Fug File: Fug The Cover
About a year and a half ago, the U.S. version of Elle did a Women in Hollywood issue on which Melissa McCarthy appeared on the cover heavily swaddled in a coat. She looked great, but nonetheless it sparked curiosity about why the plus-size subject was the only one of the four cover ladies laden in heavy layers. (It certainly wasn’t seasonal: Marian Cotillard was in a sports bra.)
We’ve already posted the Rebel Wilson Elle UK newsstand cover; my reaction and some of Fug Nation’s was to wonder if it was a similar crisis of confidence in regular women – specifically, whether such a tight close-up, pretty though it was, bespeaks an ongoing lack of faith in putting a larger lady in all her glory on a newsstand while not also shrouded in a coat. (Elle Australia did the same, sadly without making her look quite so lovely.) So I thought you’d be interested in seeing the subscriber cover that went out with that same issue, in addition to some inside pics.
The fact that it’s a full-body shot in a dress is refreshing — but then again, you could argue that the fact that it was seemed Subscribers Only and not sufficient for a newsstand underscores the negative impression. And it’s hardly an assertive take on her; you can barely see her face. I’m curious to hear your thoughts.
[Photos: Elle UK]
The last time Madonna covered Cosmo, it was for the 25th anniversary issue in May 1990. So however you feel about this cover — and we’ll get into it, believe me, because I don’t like it — I think it’s worth giving her an ovation for being an enduring and powerful female figure for so long that she could be considered iconic on two magazine covers TWENTY FIVE YEARS APART. I mean, even in 1990, she was already well into her career and had several visual incarnations (the “Holiday” Madonna, the “Like A Virgin” and Desperately Seeking Susan era, the “Papa Don’t Preach” Madonna, and then rolling into the brunette “Like A Prayer” days). This woman has endured and thrived, and that’s always worth celebrating.
Shall we eyeball some recent covers out of the UK? Where, for what it’s worth, I LOVE THE MAGAZINES. Half of them give you gifts! Half of them are wee, purse-sized little books of delight! Some of them are REALLY TRASHY (heat)! And then there is my favorite of all the glossy monthlies, Tatler, for which I pay an absurd fee to have delivered to my home and which I HAVE NEVER REGRETTED. They once had a whole sidebar about ridiculous British names that caused me and Heather to worry that The Royal We didn’t have a sufficiently crazily-named character and one of our major players is named after a font. It recently had an article about aristocratic menageries of yore which included a photo of a lemur (!) named Mah-Jongg (!!) on a deck-chair (!!!) OF SOMEONE’S YACHT! IT’S THE BEST.
Join me, won’t you?
I have a lot of thoughts. First of all, her hair looks awesome. Vogue‘s logo might as well not even be there. Who cares about the name of this magazine in the face of Serena’s awesome hair?
Second, I think she just looks great. Really striking and strong and glamorous. Most of all, I’m glad they resisted the impulse to do something gimmicky or silly and just went simple with her — it’s a lovely picture, but it also feels natural, which makes the whole thing seem more modern to me. I also love the article about her relationship with Caroline Wozniacki, because they’re my favorite Athlete Friendship out there, and they’re obviously crazy about each other. (I appreciate how Serena threatened to fly to Monaco and knock Caroline’s door down to help her through her break-up. Serena Williams might be the world’s best Get a Grip Friend.) I don’t think ANY of us predicted this one, but I for once am happy to be proven wrong.