What Happens Next for Kendrick Lamar and Drake? Let’s Discuss.

It’s gotten ugly between Kendrick Lamar and Drake.

Over the weekend, the two generation-defining rappers turned a decade of competitive tension into increasingly personal attacks delivered on a barrage of diss tracks filled with taunts, insults, accusations of abuse, alleged inside information and threats.

With Lamar’s songs, including “Euphoria” and “Not Like Us,” dominating the online conversation and streaming charts, the battle seemed to cool on Sunday evening, after a resigned-sounding second response this weekend from Drake, who denied some of the most serious claims against him, including pedophilia, even as he doubled down on his allegations against Lamar. Then, on Tuesday, a security guard was shot and hospitalized in serious condition outside Drake’s Toronto home; the authorities said they did not yet have a motive and the investigation was ongoing.

As the musical volleys paused, at least for now, the New York Times pop music critic Jon Caramanica and the Times music reporter Joe Coscarelli surveyed the songs, the strategy, the reputational wreckage and where each rapper stands now for an episode of the video podcast Popcast (Deluxe). These are edited excerpts from the conversation.

JOE COSCARELLI I don’t think we need to jump in right away to definitively say who we think won this beef, because the fight seems to have been decided by popular vote. Nobody’s really calling this for Drake, right?

JON CARAMANICA I think even Drake is not calling this for Drake, because of the tone of what he put out last, “The Heart Part 6.” In the big picture, though, everyone won and nobody won. Thinking about fandom in the stan era, you’re either on one side or the other. But what I’ve realized in the wake of these songs is that Drake fandom comes with different levels of fickleness. His fans are willing to entertain, “Maybe he’s not the person that I thought he was.” Whereas most Kendrick fans are not willing to entertain that idea, despite Drake’s allegations in “Family Matters” that Kendrick at some point hired a crisis management team to cover up that he abused his fiancée, which are quite serious.

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