Front of Book: Vanity Fair, February 2017


This week, I chose to read the February edition of Vanity Fair, which features coverboy Chris Pratt and his ascension to Hollywood stardom. Diving into the issue, the first content that appears (after ads) is the table of contents. Something interesting to note is that it is not arranged in chronological order. The features, which are mainly located in the middle-back of the magazine, are the first that are called out, followed by “Vanities,” “Fanfair & Fairground,” “Columns,” and “Et Cetera,” with pieces from throughout the magazine scattered into these different categories.

Next is the Editor’s Letter, entitled “Welcome to Trumpistan,” in which EIC Graydon Carter gives his evaluation of the new presidential administration (which is relevant giving the timing of the issue, post-inauguration). A few ads and a full two-page masthead follow, and then come the letters to the editor, under the title “One Nation.” In keeping with the theme of Carter’s address, the collection of letters is subtitled “Aaron Sorkin’s letters to his ex-wife and daughter get a wider audience; readers abroad send their sympathy; hope springs eternal.”

“Vanities” is the next section, which starts with a short feature of Matilda Lutz (who is apparently an actress/model), with a full-page photo of her with some fun facts below. The section continues with another one-page feature on Ruth Chapman called “My Stuff,” showcasing her taste in beauty products, clothing, décor, etc. Lastly is a page describing various new beauty products, perfumes, and their designers; all of the above fit well with Vanity Fair’s platform as a magazine that is both newsy and stylish.

A few new bands and book recommendations are featured in “Fanfair,” but probably my favorite piece is “Another Brief (One Hopes) Shining (Perhaps) Moment?” which compares the Kennedy family to the Trumps, (sarcastically) questioning whether it might be possible for the new First Family to reach the same level of glamour and elegance. (It’s juxtaposed with a few Donald-inspired pickup lines at the bottom of the page.)

Lastly is a page of “Agenda,” which discusses a summit that Vanity Fair hosted back in October, followed by “Fairground,” which is a collage of pictures from LACMA’s Art + Film Gala held more recently.

Overall, this issue’s FOB pieces were a combination of newsy, inauguration-related articles with entertainment, arts and style mixed in alongside, which was very relevant for the timing of the issue but still in keeping with Vanity Fair’s general platform.


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