LeBron/Vogue controversy: The ‘Ape’ issue just won’t go away

Photo: Qweerty.com

The first time I laid eyes on the Vogue cover featuring NBA wunderkinder LeBron James and model Gisele Bundchen, I said to myself, King Kong and Fay Wray.

The cover has become one of the most controversial in Vogue history with everyone from comedians to supermarket stock boys weighing in on the racist imagery the cover projects.

Did famed photographer Annie Liebowitz (who shot the cover) and editor Anna Wintour really mean to stir up controversy with this cover?

Of course they did.

Anyone who suggests otherwise is not being honest with themselves says Cord Jefferson, of Queerty.com.

The Vogue cover is inexcusable for this reason: Even if the photo was not intentionally alluding to the ape imagery of yesteryear, Annie Leibovitz and Anna Wintour, “experts” on imagery that they are, should have been able to look at that photograph and realize what sorts of feelings it would evoke in the public. At worst, the picture’s racist, at best, it’s evidence of glaring ineptitude.

I totally agree. Do you think Vogue magazine – the purveyors of mainstream fashion imagery – could have found something a little less menacing to dress LeBron in than all black? Or would dressing LeBron in all white be a little too much like all right?

LeBron doesn’t see a problem with the cover. But then again, he’s not considered the brightest bulb in the NBA anyway. LeBron’s just happy to be the first black man to bounce a basketball on the cover of Vogue magazine while holding a sexy white woman. Can you blame him?



 


26 Responses to “LeBron/Vogue controversy: The ‘Ape’ issue just won’t go away”

  1. 1
    milly says:

    I dont see a problem with it if he doesnt, after all he did agree to it and took the funds for the cover.

  2. 2
    Maxdan says:

    This dumb. I saw it as kinda like “Beauty and the Beast”. He kills men on the b-ball court and she is a modeling beauty. Everyone that walks around trying to be hyper sensitive needs to get a life. There are bigger issues in the world than the cover of a fashion mag. So if all parties agreed and it was probably edited and seen by tons of different eyes….these folks knew exactly what was being released. We may never understand the concept….

    OH WELL!!!!

  3. 3
    MZN says:

    I’m with you Sandra. There is a definite problem with this cover. The media is constantly pushing BM and WW together… it is so sickening. Then they always make it a point to make the BM coon out all over the WW to keep us under that spell. That’s another reason why BM and BW are at odds with each other.

  4. 4
    kenyanhottie says:

    Next…. Surely there are bigger issues in the world than what appears on a magazine cover? Zimbabwe’s political situation for one, the many wars going on…. I don’t know…I give up!

  5. 5
    free says:

    d*mn, you can’t ignore the similarities. i would have to say it’s intentional but i don’t think annie (who usually does GREAT work but this is NOT her best effort) or anna (who would love the controversy) did it to be mean, it’s just to get attention and that’s exactly what happened. i mean, what in white people news is interesting these days???

    lebron. he’s a pawn for the white man off the court and on the court, what difference does it make to him?

  6. 6
    2thick4u says:

    If Jesse and Al ain’t causing a stir…it must not be important!!!

    Just playing…they should have put the cover on the inside and showed LeBron’s sexy side.

  7. 7
    Smokie says:

    I didn’t think the cover was a problem until right now. To me, it was just a basketball player and a model. BUT, when compared to the King Kong image and when you take into account the famed photographers, I can see that the intent was to mimic King Kong and the damsel in distress. If not, this is a huge coincidence.

  8. 8
    Krysi - yes the same one says:

    I must admit, I didn’t see the big deal at first. Just like someone said before I thought is was similar to Beauty and the Beast. The idea was hard bodies right? Anyway, not that I’ve seen the throwback with King Kong and the white woman I can see that it was something totally over my head, and obviously Lebron’s too! I just wish white people would give this sneaky racist sh*t a rest, I’m tired of trying to point every little thing out, why don’t we just do the same thing to them, hell we have our own d*mn magazines to fight with. The hell with white people, nappy headed hoes, lynching tiger woods, and all that other undercutting sidewayz crap. Lets just get back at the bastards and call it even.

  9. 9
    HunE916 says:

    I think this is just one of those things that folks shouldn’t take too seriously. Black folks have a tendency to turn EVEARYTHAINAG into a race issue!

    Lebron is a grown ass man, and if he was fine with the cover, so be it.

  10. 10
    brwnsugga4you says:

    its really not that serious.

  11. 11

    there really are more important things to care about in the world 2day. so what if some of the world is racist or doensn’t like blacks! now what?! sulk and cry and be mad and make EVERYTHING a black and white issue? no. it won’t change a thing. you must get into people’s hearts to change their minds. take care of you and your planet the best you can…skip the hatred. but as far as this cover…maybe it had the whole king kong thing in mind and maybe not. i personally don’t think gisele is that hot anyway so NEXT!
    a bigger issues is blacks hating blacks…why won’t whites do it if we do all day long??

  12. 12
    Mia says:

    It is what you make of it……IMO, some people just look for stuff to complain about. Not everything is “the race issue” that some people want to make it out to be.

  13. 13

    I think the cover is just ugly, plain and simple. In fact that’s what makes me think maybe there is something more to it.

    For a fasion magazine like Vogue to have this stupid looking cover….something must be up.

    Now if this were King or Jet….maybe.

  14. 14
    kamini says:

    Damn, they talked about this last week on v-103. And I thought it was kinda silly, but now that I see the King Kong picture and if he wasn’t in the same pose as King Kong maybe I wouldn’t have a problem. His damn mouth is wide open…why? Dribbling a ball and hold on to a white chick in a frock. WOW…

  15. 15
    wiggy2272003 says:

    the picture is actually not king kong. It is a World War 1 army enlistment poster that came out several years before the original king kong movie. The beast is representing the nazi german soldiers.

  16. 16
    Tmekio says:

    brwnsugga4you Says:

    its really not that serious.
    ***********************************************************I’m totally with you on this…….NEXT!..

  17. 17
    Smokie says:

    We can’t comment on that Gyant post, and I don’t like that. I REALLY want to comment about his nostrils.

  18. 18
    wiggy2272003 says:

    @ Smokie

    Girl I just laughed out loud

  19. 19
    Mia says:

    @ Smokie ~ Me too! He knocks Mario out of the running for the name “Nostrils”.

  20. 20
    Sharonda says:

    I don’t see the big uproar still.He looks like he just dunked the ball or something.Nothing wrong with it.I’m very in touch in racism, but this has nothing to do with it.

  21. 21

    damn black people complain about everything.

  22. 22

    Black people complain about everything.

  23. 23
    Bird says:

    Smokie Says:

    We can’t comment on that Gyant post, and I don’t like that. I REALLY want to comment about his nostrils.
    **********************************************************

    hehehe. When Gyant got caught in that bold face lie one of the S O H H commenters called him a fruit bat. If you look up the tube nose fruit bat specifically I promise your laughter will be uncontrolable. hehehe

    Sandra shut him down completely this time. For the first time in the 3 years I have been a S O H H reader both of Gyant’s blogs had the comments disabled after Sandra posted her come back. The readers started ripping him to shreads more than usual of course. That pic of dude sucking up all the air in Atlanta couldn’t have helped matters.

  24. 24
    Fatkat says:

    I’m glad this other pic came to light. Most black people still denied the fact of what the cover of Vogue looked like. I wonder how does Lebron feel about this pic. We know he didn’t do it because he needed the money. He was too young to even know what this pic resembles. They are trying hard to get at Lebron by putting all these white women around him.

  25. 25
    miamore73 says:

    I totally agree with the fact that they were imitating a King Kong Fay Wray image I don’t think I would have seen it as racist if there woudn’t have been so much controversy around it.

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