Long Reads this week looks at the lasting legacy of Friends, the challenges boxers face and the messiah of dance music.
I wonder about the enduring appeal of Friends. Why does it continue to resonate with new audiences despite it being more than a decade old? TV critic Andy Greenwald tried to find out the answer.
He boils it down to the simplicity of the show – it’s six people in their twenties who hang out at a coffee shop. He also realised that you can feel nostalgic for a show that is just over ten years old because it is before portable technology really took off. The central characters just sit there and talk: there are no mobiles, there’s no social media, they are just in the present and that’s it.
In my opinion, boxing is probably the toughest sport in the world. The mental strength it takes to just pull yourself through the training is without peer. You are solely responsible for you. To get in the ring and fight against someone equally determined as you, that’s determination or insanity. This article deals with that; young hungry fighters with no real other options trying to turn pro. The results are disastrous.
I discovered Larry Levan a few years ago with Stand On The World being a favourite tune, so this article was a pleasant surprise. Levan was a DJ in the late 70s who worked at the New York City nightclub Paradis. I knew he was good, I knew he pioneered sounds, but I didn’t appreciate how influential he was, so it was nice to read other DJs talking about it alongside their personal experiences with Levan.
The songs intercut in are the highlight and there are some good songs to take you through your Sunday.