Miami New Times has never had a year quite like 2013. In January, we dropped a bomb on Major League Baseball when our Biogenesis investigation revealed a massive doping scandal in Coral Gables. In April, Michael Bay released "Pain & Gain," a major production with the Rock and Mark Wahlberg based on a New Times feature story. By the end of the year, features on a killer porn star, the troubled life of a former online cam girl and Thomas Kramer's downfall had riled and entertained the Magic City.
Check out the ten most-read features we wrote this year, and here's hoping 2014 is even wilder.
Writer Michael E. Miller profiles former All Pro wide receiver Chad Johnson as he spends his days visiting orcas at the Seaquarium, hanging with strangers in South Beach and dreaming of an NFL comeback that's probably not in the cards.
Writer Terrence McCoy lifts weights with ex-governor Charlie Crist and tries to get to the bottom of the ex-Republican's sudden switch to Democratic savior.
Could a psychedelic Amazonian drug change the way mental illness is treated? Writers Kyle Swenson and Olivia Levecchia investigate.
Tim Elfrink's follow-up feature to his January Biogenesis investigation revealed the backstory behind how a previously anonymous source leaked the documents that lead to the story -- as well as MLB's alleged malfeasance in trying to get that evidence.
Writer Lera Gavin delves into the crazed final days of SoBe tycoon Thomas Kramer before he leaves everything for Pakistan.
Miller takes readers into the shadowy, sometimes dangerous world of South Florida's "sugar daddy" websites.
John Snavely was Miami's biggest male porn star -- in more ways than one -- until he was arrested for murdering a Washington D.C. millionaire. Miller unspools the unbelievable tale of death and sex.
On the 4chan site, an underage girl named Loli-chan became a pedophile celebrity. Seven years later, writer Allie Conti describe her attempts to build a life out of the ashes of her unhealthy fame.
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In the most-read feature New Times wrote in 2013, Elfrink exposed how Biogenesis owner Tony Bosch sold steroids, HGH and testosterone to a host of MLB stars including Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun. The story sparked a probe that resulted in 14 suspensions by mid-summer, including a record 211 game ban for A-Rod (which the slugger is still appealing).
1) Pain & Gain
As huge an impact as New Times Biogenesis story made, it couldn't compete with a Hollywood wide release like Michael Bay's take on the 1999 tale by Pete Collins of bodybuilders gone bad. The movie grossed $84 million worldwide, and millions of those viewers wanted to read Collins' tropical noir classic for themselves.