I wonder how far ahead these magazines really plan their cover. Because back in June, after tour cancellations and racist tweets and other controversies, people were writing stories about whether Iggy Azalea’s improbable high-speed career was already kaput; Vulture even went so far as to suggest she needs to try and save it, and fast. She has virtually disappeared from sight, and although she claims she’s working on a 2016 album, I’ll be curious to see if she makes an appearance at the VMAs or stays underground. And I’m wondering if the team at Seventeen has been gnawing on its nails for the past three months, trying to figure out how to get through September without anyone being enraged at them. At best, this exposes that they plan far enough ahead to risk dating themselves.

Amusingly, she doesn’t even really look like herself anymore (she addresses having had plastic surgery in the article), which I guess is one way to try and hide. This cover is very… even back when it was shot, it might’ve been a too-desperate attempt to preppy her up for its audience, because nothing about this seems to dovetail with anything Iggy has ever worn, or any vibe she has ever presented. I guess for someone who’s had her authenticity questioned ever since she first opened her mouth on a stage, that’s weirdly fitting. The effect, though, is alien. I don’t connect with who or what this is, or what anyone is peddling with it. Then again, seventeen is but a distant blot in my rearview at this point, so maybe it’s a backward compliment.