Directionless: (100) Days of Winter & the Joys of Parenting
By Nick Pitman
Last week marked the 100-day anniversary of Zayn Malik leaving One Direction. To many, this is a sobering realization, a perfect example of time cruelly and defiantly marching onwards. A lot can happen in 100 days, and most notably, the 100 day marker is used by political scientists to get an overview of what a U.S. President’s term will look like. With this in mind, let’s see what 1D and Zayn’s tenures are shaping up to be:
The Old Guard, Showing Signs of Wear
The furious four (“fab four” was taken) just begun their first US tour dates of the year, and most shockingly, tickets are still available for several shows. European dates are sold out, but do American audiences care about 1D in a post-Zayn world? Paired with the rumors circulating that this could be the last 1D tour ever, things are looking bleak. Did I mention that Honda is giving away a fucking car at each of these shows? I mean, yikes.
Meanwhile if these headlines are any indication, Harry seems to have established himself as being about as interesting as a thinkpiece on man buns:
Yes, thanks Harry, for the advice from one rich white dude to another rich white dude: buy more rich white dude things.
Truly, things seemed grim in the 1D camp until yesterday, when it was announced that Louis Tomlinson, whom I previously described as “the sassy one that no one talks about” and who Lumpen editor Sam Stecklow more succinctly calls “The Ugly One” (to the dismay of twitter’s 1D fandom), is expecting his first child with stylist Briana Jungwirth. Both Louis and Ms. Jungwirth are 23. He’s like, 5 months older than me. The two began seeing each other in late March, the internet tells me. (As per the rules of Directionless, I’ve educated myself as little as possible on the current situation.)
Needless to say, this is the biggest possible bombshell of the post-Zayn era of 1D. It’s a perfect storm of pop culture voyeurism: The dark allure of inappropriately young parents, a pop band on top of the world beginning to show signs of wear, and the lingering possibility among 1D’s diehard Louis/Harry shippers that this is all an elaborate conspiracy to conceal their love.
Zayn Malik: Still Hot (Literally and Figuratively)
We all knew Zayn was going to Timberlake. It was just a matter of time. With a possibility that he may not be permitted to legally release music until 2017, though, can he stay relevant until then? If the first 100 days are any indication, Zayn hasn’t had an issue staying in the public eye. Zayn’s scant musical output post-1D flashed in and out pretty quickly, but his hair? Nobody’s forgotten #SHAVEGATE, and with #GREENGATE and #WHITEGATE following, Zayn’s publicist is a force to be reckoned with. The man is Timberlaking, world, so buckle up for two exciting records and then an overblown double-album contract killer. Maybe some surprisingly good SNL spots too (I can hope).
Final Verdict: Almost too close to call, but…One Direction
In the original draft of this article, I was ready to write that Zayn seemed to have the lead in these first 100 days, but In the light of Louis’ impending fatherhood, the attention on 1D feels revitalized in a way that can’t be matched by Zayn. One Direction feels like a more human unit than ever, with Harry tumbling to the ground onstage in San Diego and Louis facing down the truly intimidating prospect of raising a child with Ms Jungwirth. I wish the two nothing but the best in what must be a difficult time, but if it’s any consolation, I anticipate that those leftover tickets are already gone.
Nick Pitman is a musician and audio engineer living in Brooklyn. He is trying to get better at twitter.