I love the androgynous feel of the styling of this cover — for all the fashion risks Zendaya takes, she doesn’t usually go in this direction, and it’s fun. And feels neat to see her in clothing that leans towards menswear on the cover of what is ostensibly a men’s magazine; that’s both on topic and neatly avoids making her look “sexy” in the stereotypical sense of the word. Both the cover and the inside editorial were styled by her usual stylist, Law Roach, and it’s — as usual when they team up — very smart. I also must confess: I really love this font. Come talk to me, font fans!
The cover profile is by Hunter Harris, and it is quite dense and very good — she’s an excellent writer, and GQ actually almost always has adept celebrity profiles. It helps that Zendaya seems like she’s a thoughtful, straightforward, and highly creative person, and therefore, she’s got interesting and smart things to say. You can read it here, and you should, but this might have been my favorite part:
Few people emerged from the vacuum of 2020—its loneliness, its unpredictability—unscathed. When the pandemic first hit, we all grieved for the busyness of our old lives, the small habits and regularities that felt essential to how we lived. For Zendaya, the moment prompted a lot of soul-searching and attempts to carve out an identity beyond her vocation, and she’s still not entirely sure what she’s discovered. “It was my first time just being like, ‘Okay, who am I without this?’ ” she explains. “Which is a very scary thing to confront and work through, because I don’t really know Zendaya outside of the Zendaya who works. I didn’t realize how much my job and my art were a part of my identity as a human.”
She gets into to this in a lot more detail and it’s really insightful and interesting; she truly is the real deal. The fashion editorial is striking, too. Go spend some time over there.