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Who Is This “Rock Star” They’re Talking About?

Who Is This “Rock Star” They’re Talking About? (photo)

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While reading this week’s Sports Illustrated, an article’s (“It’s Like You Never Left, Kid”) sub-headline caught my attention:

Grown Men reduced to tears, a rock star downloading 14-year-old playoff footage on his iPhone, an entire city falling in love all over again: Ken Griffey Jr. is back in Seattle, and, damn, it feels good

The article was about baseball player, Ken Griffey Jr., returning to the Seattle Mariners–the team he broke into the big leagues with, and one that he hasn’t played on in 10 years. The story explains how Griffey’s return to Seattle has the city reminiscing of better days. In 1992–Griffey’s rookie season–Seattle not only had a young baseball phenom on their hands, but their basketball team was doing well, Microsoft was ready to unleash Internet Explorer, and a few hometown bands were making their mark on the music world.

Before I dived into the article, I thought, Who is this rock star they’re talking about? Most Seattle bands from the early ’90s didn’t seem too into sports, so I wrote them off immediately. The word “rock star” also means something entirely different today than it did 10 years ago (and 10 years before that it meant something different as well). Was Sports Illustrated talking rock star like Bon Jovi? Or rock star like Chad Kroeger of Nickleback?

Two pages into the article, I found out:

The rock star in question was Ben Gibbard of Death Cab For Cutie. While on tour in Minneapolis–coincidentally where the Mariners were playing the Twins on Opening Day–Gibbard made it a point to watch Griffey’s first at bat of the season on his laptop, telling Sports Illustrated, “I should be at the game.” Griffey belted a home run during the contest, leaving Gibbard craving for more, so the next morning he cued up a vintage ’95 highlight on his iPhone, and watched Griffey sprint home in extra innings, eliminating the New York Yankees from the playoffs.

Ben Gibbard? Rock star? I’ll buy it (I’ll take that over a Chad Kroeger rock star reference any day), but if you told me 10 years ago (let alone 10 days ago) that Sports Illustrated would name drop Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard, prefacing him with the word rock star, I wouldn’t have believed it.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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