Bieber, Black Holes, Deadpool, and More: Today’s Recommended Reading


Here at Flavorwire, we pride ourselves on not only writing some of the best content on the Internet, but keeping an eye on all of the great writing that other folks on the ‘Net are doing, too. Today, we’ve got a beautifully subtle portrait of Justin Bieber, the history of Marvel’s Deadpool character, the first detection of gravitational waves, and the absurd tale of Kanye West’s zine launch party, which didn’t have any zines.

Vulture’s Abraham Riesman, who is kind of the Internet’s comic guru for those of us who pay very little attention to the finer points of comic books, dives deep into the history of Deadpool, the Ryan Reynolds-played star of what will probably be this weekend’s biggest box office winner. One of the best bits is about how Spider-Man influenced the character’s design.

“The simplicity of the mask was my absolute jealousy over Spider-Man and the fact that both of my buddies, [fellow Marvel artists] Erik Larsen and Todd McFarlane, would tell me, ‘I love drawing Spider-Man. You just do an oval and two big eyes. You’re in, you’re out.’” Spidey also loomed large in [creator Rob] Liefeld’s conception of the next creative building block: personality. For much of Spider-Man’s early existence following his 1962 debut, he was known for being a jokester — but those days were gone. “Spider-Man in 1990 was a depressed married guy,” Liefeld accurately recalls. “The Spider-Man I grew up with would make fun of you or punch you in the face and make small cracks. That was the entire intent with Deadpool.”

Over at GQ, writer and editor Caity Weaver took on the thankless task of interviewing one of the world’s favorite punching bags, Justin Bieber. It’s a good interview, but it reaches great heights because of Weaver���s sly commentary.

He can be difficult to talk to in other ways, too. He generally does not respond to irony. He speaks more quietly than a mouse that’s asleep, so you frequently have to ask him to repeat things. (More than once, sensing my anxiety that my recorder cannot detect the minuscule sound waves of his speech, he moves it closer to him, assuring me, “I got you.”) His responses to most questions are short, often monosyllabic—until you hit upon a topic he is comfortable discussing, such as his fans (who delight him) or God’s opinion of man, in which case he will talk without ceasing for nearly 1,000 words.

Wired has a writeup about the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and its discovery of the sound of colliding black holes. It’s scientifically complex and significant, so I won’t try to distill it too much, just read the thing.

This is big-deal physics, a long-awaited bit of evidence that vindicates the work of Albert Einstein, opens a new scientific field, and gives astronomers a peek at a side of the universe they’ve never seen. “We are not only going to be seeing the universe,” says Gabriela Gonzalez, an astrophysicist at Louisiana State University and spokesperson for the LIGO team. “We are going to be listening to it.”

Yeezy season is in full swing — our entire office is watching his fashion line/album launch stream right now — but it’s been happening for maybe a month. As part of the launch of Yeezy Season 3, he made zines, and had a party for the zine, but there were no zines at the party. Read about it, from Pitchfork.

Of course, maybe none of the other attendees were thinking about it this critically. For the most part, people just seemed obsessed with documenting that they were there or commenting on how there were so many “randos” outside. At one point, the dude in front of me in line groaned and remarked, “I have no idea how someone who is not associated with this would know about it.” I would hear many similarly snooty comments like this throughout the night, which is why it was so exciting to talk to the big Kanye fans who beat the system and snuck in. Unfortunately, it seemed like they didn’t let in anyone from the line of fans, which assembled around 7 p.m. and quickly snaked around the block.