The New Yorker which started as a weekly magazine in 1925 is famous for its profound perspective as well as its dignified, intellectual and liberal attitude, which is sometimes taken as ‘snob’. The New Yorker is also known for its authentic comics and cover drawings which have a unique sense of humor, as well as its long essays, interviews, comments, critiques and fiction writings.

The ‘literary’ works, poems and stories in its archive have occasionally been published as books while the comics have traditionally been published as special collections every year. The books with The New Yorker logo have been recognized as an essential component of the intellectual and modern bookshelves. Yet this anthology called Blown Covers: New Yorker Covers You Were Never Meant to See deserves a special praise. The book which includes the cover drawings that never had a chance to be a cover, hence never published, and had their first edition in 2012, is a peerless means of discovery for those who are keen on popular culture.

Each “The New Yorker” cover not only gives a snapshot of the agenda, but also expresses a certain stance and attitude, which includes a polite objection when necessary, as well as witnessing the current period and recording it in an artistic framework. As you read the story behind each work and the anecdotes as to why they weren’t published, you realize that
it was always a matter of serving the message that is meant to be given, rather than being a matter of “self-censor”, “misunderstanding” or “crossing the line”.

There is a Barry Blitt illustration on the cover of the book of “blown works”. In the drawing, we see the Pope imitating Marilyn Monroe’s skirt-blowing pose from the The Seven Year Itch in 1955. Everyone loved the drawing and smiled at it in the editorial board, but no one had an answer to “Why would we print this issue with such a cover?”. There it goes: planned for the magazine cover, ended up on the cover of a “blown” collection.