‘The show needed to come back’: how Drake rescued the druglords of Top Boy

It was Britains answer to The Wire. But the gang drama was dead until the rapper stepped in and pitched it to Netflix. Its stars and writer talk grime, gentrification and Boris Johnsons Britain I told them I was on my way out to meet some singer called Drake, says writer Drake was a fan of Top Boy, Bennetts Channel 4 drama about the lives of drug dealers and residents on a fictional Hackney estate called Summerhouse. He had been recommended it while on tour and loved it so much, he began posting stills from the show on Instagram with clumsy attempts at London slang (real bod man). When he found out it had been cancelled, he decided to bring …

I was a drug addict for nearly 20 years. There was nothing dignified or cool about it | Chris Fleming

I spent half my waking hours acquiring and using drugs and the other half trying to hide that fact Ive been an academic in the humanities now for almost 20 years, and so telling people that youre writing a book called On Drugs invites an inevitable series of nods, smirks and winks of jokes about doing empirical research in the area, of possibilities for applying for grants and getting funding. (While an addict, I would have certainly appreciated more funding.) One colleague, on hearing I was writing this book, joked that I should make up something juicy, like that I smoked crack, almost died and went through some fancy rehab. The fact, though I didnt say as much, was that …

I Think I Hated This Tech Conference on Psychedelics

I stood in a silent auditorium and stared obediently into the eyes of a stranger. His eyes were brown. His nametag said Mark. He had a soul patch so tiny I wondered if he had to tweeze it into shape. Around me, several hundred other people were similarly engrossed in this “experiment in connection.” I snuck a glance to my right, where a woman was beaming at her partner. Another pair were clasping each other’s shoulders like slow-dancing eighth graders, one of them weeping. I looked back at Mark. It was like making eye contact with a harbor seal. “That was 30 seconds,” said the man with the microphone. “Ten minutes to go.” I was at Awakened Futures, a conference …