Comments: Week of November 8, 2021


“It’s His Town Now,” October 25–November 7

Photo: New York Magazine

For New York’s latest cover story, David Freedlander profiled Eric Adams on the eve of his mayoralty. Journalist Devon Heinen called it a “definitive profile,” and CNN’s Edward Isaac Dovere said the story was “another illuminating chapter in the cat-and-mouse of Freedlander trying to pin down Eric Adams on … well, almost everything.” In a letter to New York, Democratic strategist Bruce Gyory argued, “Any attempts to limit Eric Adams to a single political or governing lane are a fool’s errand. Like many Mayors of New York before him, as varied as La Guardia and Lindsay, not to mention Koch and Bloomberg, Adams has the political wingspan to connect with different voters on different levels, utilizing different messages. That should be seen as a strength, not a weakness.” On Twitter, @tylerdavis000 added, “When working-class Democrats and lots of billionaires are ‘excited,’ that pretty clearly reveals the priorities: pulling the wool over the eyes of the people without means who voted for him, while prioritizing the whims of the megarich.” And @nothingsmonstrd wrote, “I am not optimistic about the Adams administration, but the area with the greatest possibility of surprises is his relationship with the NYPD. Adams was a cop, and he’s very pro-police, but he dedicated his career to being a pain in the ass to the NYPD.”

Photo: New York Magazine


“Katie Couric Is Not for Everyone” (October 25–November 7)

Rebecca Traister spent time with the legendary anchor ahead of the release of her unflinching memoir. MSNBC’s Chris Hayes said the story was “a magazine-profile-writing tour de force. Smart, funny incisive, and compulsively readable.” Publishing executive Jhanteigh Kupihea called it “fabulous” and noted, “I’ve seen some backlash against Couric’s more brutal self-excavations but I find it compelling that a powerful white woman would publicly reckon with her own role in how several generations perceive race, class & gender in America. Can’t wait for the book.” And @MichaelPWrites wrote, “The complexity and ambiguity of the subject really comes through. I didn’t know I’d want to read a long piece about Katie Couric, but I couldn’t put it down.” Kaitlyn Greenidge, features director at Harper’s Bazaar, was “as perplexed as anybody from the leaks around Katie Couric’s book but this … profile is so good at setting them in context, while not letting Couric off the hook.” Journalist Justin Fedich noted how Traister “paints Couric neither as hero nor villain yet is clear in her denouncement of misinfo (i.e. the Post’s ‘deranged’ coverage) and sexual assault (i.e. Lauer is ‘mercifully still off the air’).” @vanderhoofy wrote, “This profile is fascinating but it only confirmed my belief that this entire book is so ill-advised … like sorry I cannot come [up] with a single reason why anyone needs ‘my dead husband was breathtakingly racist in the ’90s’ except as, like, dissertation fodder in the 2040s.” Democratic campaign strategist Ryder Kessler countered that at the core of the story was “this observation — that the criticism Couric is getting for reviewing her own shortcomings is a marked contrast from the men who never self-reflect.”


“The Soft Sell,” October 25–November 7

Jesse Barron explored how direct-to-consumer companies like Hims are pushing generic erectile dysfunction and hair-loss pills on the masses. Journalist Callie Hitchcock said the story featured “incredible reporting and cultural criticism, and an interesting temperature check on contemporary masculinity. Also the bird’s-eye view of ad exec trying to market therapy to men is fascinating.” Of Hims, @JohnTFromBoston wrote, “What a truly awful company. Massively increasing people’s anxiety while also trying to trash what remains of the health insurance system.” Podcaster Erica Ifill found it “interesting as to how direct-to-consumer model fared and that eventually, the beauty/personal goods industry would get to profiting off of men’s insecurities too.” On Instagram, @emily.k.zee added, “Because men have superiority and ego instilled in them as virtues from infancy, much harder to prey on their insecurities than women.” Writer Jennifer L.W. Fink tweeted, “My reaction a few paragraphs into this article: Kinda glad men are the targets for products that target their self-esteem and manipulate their bodies and hormones for a change. And upset about that. This is not the kind of #gender-equity we need!” And @davidjuliano wrote, “This brand seemed to be a bit of a put-off from the start. Always a bit suspicious when somebody starts selling pharmaceuticals to you wrapped in a trendy Instagram advertising aesthetic.”

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Comments: Week of November 8, 2021