This particular issue of Lucky has been promoted as addressing Whatever The Hell Happened in the Elevator With Solange and Jay-Z, but basically what she says is, “I already said what I wanted to say in the statement we made about this earlier, but I get why you’re asking.” Which, honestly, is what I would have said, too. I would not want to re-open that whole thing by announcing that actually she and Jay just have a long-term standing slap-bet, or that they are in a feud stretching through space and time dating back to an ancient Viking curse or whatever the unknowable truth may be. But the reason that I like this cover — and I do — is that she looks VERY Solange. She’s wearing deeply pleated pants and a sweatshirt with a flipbook stapled to it, and she still looks cool. It’s like a miracle, and I suspect it cannot be taught. Also: there’s coffee. I’ll do anything for a cup of coffee.
Fug File: Lucky
This cannot have gone according to plan.
I am sure the plan was, “Let’s put Kerry Washington on the cover because America is obsessed with her right now,” and not, “Let’s put Kerry Washington on the cover and make her look like she’s suffering through menstrual cramps and an extreme cobweb attack while someone blows a wind cannon at her that’s making it impossible for her to open her eyes.” Like, I am fairly sure that even on the set, while making this pose, Kerry Washington looked more like Kerry Washington than she does right here on the cover. That right there is crazyface. Olivia Pope would take one look at this cover and then accept Kerry Washington as a client, and set about ruining the lives of the slanderous hobos who made this happen. Also, does ANYTHING about this make you feel festive? Do you at ALL want to dig into holiday shopping, drink a hot cocoa spiked with something devilish, scream the incomparably catchy and badmazing “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in your car while imitating all the overwrought performances of those ill-conceived lyrics (I don’t know if “the only water flowing is A BITTER STING OF TEARS” or “the Christmas bells that ring there are the CLANGING CHIMES OF DOOM” is my favorite, but let me tell you, by the time Bono comes in all lecturey with “TONIGHT THANK GOD IT’S THEM INSTEAD OF YOU,” I am in FULL performance mode)? Does it make you want to make stuffing and a turkey and eat pie, and watch football and wear cute coats and things? No. It MIGHT make you want to wear a scarf, but only because you are pretty sure you would wear it better than she has been told to wear this one. That is a perfunctory scarf. That scarf says, “Shit, we totally dressed her for spring — quick, throw a scarf on her neck. INSTANT WINTER.”
And for what it’s worth, the parenthetical on the cover line is annoying me, too. “Perfect, Glowy Skin” did not need “all winter long” to be in parenthesis. It reads like a disclaimer: “Yeah, we can’t actually promise you good skin beyond, say, February, but listen, we’re here for you until then.”
In sum: Unlawful Crazyface mixed with Unseasonal Tomfoolery plus Unnecessary Parentheses = I am wearing three pairs of crankypants.
On Twitter, one of you noted that Blake here looks like she’s been morphed with Elaine Irwin, and while that’s not necessarily a bad thing, it is also bang on:
She is lovely, but her facial expression cracks me up. Between the open mouth and the clutched coat, there’s something very “I’m cold, I’M SO VERY COLD” about it. And parenthetically: I find it interesting that Lucky has not picked a photo where Blake is smiling. For a couple of reasons: (1) Lucky — in name alone! — implies a sunny, cheerful cover girl, and I feel like traditionally their cover model is smiling. (2) Blake Lively — also in name alone! — seems like a sunny, cheerful person, so this seems slightly off brand for both of them. And, finally, (3) I don’t have a number three, it just seemed wrong to have a list of two. In short, I actually don’t hate this – it just doesn’t seem like it’s necessarily in keeping with the mag’s brand, and I don’t know if I would pick it up and buy it based on this cover. (Although I would certainly pick it up, read the “I don’t have a stylist!” headline, say, “no kidding!” aloud to the magazine, and then put it back and wander off to find the Cheetos.). It feels like, ever since the departure of Kim France, the Powers That Be are trying to turn Lucky into Glamour, despite them already having a Glamour in, you know, GLAMOUR. It seems to me that if they were going to go anywhere new with it, they should have tried to make it their own version of InStyle. Which, after several years away from, I have resubscribed to. InStyle, I could only resist your sunless tanning tips for so long!
How does it grab you?
Somebody at Lucky really loves Christina Hendricks, because this is the second time they’ve done a positively stunning cover with her.
The cover lines are totally bland and personality-free, and the font looks like a default one that the computer chose, like somebody forgot to use their style sheets. But Christina looks awesome. Her hair is perfection. The dress fits her to a tee. If Photoshop has been employed, and I’m sure it has because that’s how this stuff works, I think it’s been sparing and subtle. Everything looks beautifully wrangled, not computer-manipulated. I hope she wore this outfit home and then ordered three more as backups.
Let me guess: HOW GAINING WEIGHT MADE HER HAPPIER does not include the actual REASON Jessica Simpson has gained a ton of weight lately, namely, that she is GESTATING ANOTHER HUMAN BEING. Which surely has made her happier, and is a very good reason to BE happy, but was certainly totally unmentioned in this interview. That always seems so very awkward for a magazine — and maybe, therefore, it’s a good rule of thumb to not run a cover line like, “how gaining weight made her happier” when you know that, based on photos and rumors from at least the last several months, THE HER in question might be cooking a bun in ye old oven. At least so as to avoid people rolling their eyes when they see the cover line.
THAT BEING SAID: I actually think J. Simp looks really pretty here. Yes, her hair — to filch a line from Heather — looks as though it’s been dropped on her head from above. That is one big-ass wig. But her makeup is pretty and natural and she looks NORMAL, rather than like a girl with a stuffed-up nose who just got hit on the back of the head with a brick, which is how she often looks in photos. With that, I can find no fault.
And THIS, in case you’re wondering, is why I’m letting my Lucky subscription lapse.
Not only because Lucky is doing a whole article about how the Kardashians are awesome — which last time I checked, has NOTHING TO DO WITH SHOPPING (other than the fact that they let people film them doing that) — and because they decided to have collectible Kardashion covers, which is ridiculous, but also because the fact that Lucky NEVER used to do celebrity profiles was the whole reason Lucky was Lucky and not, like, Glamour. And, for what it’s worth, I actually think Glamour is REALLY GOOD lately. Every time it shows up at my door, I’m all, “I am too old to be reading Glamour. Why do I still get this?” and then I proceed to totally enjoy it and read the whole thing, like, standing up in my entry-way. But there IS a Glamour and Glamour is good and LUCKY ISN’T GLAMOUR except apparently now it is. It’s turned itself into a half-assed Glamour without the recipes for magical chicken, but with Kardashians dressed like a mermaids gone business casual and shilling their Sears line. That is not a good trade, you guys! LOOK AT YOUR CHOICES.