Is Chris Evans’ Profile In GQ Awesome Or Out Of Line?

I wasn’t expecting too much when I cracked the spine on the latest issue of GQ and began to read the cover story of Chris Evans. Captain America has always struck me as, well, pretty boring. But the article, written by Edith Zimmerman of The Hairpin, ended up being fascinating if a bit solipsistic. Basically, it’s about the reporter’s flirtation with Evans, which starts innocently enough but builds to him inviting her to parties, introducing her to his mom, and eventually being called the “mystery maiden” on his arm by the NY Daily News. It ends with the writer getting drunk at his house, passing out in a guest bedroom, and eventually climbing out a window to get a cab home.

Here, some choice excerpts.

Since we’re both single and roughly the same age, it was hard for me not to treat our interview as a sort of date. Surprisingly, Chris did the same, asking all about me, my family, my job, my most recent relationship. And from ten minutes into that first interview, when he reached across the table to punctuate a joke by putting his hand on top of mine, Chris kept up frequent hand holding and lower-back touching, palm kissing and knee squeezing. He’s an attractive movie star, no complaints. I also didn’t know how much I was supposed to respond; when I did, it sometimes felt a little like hitting on the bartender or misconstruing the bartender’s professional flirting for something more. I wanted to think it was genuine, or that part of it was, because I liked him right away.
Is this the part of a celebrity profile where I go into how blue the star’s eyes are? Because they are very blue. We both drank too much and said too much. I never opened the notebook of questions I had brought with me.

“Is it going well?” he asked.
“It’s going really well,” I said.
“Nailing it?”
“You’re nailing it.”
“You’re nailing it also,” he said. “I’m going to write an article about you.”

And although no, I don’t smoke, yes, I absolutely would join him outside, and can I actually have a drag? Maybe they make cigarettes differently in L.A., but when you share one with a movie star they’re amazing. Everyone should try it.

This type of story seems to be becoming a trend for GQ. Get a pretty, young female reporter to interview a young, hot actor, preferably in a space where drinks are flowing freely. In March, Jessica Pressler of New York was sent to spend 24 hours with Channing Tatum in the California desert. The story begins:

I wake to see Channing Tatum’s face, framed by a camouflage Snuggie, wobbling above me. “Hey,” he whispers, exhaling a cloud of booze so thick I can practically see it in the chilly air. “I think we should go into the house before anyone sees us out here and shoots us or something.” Near us, beneath the bushes we slept under, are a half-empty bottle of Patrón, a glow stick, an unopened bag of Stacy’s Pita Chips. I’m wearing a Snuggie, too. We are probably not exactly what the residents of this tiny mining town deep in the California desert would expect to find outside their windows.

And in Esquire this month, Lisa Taddeo had Bradley Cooper over to her apartment to cook dinner for their interview.

This story has inspired a lot of headlines along the lines of “Chris Evans Gets GQ Reporter Hammered After Night Out.” It has a lot of people talking—is this kind of reportage responsible journalism? And is it demeaning to have one of the few articles penned by women in men’s magazine be so fan-girl?

I’m not really here to make assertions about that. Personally, I think it’s entertaining. And way more interesting than hearing an action star go on about his workout regime. As a young female reporter myself, I can attest to the fact that there is often an oddly flirtatious vibe that develops when you interview an actor, artist, or musician who is around your age. It makes sense—you’re asking them a zillion questions about their life and, in a way, playing amateur therapist to figure out who they are and what makes them tick. It’s natural that they then ask the same types of questions, so it doesn’t feel horribly one-sided. Often, a special rapport develops (sigh, the time I baked cookies with the All-American Rejects for Jane Magazine)—though I’ve never had anything near the flirtation Zimmerman had with Evans. So I think there is a certain honesty in making that relationship the center of the article.

But I’m more curious what you think—did you love this Chris Evans profile or did it make you roll your eyes? Sound off in the comments section.

[GQ]
[Think Progress]
[Business Insider]

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