Wednesday, March 26, 2014

World's Most Talked About Couple

I feel slightly remiss that we here at Schenkerian Gang Signs are just now getting around to discussing the Kimye Vogue cover.  Obviously, a blog that seeks to contemplate all things Kanye needs to address the plethora of commentary surrounding this publication, as well as consider what the hashtag 'World's Most Talked About Couple' hath wrought.  Let's start with the history: Anna Wintour, editor of Vogue, and KK are rumored to have not gotten along very well, so much so that AW totes did not invite KK to the Met Opera Gala, which is literally the worst thing ever if you are a celebrity fashion type (and you don't understand the meaning of the term 'literally').  And KK has long viewed herself as a celebrity fashion type, so that was undoubtedly somewhat insulting to her.  However, she did get to attend last year as Kanye's date, even though the outfit was pilloried by everyone in every media outlet on earth, and possibly even on other planets that have not yet been discovered.

Then the next thing we knew, KK was on the cover of Vogue, like she totally belonged there, with Kanye playing runner up and barely being seen at all.  This is Kanye West we are talking about here, people.  The guy who is not known for playing second fiddle to anyone, ever.  In fact, if Kanye were in a string quartet, it would be a string one-tet, because everyone else could just go home since Kanye would be all you'd want to hear.

I'm not going to lie, I think she looks really pretty here:

I also think that if she didn't look really good on the cover, then Vogue needs to do some hiring/firing ASAP, because come on, people.  This is Vogue.
Fun fact: there are now rumors that Kanye is a vampire (Pro tip, CNN: 'Is Kanye West a vampire' is not 'News of Note').

Then there was the inevitable backlash.  I say 'inevitable' because I feel that almost anything KK does creates backlash.  KK could go pet puppies on the head and I can guarantee that the most 'liked' comments on Yahoo would be something about how she needs to go away and never be in the media again and how she probably exploited those puppies and now plans to do something heinous to them and her name should really be 'Kartrashian.'  In part, this backlash is fair because I think we're all confounded by her still.  It's hard to get your brain around a person whose fame rests on a sex tape, reality show, and being known for some seriously objectionable fashion choices--I mean, I make some seriously objectionable fashion choices, but I don't have her money or stylists or anything like that, so I feel justified in the occasional boo-boo.  However, because her family seems to have something in the ballpark of a gazillion dollars, she can do pretty much whatever she pleases without this backlash affecting her in any significant way.  Heck, she can even have willingly worn this (and walk around with this) and still make the cover of Vogue.

What I find interesting about the Kimye Vogue cover backlash, though, is the hefty weight being given to it.  No one seems to have a quick comment (except on Twitter, which I will cover below).  The gals over at 'Go Fug Yourself' had a seriously lengthy consideration of the Kimye cover, which can be summarized as a criticism of Anna Wintour, and the sense that she has completely sold out.  Cara Kelly, writing for the Washington Post Style Blog, suggests that the problem is KK's achievements, which are sparse.  Historically, the cover of Vogue is not limited to fashion models, but those who are included are either: A) actresses who are kind of like models or B) Women of Distinction and Respect (like Oprah and Hillary Clinton).  So maybe AW has sold out or maybe a Vogue cover is no longer an actual achievement.  What seems clear from these comments is a sense that some kind of sea change has arrived to Vogue, perhaps one that signals its decline--or at least Wintour's decline--and that this could be the End of All Things Fashion as We Know Them.  And perhaps there is some truth to this.  It is hard to view this cover as more than some kind of pandering to someone, whether that is the younger audience that eagerly consumes all things Kardashiana or for some reason, Kanye (Why is Anna Wintour pandering to Kanye though?  Why would she need to?  Can we really live in a world where the editor of Vogue needs to pander to Kanye West?  Because we can't.  We just can't).

There has also been backlash in the form of parodies and witty Tweets about the cover.  Indeed, why is there a hashtag on the cover in the first place?  Likely this is some kind of testament to Kimye, who are new moguls in this new world of social media.  But you can also read this as an attempt to get to the 'kids today' with their 'Twitter' and their 'hashtags' and their '140-character conversations.'  So is this a calculated move by Vogue to attract a younger audience?  Anna Wintour's attempt to win Kanye to her side?  The revelation that Kanye is of the undead?  The only thing that I know for sure is that Nori West peed on Kanye during the photoshoot.

Some Twitter highlights:

There is some history with regard to that last one.

Let me conclude with some words of wisdom from KK herself:

He’s kind of like the strength of our relationship.  When I am stressed out he just wants to alleviate that stress, so even if it’s something that he’s not really into, he’ll figure it out just to help me not be stressed out.

Shakespeare, she is not.


  1. I'm glad Kimye are on the cover. Honestly. The reception of this "shocking" and "dastardly" act has been more fascinating to witness than the couple themselves. As a blog committed to blurring the lines between high culture and pop culture, this magazine cover (and, more importantly, the reception surrounding it) perfectly captures what we do and why we do it. Oh, the hand-wringing! The anxious mewling! It's perfect. Absolutely perfect.

  2. i will continue to hand wring...last days of empire, I tell ya!