Magazine Review: Frankie (AKA Unpopular Opinion Time)

I do not see why everyone loves Frankie so much. 

I am not new to the Frankie party. My first issue was at the beginning of 2009 and I loved it. I loved it’s alternative take on the ‘glossy’ world (I say ‘glossy’ as it’s pages are not, as anyone who has ever picked up a copy would know, actually glossy) and it was a fresh breath into a market filled with celebrity gossip. I loyally bought almost every issue over the next two years until I came home from my trip, bought the new issue and decided enough was enough and I had to put my foot down. 

I’m sorry, Frankie. You’ve gone too far.

You’ve crossed the line from ‘cute, alternative read’ to ‘annoyingly repetitive and disgustingly try-hard hipster’. 

I thought about actually reviewing this issue for you, but I decided that would make me too angry, so instead I’d just dot point some of the main problems I have with Frankie magazine.

  • Regular ‘glossies’ sometimes feature things that aren’t mainstream. Maybe you should take a leaf from their book and occasionally feature something that is. Really. 
  • Include some fashion the majority of the population would actually wear. And while we’re at it, it’s not like you’re showing anything but run-of-the mill models anyway. Don’t rebut saying that no-one wears what’s in Vogue. That’s different. That stuff is pretty.
  • Review something normal. Contrary to whatever you may believe, some of your readership really doesn’t give a damn about soy milk. In one of the first issues I bought you reviewed different instant noodles. I thought that was cute and unique. Two years later, it’s old. Move on. 
  • Does every article you print have to be dripping in pretentiousness? Reading your magazine doesn’t leave me with the fuzzy feeling reading other magazines does. I’m left feeling like I’m a massive underachiever or just generally not good enough. Here’s a tip: Hire some writers who don’t fill everything they write with how amazing they think they are. 
  • Not everyone who reads Frankie will be a vegan-hipster-homosexual. Again, variety, people. Maybe occasionally feature a reader who doesn’t live in the middle of nowhere and grow all their own food and generally assume they’re better than those of us who live in cities and gasp, eat meat, and use electricity. 
  • Hey Frankie, there’s this new thing, it’s called writing in third person. Maybe you should try it sometime.
  • Does every picture of every person you ever feature in your pages have to be artistic and unnatural? Really? You can’t take a front on, smilingly retouched one in normal clothes? It’s honestly not that much of a difficult concept, maybe you could try it with the pinhole camera you helpfully taught me how to make in this issue.

I know right now you have a strong readership. It’s because this so called ‘hipster’ trend (which really is a paradox, but again, you don’t want me to get started on one of my hipster rants) is currently popular. Like the Emo or Scene or Beach Bum trends of days gone by, one day everyone will wake up and realise just how stupid this one was and suddenly, because you’re such an annoyingly niche magazine, you’ll die a fast and painful death. Variety, people. Variety. Look up the word and try and incorporate it into your next issue.

As for me, I’m off to calm myself with some soothing celebrity gossip and fast food.


frangipani princess xoxo

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14 thoughts on “Magazine Review: Frankie (AKA Unpopular Opinion Time)

  1. I quite like Frankie, but I pretty much agree. In the last issue they had four or five 'different kinds of families,' but all these families had an edge. None of them were your run of the mill fam. Or, as my mother put it:"AND WHERE'S THE FAMILY THAT PAY THEIR TAXES?!" Anyway, I mostly agree about the pretentiousness. Also, I'm more sarcastic than most but after a while it's like I GET IT. YOUR WITTY AND A WRITER, AND SPEAK SARCASM AS YOUR FIRST LANGUAGE. IT'S GETTING BORING.I feel like the writers would be such bitches in person? but I do still buy Frankie from time to time. It's mostly the pictures and posters that keep me coming back. I like ripping them up and plastering them all over my walls. To be honest, I don't read many of the articles carefully anymore. I kind of like the ones about different countries…that's about itxxx rosie

  2. Haha, I love frankie. I do agree that sometimes it's a little on the too-indie side sometimes, but I'll like it because I feel better about all my quirks after reading it. :)x

  3. OH that's what I was gonna say. You think Frankie makes you feellike an underacheiver, don't read peppermint. I bought one issue and was attacked with eco-angels who made me feel bad for not particularly caring about the envvironment and whatnot. Didn't even flick through the whole mag.

  4. Hmm I get where you are coming from but I still adore Frankie. I feel like it opens up my mind to issues that I wouldn't necessarily come across. Sure I don't drink soy milk, I'm not a vegetarian and I'm probably not the most eco-loving person around, but I personally feel like it opens up a whole new world of issues that the mainstream glossies don't. I'm not left-wing (which is what I feel this magazine tends to lean towards) and I am certainly not what you would call alternative (probably more conservative than anything! ha), but I still appreciate the different ideas Frankie has. The writing is honest and I feel that the main glossies tend to miss the mark on what is "real" a lot of the time, instead of the other way around.But I do understand your point! I didn't exactly warm to it at first but there is just something about it that draws me in. I think I like the personality that comes through in the writing as opposed to third person, but then I suppose you can't really compare Frankie to the other glossies coz they are in totally separate streams in that sense.Wow that was a lot of ramble, but it's good to hear different opinions on the mag x

  5. I see where you're coming from but I still absolutely love Frankie. I love how it opens my mind to other ideas and beliefs that I might not have been exposed to before. Frankie always makes me think 'what would it be like to [have this job, live in this country, be this person]?'.Also, it's interesting what you said about disliking the authors, because I think they are one of the reasons I love this magazine so much. I really feel like I've gotten to know them through their articles.

  6. I agree with Laura and Nat. I do acknowledge what you're saying, Georgie, but at the same time I think you shouldn't read the magazine if you hate it so much.What's a world with no variety? I used to love Totalgirl, Girlfriend and Dolly as much as you and I've outgrown them now. That doesn't mean I say they're terrible magazines. Personally I think they're way to commercial and Frankie is more, well, real. The first person narrative and slightly pretentious vibe give it a personality unlike the "paper giants" of today.

  7. I totally agree with what you're saying (I actually found this post by trying to look for critical responses to Frankie). Sometimes, while I have been reading it, I have noticed I have actually been grinding my teeth. I feel like Frankie magazine doesn't respect me. Is that weird? It assumes a whole lot of bullshit about me, and then spouts out pseudo-intellectual, pretentious shit that is meant to entice me. The wording of its phrases is one of it's least endearing qualities to me (ie. rad, ace, swoon, 'crafty lady', 'indie darling', fancy, squiz, swell, etc) – it's like baby talk. It is as if they are so awkward about the fact that the first section of their magazine is just PLAIN OLD ADVERTISING that they have to sugar coat ever word.Most of all – I think that it is a magazine that purportedly supports 'crafty folk', 'crafty ladies' and 'crafty types' – however it is in this use-you-and-spit-you-out kind of way. You're a hit – the new big rad ace indie thing – then you're old hat.Anyway, that's my whinge. I enjoy your blog!

  8. ‘Hire some writers who don’t fill everything they write with how amazing they think they are.’

    Are you kidding? 1/3 of the articles are about stooping and low self-esteem. It’s fine not to like something but your argument is just: I don’t like it, therefore it’s bad. This is a really crappy blog.

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