"look at stage harru how can people hate him i jus don’t understand" that's not a popular topic & I don't wanna start a debate but that's the thing with Harry, I love stage!Harry more than life but I absolutely despise his public image. I just hate the LA socialite "I only hang with VIPS & Kardashians" persona. I really hate that part of Hollywood & it frustrates me that Harry has that image & Jeff defo encourages it. Tbh I blame Jeff & not Harry but still, it genuinely makes me uncomfortable
I understand the frustration. I hate this image, too. I’ll explain why.
The frustration is that fans feel somewhat insulted when presented with the image of Hollywood Harry, as if this is the ONLY Harry– haute Harry, A-list Harry, the Harry who says he hates fame in interviews but rarely acknowledges his bandmates or friends back home publicly, instead hangs out with the Kardashians, a family associated with reality television, whose only claim to fame is… notoriety. And wealth, I guess. The Harry whose every public appearance seems associated to the A-list of Hollywood and the U.K.
Fans feel insulted because we are supposed to be apologists for Public Harry, when Public Harry doesn’t seem to mind this image that much. We are expected to jump to his defense and say, No, but everyone says he’s nice, and funny, and kind, and he cares about fans, he does Make-a-Wish, he has immense talent, he donates to charity. We turn blue defending him, while he eats salad day in and day out at Cafe Havana at Harry’s Special Table and wears boots that cost more than a fan’s monthly rent.
The reason fans feel this weird dichotomy is because we’ve been so primed to feel extreme emotions toward Harry from 7 years–7!–of psychological conditioning.
We’ve been primed to either be elated or repulsed by the narrative of Breakout Star Harry. In our minds, he’s either working relentlessly with his Svengali to become a Star at any cost, or running away from this as fast as possible. There isn’t any other possibility.
So when an interview comes out with someone praising Harry, we feel anxious about it, as if we own him, as if he’s going to completely disappoint us when he doesn’t do what we want him to do.
I think you expressed some frustration, anon, because you feel manipulated.
I hate feeling manipulated too.
But EVERY celebrity manipulates his or her audience. It’s not because they’re evil people. It’s because they have a strategic team, a team that works to promote their profile in the way they want to be promoted to a WIDE audience (not only to the One Direction fandom), and the team promotes an image that protects their private lives.
If they didn’t dissociate their private lives from their public lives, they would have no life at all.
The boys of One Direction (except Teflon Niall) live extremely odd, uncomfortably invasive Truman Show-esque lives where fans EXPECT TO SEE THEIR ASS TATTOOS. In what AU is this a normal thing? In what universe is it normal for stalkers to show up every time you get a frappuccino?
I plead guilty to this too– whenever I reblog a gif where every motion is analyzed down to the millimeter, I am the intrusive public demanding that they reveal everything. Part of being a fan is to gush about them, and to scream about everything we love about them. But the line between curiosity and invasion should be a hard, uncrossable one. The fact that the One Direction fandom has ambiguous lines, and the fact that this ambiguity was set up by their management as part of the band’s appeal, is something fascinating and morally unprecedented.
They “agreed” to this life, some say. Maybe. Maybe they didn’t really know what they were agreeing to.
If we learned anything from the hiatus, it’s that we know very little, actually, about them. We all take Another Man’s magazine shoot for granted now, but remember everyone’s utter astonishment that this dimension of Harry was there all along? We were mesmerized by every aspect of it. This Harry seemed completely different from X-Factor Harry, or OTRA stage!Harry, or Jeff Azoff’s A-list Harry.
The only truth we know, really, is Harry Styles’s body of work: his work with One Direction, the movie Dunkirk, and his work going forth.
I try not to judge him– or any of the boys–too harshly. Just remember that they’re living their lives in the best way they can, not the best way we THINK they should. They are ultimately responsible for their own images. Harry has a very good team, and Jeff seems like a good, trusted friend to boot. Maybe his image is a way for his real life to stay on the down low. He certainly doesn’t seem ecstatic to be eating his twelfth kale salad at Cafe Havana. If this means he can enjoy his private time without people peeking over his shoulders, I’m for it.