Colors Magazine opens relaunch with the Fans issue

Why do we pine after actors and athletes? COLORS magazine will begin its relaunch as a cultural quarterly with an issue dedicated to fandom across the world, inspecting the ins and outs of adoring fans of soccer stars, African politicians, and everything in between, to be released April 27th.

“Never mind the vast economies that fandom powers (Hollywood, Bollywood, and beyond),” write the editors. “Media-enabled, long-distance, overwhelmingly one-way love-not just of entertainers, but of political, business, military, and religious figures-drives history.” How so? In “The Land of the Rising Fan,” Pico Iyer investigates fandom in Japan. “The sense of loyalty to the group is so advanced-and so perfected here-that the country can seem at times like a cult writ large,” he writes. But, says Iyer, ultimately this sort of fandom leads to a flowering of culture and self-definition. “The more rigorously a group mentality is enforced, the wilder the explosions of individual eccentricity.”

In “Confessions of the World’s Greatest Fan,” a Q & A with novelist and cult figure JT LeRoy, COLORS finds an object of adoration who understands being a fan himself, who hasn’t hesitated to write fan letters to writers he admires. And yet LeRoy-whose fans include Bono, Madonna, and Lou Reed-finds its difficult accept the celebrity his own success comes with, never permitting himself to be photographed without a wig and glasses, or a mask. In Aleksandar Hemon’s “Win, Lose, or Riot,” the Bosnian novelist  explores the mania of the sports hooligan, confessing to understand the brutal feelings sports can engender while playing in a soccer game: “He said something about my sister in a disrespectful  manner,” Hemon writes, “and I kicked him in the head.”

The Fan Issue also includes “Walking With Mandela,” by Mandela’s biographer, Richard Stengel, on the amazing reactions people have to the Nobel Peace Prize winner; interviews with fans of such celebrities as Shah Rukh Khan, the Bollywood star, Boyko Borrisov, the Bulgarian Secretary of the Interior, and Morrissey, the English singer formerly of The Smiths; essays on celebrities’ bodyguards, how an indie music gig maps out, and the popularity of old war songs with teens in Ho Chi Minh City; and photo spreads on the art of devotion, from treasured celebrity artifacts to hagiographic celebrity portraits.

The Fans Issue of COLORS will be available on newsstands on April 27th.


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