Paying attention could feel exhausting in 2018, a year that saw political dysfunction, heartbreaking violence, and the world continue to burn. But, as the list of New York’s most-read stories from the past 12 months illustrates, people still found time for diversions. They were provided by oddball TV shows, even stranger real-life characters, and unfiltered stars. The most popular stories of the past year find our readers digging into the consequential and getting distracted by the ephemeral, all made possible by the breadth of coverage and excessive readability of Intelligencer, the Cut, Vulture, Grub Street, and the Strategist. These are also the kinds of stories that you get unlimited access to as a digital subscriber of New York.