If you love KimYe, of COURSE this cover matters. Kimmy finally got her Vogue cover! Take that, you classist, elitist Anna Wintour!
But this cover deserves more scrutiny.
I’ve written before on this blog about how Kim has been constructed in public discourse as a sex worker, and how her and Kanye’s relationship has been implicitly characterized as deviant, or dismissed as a publicity sham.
Thus it’s fascinating–and meaningful–that this cover story is all about Kim, Kanye and North: by posing Kim in white dresses and Kanye in suits, and including their child in the images, the story casts their deviance as redeemed by marriage and family.
In particular, take a gander at Kim’s makeup on the cover. The dark eyes and nude lip connote a rawness. That is not fresh-faced virgin bride makeup. That is, I have a dark history but now I’m married. Neither she nor Kanye are smiling. The picture is somber. Kim looks out at the viewer, daring us to judge her. Her makeup tells us she knows what we think, and she knows well enough to be ashamed.
Especially in the context of Kim’s first Vogue cover, this image and the wedding-centric photo spread inside sends the message that Kimmy–a huge celebrity and fashion icon in her own right–is only worthy of public honor now that she is married to the father of her child, and that it’s her marriage and redemption, and not Kim herself, that we’re celebrating.