The July Issues
July’s a tricky month in the world of printed menswear.
Because even though summer only officially started last Friday, we’ve been talking about it since early May—and the last thing on our minds in the sweltering heat we’re all now starting to feel is fall tweeds.
It’s this “trickiness,” among other things, that led the gents at two of our big three men’s rags to the same decision years ago: July wasn’t worth the hassle of its own issue, so they tacked it onto the end of June’s. Which has given us the rare opportunity to look past those dusty old stalwarts to a few of the other menswear mags out there.
So without further ado, we take the pulse of this month in menswear journalism…
GQ: 112 pages
Cover: Drake, looking summery in a shiny silver cowboy shirt. By the way, remember when that guy was on that Canadian TV show, Degrassi? He’s come a long way.
Pictures of an upside-down night-robed Chrissy Teigen within the Table of Contents: 1 (a strong start on the eye candy front).
GQ talks Panama hats. Now you’re speaking our language.
Now in “The Best Surf Shops in America,” local faves Pilgrim Surf + Supply and Saturdays Surf NYC get a nod, proving that New York remains the capital of buying things you can’t really use in New York.
“Summer Fridays Shouldn’t Mean Slummin’ Fridays”? Bad title. Good advice.
On grown men taking shots: “Plenty of moments call for a shot with your pals: Promotions. Wedding receptions. ‘Your STD test results came back negative.’”
The Punch List this month includes nostalgia for the purest forms of Johnny Depp, the question of Roland Emmerich’s distaste for the White House and a skeptical look at celebrity-sponsored cruises. All valid thoughts, we believe.
The baby-naming guide is just too little, too late: Kanye’s new baby girl is still named North.
We are both shocked and impressed with either the speed GQ must have acted to get this Gandolfini piece together, or their accidentally incredible timing. Hat tip, for sure.
Drake shows that he’s a far cry from the vast majority of rappers we’ve come to know, at least sartorially. That is, besides Jay-Z and Kanye, of course.
Eddie Redmayne shows off some fall essentials because, well, who better to model tweed, glen plaid and topcoats than a Brit? The Gucci number on page 61 looks remarkably similar to Roger Sterling’s from his scene at the end of Sunday’s Mad Men finale.
We’re not going to say anything about this Boston Marathon article, except that even the intro gave us the chills.
This “Guide to Throwing a Kick-Ass Party in the Great Outdoors” is fantastic. Especially the, ahem, special lemonade recipe on the last page. (Hint: you’re making herbal-infused vodka.)
TV’s Hannibal, aka Mads Mikkelsen, can look terrifying in anything while reminding us that the brown suit can be scarily dapper.
While a little heartbroken that MC Hammer made the “Worst Rappers of All Time” list, we will concede that Madonna probably deserved her spot.
And we’re not touching this story about Obama’s brother with a 10-foot pole.
But we will say that this Chrissy Teigen spread, alluded to earlier, is making us think some wildly inappropriate thoughts.
Apparently, being a California surfer/pot smuggler in the ’70s required wearing a lot of tiny swim trunks. Though that’s not particularly shocking.
We close out the issue with an unfunny Chris Christie cut-out paper doll. We get it, the guy had weight-loss surgery. No one gives a shit.
Esquire UK: 184 pages
Cover: Russell Brand, another shiny shirt, looking about as manic as usual.
In one of the more insightful Letters from the Editor we’ve read, Alex Bilmes reminds readers that all us men’s lifestyle writer-folk write aspirationally. That is, at the end of the day, we go home from our not-at-all-lavish offices to our very average homes, despite all talk of otherwise. Now you know how the sausage is made.
Letter to the Editor of the Month:
I think my cock tastes funny.
Jeremy Langmead takes us through a very detailed, and very scientific, deduction of when and why we may have made a “plonker purchase,” as he calls it. That is, something that within the next six months will disappear into the recesses of your closet, only to reemerge, cringe-worthily, when you’re emptying the space years later.
They go on to endorse, however, a Samsung voice-activated 3D Smart TV, a Rado Hyperchrome ceramic watch and Vespas. All of which fit in the aforementioned “plonker” category, we’d venture to guess.
Tom Riley, from the Starz series Da Vinci’s Demons, takes a minute to show off some summer “perspiration-proof fabrics,” such as knit cotton, thin suede and the perennial seersucker.
And these next grilled shellfish recipes look damn good. Find the “BBQ Piri Piri Prawns” recipe here.
A roundup of British celebrity cologne choices ends with a nice little underhanded jab at Donald Trump and his uncertain attempt at fragrance. We can dig it.
The EsquireMust-List includes Aziz Ansari, a documentarian who convinces genocide perpetrators to reenact their crimes, ridiculous wigs (mostly from HBO Feature Films), an erotically illustrated version of James Joyce’s Ulysses and a brief history of the Sharpie in popular culture. Also, Kristen Bell in a bikini, measuring the risk of death, weather-dependent musical suggestions and something about soccer we’ll never truly understand because, well, we’re American. Quite the assortment, don’t you think?
That cover story on Russell Brand… favorite anecdote: “[My] hero, the great artist Morrissey, [is] affirming and praising my work. But while he’s saying that, a girl with big tits walks past in the background, and I immediately look at her. It’s not even a decision—it’s more like ‘breathe,’ or ‘kidneys separate urine from water.’ It’s happening on such a deep level, that stuff.” Truth bombs, left and right.
Mad Men’s Alison Brie once again reminds us that Pete Campbell really fucked things up when he had the chance.
We’d read this article about Daft Punk’s new album, but really, what’s another article about Daft Punk? It’s like watching Step Brothers for a second time. You really didn’t miss anything the first time.
Esquire UK apparently still hasn’t done the all-white montage bit this season—actor Luke Evans shows off some of the seasons best cream and eggshell looks.
“136 Ways to Stay Cool This Season”: included are a few summer style icons, suggested bars to have a summer cocktail, clean summer fragrances and, in classic British fashion, a selection of umbrellas. Perfect.
Nylon Guys: 136 pages
Cover: Armie Hammer, looking serious, hands at his crotch. Was “hands at his crotch” an odd choice for a cover pose? Yes.
No Chrissy Teigen here, but we’ll settle for Jessica Szohr, who’s a whole different kind of beautiful.
For the record, Nylon’s Letters to the Editor are on the whole significantly more amusing than those of our other magazine choices, despite the previous example from Esquire. For example, Jeff from San Diego notes: “Shout-out to Tony Hawk for being young Bill Gates’s doppelganger.” Let’s assess that, shall we?
Jessica Szohr plays a stripper-cum-dance-instructor in The Internship. Truth is, despite being the first reunion of Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn post–Wedding Crashers, Jessica might be the reason we actually go see the film.
The boys from Catfish discuss the pros and cons of the Internet on relationships in the digital age. Notably, one of them does this in an ascot. (Hence, we take his advice at a higher value.)
Seth Rogen’s writing partner, Evan Goldberg, watches a video of someone taking a shot of whiskey that’s had a human toe marinating in it, and talks about his upcoming 2014 film, Townies.
Finally, some style: Christopher Raeburn, artistic director of Victorinox, talks about his time with the company and lists his style essentials, which include a bespoke Condor bike. Everyone’s got their own version of a sweet ride.
Lacoste sold a polo shirt every two seconds in 2011. That’s 15,724,800 polo shirts over the course of the year. So we probably won’t be calling the gator an endangered emblem.
Michael Jordan’s Flight Sport also gets a shout-out. We’d argue that our deductions on the stuff were way more spot-on.
This bit on the Mercedes Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive, with batwing doors and gorgeous lines, makes us consider electric for our next sports car, if only for a second.
“Taste” Section Lightning Round. Our picks from their picks, by brand:
—Tanks: Billionaire Boys Club
—Shorts: Band of Outsiders
—Flip-Flops: Billy Reid
—Towels: Boss Home
—Swim Trunks: Hartford
—Dopp Kits: Want les Essentiels de la Vie
—Sandals: none of the above. See here.
—Bucket Hats: Louis Vuitton
—Hawaiian Shirts: Lacoste L!VE
Favorite of their 10 picks for rising stars in the creative realms: Nick Robinson, of The Kings of Summer. He’s got more rabbit-skinning swagger than any other 18-year-old we know.
Armie Hammer, the 6′5″ Winklevoss, talks about filming his own stunts, The Lone Ranger and questionable career decisions like Mirror, Mirror.
This is followed by the broodiest group of male models we’ve ever seen playing arcade games, eating hot dogs and doing other supposed-to-be-fun boardwalk activities.
We might never pronounce Antje Traue’s name correctly, and that’s probably because it has a strange foreign consonant arrangement. Luckily for the Man of Steel bad girl, though, her smolder translates pretty seamlessly.
And Guillermo del Toro finishes us off with speaking of his father’s kidnapping (which was mutilation-free, thankfully). Couldn’t we have picked a lighter topic to exit on, guys? Come on.
- — Stephen Praetorius