Photo illustration: Save As; Source: Everette Collection

After pulling the trigger in Hollywood’s most ominous drive-by, Lloyd Avery II began to mirror the lifestyle of the gangster he portrayed on-screen. But the late actor’s demise is much deeper than life imitating art.

Based on numbers alone, Lloyd Avery II’s character in Boyz N the Hood is a minor role. Four scenes. About eight lines of dialogue. At most, two minutes of screen time. He’s listed in the credits as Knucklehead #2, but fans of the film know him as the Blood who shot Ricky. He’s best remembered emerging from that cardinal red Hyundai clutching a sawed-off shotgun like he’s death incarnate, set to perpetrate one of the most tragic movie murders of all time. Radiating intensity, Avery’s charisma elevates this nameless henchman into an iconic villain.

“Lloyd had a presence that I…


The best emcees never fall off, but that doesn’t mean they stay hot forever

Illustration: Adrian Mangel

The photo shoot was a wrap. The interview had concluded an hour earlier. Nas was now off the clock, but here he was, deep in the bowels of Hollywood’s Westlake Studios, refilling his Patron and Country Time lemonade, and gossiping about the rap industry.

It was January 2008, six months before the release of Untitled — the album Nas wanted to name something other than Untitled — and he had agreed to a wide-ranging interview with me for King Magazine to address the brewing controversy over the album title. A notoriously reticent interview subject, on this day Nas was talkative…


Howard Dean. Photography by Justin Kaneps

He represented the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party. Then the party changed.

On November 10, 2016, two days after Donald Trump was elected president, Howard Dean declared his candidacy for the chair of the Democratic National Committee. “Fuck off, lobbyist,” came one reply on Twitter.

The six-term former governor of Vermont appeared tailored for a return to the DNC and the post he first filled in 2005. But much had changed since Dean left the DNC in 2009, with Obama in the White House and Dean still a lodestar for the progressive base of the party.

Upon his announcement, he was flogged for everything from his endorsement of Hillary Clinton to his…


Photo Illustration by Tessa Modi, Photograph by Henry Diltz/Getty Images

An oral history of Woodstock ’94, the funnest Woodstock of all. (Read on if you don’t believe us, and also if you do.)

On the morning of the biggest concert of their career, Nine Inch Nails woke up on their tour bus backstage at Woodstock ’94 to the sounds of bullhorns and shouting firemen. “Don’t touch anything! Don’t open the doors!” A downed power line had landed on the bus. “They weren’t saying we would have gotten horribly electrocuted if we touched anything metal,” remembers drummer Chris Vrenna, “but they weren’t saying we wouldn’t either.” Groggy, and trying to make sense of the situation, Vrenna focused on three familiar faces rubbernecking outside his window. It was Crosby, Stills, and Nash.

Eventually, the power…

Thomas Golianopoulos

Thomas Golianopoulos is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Grantland, the Ringer, BuzzFeed, Complex, and other publications.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store