Bodies, bikinis and bronzer, ‘SI: Swimsuit 2011’

Ah yes, it’s that time of year again. The snow is melting, Cupid’s love is still floating in the air, and over 100 stunningly attractive, young women have had their scantily clad bodies photographed, published and distributed around the nation.

In case you have been hiding under a rock, the publication I am referring to is the famous, or should I say notorious, Sports Illustrated: 2011 Swimsuit Issue. As shocking as this may be to readers, before today, I have never owned or read a copy of the Swimsuit Issue. This being said, I believe that I can provide a completely unbiased review of what this year’s issue brings to the table.

If anyone (with the exception of the male demographic above the age of 13) were to quickly pass her eyes over the magazine in a rack at any store, she would immediately disregard the publication as pornography and move on. I believe this is due to the fact that this year’s cover girl, Irina Shayk, takes up about 65 percent of the cover. As in past years, this year’s editors nearly completely cover the famous Sports Illustrated block letter title print with cover girl Shayk’s lustrous face. Without further investigation, you would not be able to tell the 2011 Swimsuit Edition from a Playboy Magazine.

Door locked, Katy Perry blasting, the setting is ripe for my first ever glance at such a publication. As I flip to the first page, I am greeted with a full, pull-out spread of a woman lying down, wearing all leather, advertising a Dodge pickup truck. “Beauty is in the details,” the ad reads. A possible preview of things to come? I believe so. Before I am able to finally see the first official 2011 swimsuit model, Chrissy Teigen, I must navigate my way through seven pages of advertisements. This caught me by surprise. In today’s society, I know never to expect good things in life ad free, but these seven pages began to push my limit.

The wait proved worthwhile, however when Teigen graced the page, accompanied by the heading, “Allow us to rescue you from your endless winter with an image of a beautiful girl on a beach, kissed by a golden sun, inviting you to Swimsuit 2011.” This started to sound more like a party than a magazine to me. Teigen, to the pleasure of many, is sprawled out on a sunny beach “wearing” seashells. Yes, you heard me: seashells. Does this even qualify as a swimsuit? I mean, I am still reading the “Swimsuit” edition right? One would expect that the first model would actually be wearing a swimsuit, however Teigen is covered in seven or eight, shall I say, strategically placed, seashells.

On page 112, there was another woman “clothed” in a natural material; this time it was a leaf. Not a big, solid leaf either. It was a palm tree leaf, which have many slits in them for added skin visibility. Way to keep it classy, SI.

Every other page or so are Teigen lookalikes, most of the time, sporting bikinis. However, harshly interrupting the time the reader gets to spend observing these women are ads, ads and more ads. A quick count and crunch of the numbers proved that this Swimsuit Issue contained as the following: 35 percent were advertisements, 60 percent were beautiful women and a measly 5 percent was actual writing. To be honest, SI may as well modify the name “2011 Swimsuit” to “2011 Advertisements With Swimsuit (and sometimes borderline naked) Models in Them.”

A quick count proved that of those 206 pages, ten of them featured actual articles. Of those ten articles, six were “Behind the Scenes” articles of the various luxurious hotels at locations of the models’ photo shoots.  Two of those articles were interviews with the models, and two were quick little feature articles on the models.  As relevant as these articles were to the theme of the issue, not a single one was able to captivate my full attention.

 After having seen enough, I realized that the SI: 2011 Swimsuit issue had officially lost my attention, and I was ready to set the publication down.  As much fun as you think you might have with this issue, readers, my suggestion is this: don’t bother investing your $6.99 into endless advertisements, pictures of beautiful women and  subpar articles.