(Dylan Martinez / Reuters)

“Concerts could be Rihanna’s finest medium. She is gorgeous on video; fascinating, if seemingly troubled, on Instagram and Twitter; undeniable on the radio and the dance floor. But onstage she is mesmerizing in different ways. The crowd was so invested in winning the approval of the beautiful, aloof woman in front of them that there was no space to think about tabloid headlines bearing her name. . . “

— If you read only one essay this month attempting to dissect the appeal of that pop-culture sphinx known as Rihanna, make this one by Sarah Godfrey, which manages to cram a lot of profound thoughts into a mere concert review — and a concert that was only half an hour late and not delayed by mysterious illness, even. Read more: At Verizon Center, Rihanna is bored and beautiful, 4/30/13

Looking for today’s Reliable Source? Start here: How much did the McDonnell wedding cost, after all?