the (latest) issue with Obama on the cover about the reporter imbedding himself with the Taliban. Real crucial reporting in there.
  3. People talk about RS like it's a dinosaur, and I guess in some ways it is. But some of their worldaffairs reporting and writing is astounding. Just really visceral. They don't just quote a bunch of experts and write it up. They get dirty.
  4. Cousin Jeffrey

    Cousin Jeffrey Active Member

    I've found most of the people who criticize RS don't actually read it. Or they just see the Hills cast on the cover and lament the fall of the magazine and move along.

    (the funniest RS anecdote was from a young would-be sportswriter a few months ago, who, when I was praising the mag, replied, "It's a lot like the ESPN the Magazine right?" No, I said, it's pretty much the exact opposite. Maybe he figured all oversize mags are the same.)
  5. Elliotte Friedman

    Elliotte Friedman Moderator Staff Member


    To me, Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair are eerily similar. When both mags want to do a story like this one, nobody does it better. Well-written, brilliantly reported, can't put it down.

    But both mags also just get down and unfailingly lick the taint of whatever superstar they idolize at the time. I've never understood how these two can play the tough guy before bending over for some lame actor who won't give them the time of day without a cover.
  6. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    Because "My Day at the Spa with Vince Vaughn" or "Why we Love Charlize Theron" pays for the great reporting on the other stories. That simple.

    And Guy Lawson is the real thing. Go back a couple of years and find "Hockey Nights" in Harper's. Textbook.
  7. In Exile

    In Exile Member

    ALso "Merve Curls Lead," Saturday Night. Lawson is terriific.
  8. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

    See Wentz, Pete and Doherty, Pete
  9. Cousin Jeffrey

    Cousin Jeffrey Active Member

    I like music, so i find rolling stone more readable than VF, which also suffers from too much clutter. though my friend and i always joke the first story, every issue, is how music sales are down and the industry is in trouble.

    i miss rob sheffield, though, his pop culture stuff was hilarious.

    RS's political coverage was great. Yes, Taibbi is obnoxious at times, but he has a great voice and once you gut through a page of expletive-laden attacks, his main points are almost always cogent and illustrative to the ills of our political system. Dickinson's McCain story was a bit too harsh, but still different and interesting.
  10. Don't know if it is great or not. The online excerpt is only two pages of facts and thin descripition.
  11. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    Can't believe Playboy wasted space on an interview with Pete Wentz a couple of issues back.

    Haven't cracked the new RS yet - the one with the AC/Dc cover - as I am saving that for a long road trip tomorrow, but the Taliban story in the Obama issue was very impressive.

    What's everyone think of the new look RS? I like it as it doesn't get wrecked in my mailbox or bag anymore. Looks like they are adding some new features (no upgrade or expansion of the reviews section, sadly). Add me to those who miss Rob Sheffield.
  12. Jones

    Jones Active Member

    That is a great goddamn story. I read it years ago, and I can still remember most of it. Hugely entertaining.
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