I have to admit, when these photos of Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik popped up on US Weekly, I squealed. Come on, you did too. A little?
First off, just their faces that close together – look at them! They are just both really, really beautiful. So there’s that.
We need this right now. We’ve lost Justin and Selena and yes it’s was fun to watch Blake and Gwen flirt for a minute, but this could be the kind of wild, all-consuming, totally unhealthy love that can only come from being young and famous and really, really beautiful. A relationship like this could give us gossip nostalgia in 15 years. Britney and Justin. Winona and Johnny. Kate and Johnny.
Are you yelling at me right now because you think I’m overstating it? The ingredients are there: a supermodel with deep Hollywood connections and a penchant for dating musicians falls in love with a boy bander-turned-solo artist with a chip on his sensitive shoulder. I’m writing fan fiction and I’ve seen one picture. This is fun.
There’s a collision of energy here. Zayn is gearing up for a solo release in 2016; he just did a really great interview with The Fader, and it’s worth a read. The article compared him to Justin Timberlake but to me, he seems more like Miley Cyrus. Zayn says he doesn’t care if people like him or listen to his music. Justin cares, and there’s nothing wrong with that. He’s a pop artist, isn’t that kind of the point? I’m not going to shit on JT for caring.
But Zayn wants to release his “I’m doing me” album, like Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz. Before Dead Petz, though, there was Bangerz, a creative and commercial hit. The success of Bangerz is how Miley earned the freedom to release her freaky passion project for free. We’ve watched her creative growth, we’ve had time to acclimate to it. Bangerz was the easy-to-digest version of Miley. Imagine if she went from Hannah Montana to Dead Petz? It would have been a complete disaster.
Zayn’s album, recorded in the woods and in hotel rooms and other not-traditional places, is slated for early 2016. And yes, of course he says he doesn’t care about the sales, or if anyone listens, or if anyone likes it. But is “not caring” the same as really not caring?
Zayn’s formative years were spent with 1D, and that kind of fame changes a person on a molecular level. When he left the band, he said wanted peace and quiet and then went straight to work on new music. He said he wanted out of the spotlight and went to fashion shows and beefed with his former band mates on Twitter.
And let’s not forget Perrie Edwards. Within months of leaving 1D, he calls off his engagement (although not, apparently, by text.). During his boyband days he was painted as the sensitive one, the guy who wanted to settle down and would never break your heart. And he ended up being the biggest heartbreaker of them all.
Let’s look at the photos with Gigi – does Zayn look like he’s hating the swarm of paparazzi? Does he look shy? Does it look like his sensitive soul is being trampled by fame? He’s in LA, on the night of the AMAs, picking up his famous date outside a popular nightclub. He looks fine. Better than fine.
And what about Gigi? What does she have to gain? She’s already a hugely successful model, she walks in all the best shows, and she has a squad. But he’s gorgeous and probably a high maintenance handful and why not? She’s the perfect age for it. Better Zayn than a dad bod. When the photos were released, #Gigi started trending on Twitter.
Oh oh oh and there’s also a smutty angle, of course. Taylor, Gigi’s very good friend, can collect Zayn. Of course he’d have to make up with her boyfriend Calvin Harris – they had a Twitter feud. Nothing Taylor can’t smooth over with an intimate dinner carefully documented on Instagram.
These kids use social media like mean notes passed in class – imagine how smug that caption would be. Think Harry Styles won’t notice? Well an enterprising young person took this screen shot of Harry and Gigi saying hello at the AMAs two days ago, the same night she was spotted with Zayn. Harry’s eyeroll!!!!!!!!
Are you with me? How can we not be thrilled and excited by the possibilities and pettiness of youth?