Friday, January 31, 2014

Wiley to Women's Magazines: Thou Shalt Not Commit Cover Lines

The hilarious Non Sequitur comic strip, drawn by Wiley Miller and syndicated to 700 newspapers, offers brilliant commentary on the issues of the day, mixing witty observations about human nature and contemporary issues.  A favorite periodic feature of the strip is "Life Review in Session," in which a St. Peter-type character sits in front of a huge computer as heaven's inhabitants recount the follies of their earthly life.

 A strip published in newspapers this week tweaked women's magazines for their ubiquitous, and often ridiculous, cover line teasers.

NON SEQUITUR © Wiley Ink, Inc..  Dist. By UNIVERSAL UCLICK.  Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.
That had to sting.  But the strip makes a point that the cover content of women's magazines, carried over to their web sites as well, reminds women that no matter how good they have it, there's always something about them and their lives that needs fixing.  For example:

From Seventeen:

 4 Leg Moves to Help You Tone Up Like Olympic Skater Gracie Gold

From Self:

 9 Moves to a Tighter Butt

 Slim Down in 14 Days

 Heat Up Cold Winter Nights With These 25 Date Ideas

From Glamour:

5 Low Carb Sandwiches that Still Taste Good

100 Amazing Outfits for Every Day

And from Cosmo:

8 Gorgeous Erotic Lesbian Line Drawings You'll Want to Print Out and Color Immediately

19 Times Chrissy Teigen Nailed Her Look

With all that listmaking, tip following, and idea implementing a reader would have to do, there'd be no time to do much else with her life, and no guarantee that the results would be what she hopes for.  With this tip mania, the magazines continue to promote an endless cycle of self-improvement, with a message that is subtly negative and potentially toxic to the self-esteem of women and girls who read them.

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