Category Archives: News

My Favourite New Website: Rugby Friends

So one of the guys who commented on the first Power Rankings of the new NZNTM cycle was named Frase – who I presumed was Frase ex of Frase+Bri, now of Crystal Magic. Because he’d commented on this stuff in the past and so on. But then I saw his website was listed as, so I figured he was one of the ‘real sports’ fans who every so often chance upon DB. But seeing as he was commenting on something as un-‘real sports’ as Top Model I figured it was worth a lazy click.

I’m really glad I did. Rugby Friends is my new favourite website. I can’t see it ever being superseded. It’s just the best, stoopidest concept ever. I’m pretty sure (though not certain) it’s the product of the Crystal Magician, and would really like to know more about the concept (assuming there is a concept) – beyond the fact that they played rugby once on Friends. A couple more images after the jump, but really you just want to go and bask in its pointless glory. Continue reading


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Darts Hotties Take a Different Root

So my wife was watching English Premier League Darts coverage (no explanation necessary, right?) and came across these charming images. In the first, you’ll see a hand-made sign, made by some darts fans who decided to get creative with the sponsor’s message boards and vivids.

Despite Van Barneveld being just a point behind Wade, your eye just can’t help but be drawn to the massive Whyte & Mackay sign’s message. It was gone from the screen in an instant, thereby revealing the identity of the ‘she’ who ‘♥’s anal’:

Chavs, aye?

– Duncan


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Guest Post: Arise Sir Colin Meads, Racist

Radio One‘s Breakfast Host Aaron Hawkins, one half of the Deadcast: Balls! collaboration, weighs in on our greatest All Black’s unfortunate tendency to reveal himself in public pronouncements as an unapologetic bigot.

No black sheep for Col

The NZRU has never shied away from the straddling of Pro-Am values in the name of brand identification. What better way to sway rapidly galvanizing apathy towards the code’s top flight than a grainy illustration of Colin Meads playing his first Test at Carisbrook, urging you to buy tickets to what is billed as the venue’s ‘last ever’ Test match (thought the NZRU has said they will play the scheduled minnow matches at the 2011 World Cup there, so technically it is just the last All Blacks fixture). The House Of Pain – or House Of Taine as it was briefly and embarrassingly also known – is a victim of the professional era; the toilets and Press facilities don’t cut it on the international stage, and as a result a potentially city-bankrupting stadium is going up in its place. But that’s another argument entirely.

Appealing to traditionalism is one of the oldest tricks in the marketing playbook. The problem rugby really has is the Colonial and Apartheid baggage that comes with it. A quarter of a century after South Africa last competed at the Olympics, politicians in New Zealand were defending their racist touring parties to New Zealand. It was rednecks versus pinkos in a flour war for sport/politics supremacy. But we’ve all moved on. Mandela was freed, the ANC took over the government, and rugby gave itself a pat on the back for helping fix an appalling scenario it had aided and abetted for decades. Well done. Carry on.

It is hard work mining an appeal to the mud-in-your-eye, kick-and-ruck, long-tour, All-Blacks-with-day-jobs era without getting caught up in the uglier politics that drove much of it. Not just in the Republic, but also in the musty colonial exclusivity coming from the RFU in London and the class elitism that abounds internationally. But the players weren’t to blame, right? You can’t blame Colin Meads for South Africa treating their indigenous people worse than their animals, right?

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DeadBall Reader

In DeadBall Reader I’m going to throw up a bunch of links of what’s been causing me pause or just blowing my mind. Maybe I’ll (/we’ll) do it every once in a while, if for no other reason than a fuel for spirited conversation with Justin and Dave at the bar.

1. Basketbawful’s Word of the Day: Retired Legenditus, which featured this this little piece of genius (yes that’s trailing behind a plane across the Californian sky):


*** Continue reading

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TRU WARIER (Infinite Jest)


So I come back from sunny Samoa to find that all hell is breaking loose in the NBA pre-free agency season. Rasheed Wallace, a favourite of mine, is off to the Celtics, a decidedly non-favourite of mine. Trevor Ariza is, quite rightfully, cashing in his great post-season run and heading to the Rockets. Ben Wallace is leaving Chicago for the Pistons, and the whole league seems to be after Grant Hill. Players are going cheap.

It’s mid-level exceptions all over the place so teams that are over the cap and can afford to be are spending up on some coupon savings. But the weirdest and most exciting news is that Ron Artest, the craziest dude in the league, is moving to Los Angeles to join The Lake Show. One of the most intriguing teams in the league just got a whole heap more interesting.

Now, most people know Artest for jumping into the stands and punching a white dude from Detroit. If you haven’t seen it:


It’s weird looking back on it, but these nine minutes changed the NBA more than some/most Hall of Famers. These nine minutes are the reason players wear those stupid military style shirts that their stylist bought for them. These nine minutes are why NBA players don’t release rap singles anymore. These nine minutes are why there are so many flagrant fouls called these days. These nine minutes made the NBA whiter. David Stern shat his pants. What could be more threatening to middle America and corporate sponsors than a black star running into the stands to beat on a white fan? They said it was a disgrace and it was violence and it was hell freezeth over.

Artest was suspended for the rest of the year ad from hence forth he was some kind of Stephon Marbury strain of cancer. This is what Cedric THE Entertainer thought of it:


Artest might not be entirely at fault here but still, he is insane. He tried to pull down down Paul Pierce’s shorts fer God’s sake:


So, Artest is insane and Kobe Bryant is insane – no need to discuss the myriad of ways Kobe will need serious therapy once his career is over. Lamar Odom is so insane that he looks and lives like he’s animated. I am barely exaggerating. He lives in some crazy surf Technicolored Disney World eating candy all day, smiling his face off. And Pau Gasol is questionable at best. When Pau Gasol is the most normal guy on a Championship-contending team, things are looking up for the NBA. I can understand people hating Kobe and I can understand hating Artest and this probably makes the Lakers the most love-em-or-hate-em team in a season of what is shaping up to be a powerhouse of love-em-or-hate-em teams (Wallace joining Garnett, Shaq joining LeBron, The Spurs just in general).

Artest is the bizarro Kobe. Watching them battle in the playoffs this year was like watching Kobe playing against a funhouse mirror, Artest distorting his every move. It is going to be something special watching these five guys try to figure it all out. Artest just could be to the Lakers what Rodman was to the 95-98 Chicago Bulls. With the big teams all pulling out all the stops in their grasp for the jewelry, I am counting down the days till next season.

– Henry

P.S. Read Free Darko’s piece on how this deal makes LA the most NY team in the League.

Oh yeah, and there’s Artest’s tribute to MJ too:


While I am here, did everyone hear Lil’ Wayne’s (not so) new song Kobe Bryant? Not his best work, but it was topical two months ago and you don’t get that many non-political topical rap songs nowadays (until the whole MJ thing I guess).

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New Zealand's Next Top Model Power Rankings 8

Christobelle, Ruby and Laura look adoringly and respectfully at their friend and mentor, Hosanna

“She’s nuts. She’s insane. She’s crazy.” – Laura.

And now she’s in the final. You have to hand it to the girl. Hosanna’s had a sea of doubters from the start, and only weird teenage boys who’ve looked too hard at too many surfing magazines (if you know what I mean. And if you don’t, I mean masturbated over the Quicksilver and Rip Curl ads in surfing magazines. OK? That’s what I mean) think she’s remotely attractive. And she’s left our darling Ruby, the people’s champ, in her dust. For those who’ve forgotten/intentionally-deleted-such-information-from-their-memory, this is what the two ‘models’ look like side-by-side.

The beautiful and entirely sane HosannaRuby, a pretty girl, but not nearly so pretty as Hosanna

Thankfully the judges spared us the embarassment of having a minger like Ruby in the final, and instead we can feast our eyes on that magnificent example of the female of the species this Friday.

In all fairness, this week Hosanna was not the fourth-best model. That would be Laura, who for the second week running limped through the episode sulking and snarking, and was somehow spared the axe. You get the strong feeling that the twin imperatives of the show are in conflict here. Because she’s clearly at least the second best model on the show, but equally clearly not amongst the three best Top Models. So she gets to stay because the fashion end of this wants a usable champion, Hosanna stays because she pulled out some huge performances based on a brain which is programmed perfectly for this one thing alone. Ruby loses out, though as predicted she hardly cared. It will be a fantastic final, and infinitely better TV because The Hose™ will be there to make it so, but were it not for the certainty that we’ll see more of Ruby I’d be a lot sadder than I am. A-nyway.

1. (Last Week: 1) Christobelle

She had the worst photo of a very strong week of images. Atip, who I thought was just ridiculous last week, redeemed himself with the cyborg-warrior-princess feel in the ring, and Christobelle’s Mad Max post-apocalyptic outfit was the best of the bunch. Unfortunately, perhaps distracted by her looming Nivea feature (what an amazing prize! A no-pay shoot in a old lady magazine! Lucky!), she never got her head into the shoot, was limp and posed where the other girls leapt (sometimes too ferociously – I’m looking at you Hosanna/Laura) into the fight with real abandon. But there was a reason she won the Nivea challenge, and that was because she was the only remotely decent performer in that segment, which saw Ruby babble cutely but nonsensically when she should’ve just destroyed it. So she gets a pass, and a first ranking here, more through the other girl’s abdication than through any dominating performance of her own. She was as average as everyone else with Wendyl Nissen’s risible ‘media training’ segment, but I felt that was as much due to Nissen’s bizarre showboating as anything else. Maybe that journalist-as-starmaker attitude flew in the ’80s when there were like two magazines and a radio station in the whole country, but just check the scramble for models across any different platform you care to pick right now… The game’s changed, lady, and you’re teaching them the old rules. With Ruby’s departure Christobelle becomes both the new people’s champ and the overwhelming bookie’s fave for the title, and as the Hastings’ gem (see what I did there? RUBBISH) was the most similar to her strength-wise, she should romp home in the final.

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New Zealand's Next Top Model Power Rankings 7


After the tumescent glory of the American excursion, it was inevitable that the return home would be a little limp. Sans the enervating foulness of Teryl-Leigh’s temperament, the show just drifted along, as if we were all in mourning for her cantankerous venom and general sense of bitter, brawling life. Without her it was just a bunch of schoolgirls running around and making little half-hearted jabs behind one another’s backs. Where was the bald-faced meanness? The low-voiced taunting? Where was the hate, dammit!

It was gone, and we were all a little flat as a result, but it was also in a sly way the most shocking episode thus far. What did we learn, children? Nikki Phillips told us what a Go See was, but to paraphrase Chelsea Handler, you don’t need an explanation when the definition’s in the name. But there was a further revelation, and to keep with the paraphrasing, should someone nuke us all, you can add Hosanna’s name to the list of those who’d survive a nuclear apocalypse, alongside cockroaches and Shivnarine Chanderpaul. The girl just stares blankly into certain doom every week and feeds off of its malevolent advances. She won this week. WON! I don’t know about you, but the other girls need to start getting properly scared of her about now, Ruby in particular.

1. (LW: 1) Christobelle

By the skin of her pretty, perfect Dio teeth goes she. After wearing the wrong gruts and taking a tumble in front of the sprawling menopausal matriarch of the New Zealand fashion scene, Trelise Cooper, C-Belle could easily have fallen apart. Instead, like Chumbawamba implored all those summers ago, she got back up again, and wowed Huffer with her legs and charm. The girl remains the obvious choice for the overall win, one who could easily work in the industry (the first champ can’t be a sentimental fave figurehead, which is why, much as I love her, Rubes is making up the numbers) with her slender frame and slightly sleepy eyes (you need a hook like that these days). But the chatter about the make-up she plasters on is rising, when she needs everyone to be focusing on her pins, which is a worry, albeit possibly a contrived one. Regardless, she needs to bring her A game every week from now on, even when on a motherf***in’ boat. Because sharks are circling, kiddo, and the biggest of the lot is now directly underneath her. Continue reading


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