Details (magazine)

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Cover of April 2009 issue
Editor-in-ChiefDan Peres
CategoriesFashion, lifestyle, politics
PublisherCondé Nast
Total circulation
(December 2012)
Final issueDecember 2015
CompanyAdvance Publications
CountryUnited States
Based inNew York City

Details (stylized in all caps) was an American monthly men's magazine that was published by Condé Nast, founded in 1982 by Annie Flanders.[2] Though primarily a magazine devoted to fashion and lifestyle, Details also featured reports on relevant social and political issues.[3][4] In November 2015 Condé Nast announced that the magazine would cease publication with the issue of December 2015/January 2016.[5][6][7]


In 1982, Details was launched, as a downtown culture magazine, by Annie Flanders, a former fashion editor, at a meeting of former employees of the newly defunct SoHo Weekly News, including Ronnie Cooke, Stephen Saban, Lesley Vinson, Megan Haungs and Bill Cunningham.[8][2][9][10]

The Los Angeles Times detailed how the magazine changed hands a number of times in the years thereafter:

"In 1984, to save the publication from bankruptcy, Flanders sold a controlling interest for $300,000 to a British publisher. He in turn unloaded it in mid-1987 on a New York entrepreneur."[2]

Alan Patricof bought the magazine in 1988. Condé Nast bought the magazine a year later for $2 million.[11] Its later format stemmed from a relaunch in October 2000 following the transfer of the magazine from Condé Nast to sibling division Fairchild Publications.[12] Between its last issue at Condé Nast and first at Fairchild, publication of Details was temporarily suspended. This allowed for extensive redesign and strategic repositioning of the magazine.

Music Matters CDs[edit]

From 1991 to 1999 the magazine produced sampler CDs that were sent out to current subscribers free of charge. While the CDs concentrated on then-current music, older songs were included as well. The initial CD was produced by Andrea Norlander of MTV, who oversaw concept, musical content, design, and marketing of the project.

  • 1991: Music Matters [Summer 1991]
  • 1991: Music Matters [Holiday 1991]
  • 1992: Music Matters Volume 3
  • 1992: Music Matters Volume 4
  • 1993: Music Matters Volume 5 (There were one and two CD versions of this volume.)
  • 1994: Music Matters Volume 6
  • 1995: Music Matters Volume 7
  • 1996: Music Matters Volume 8
  • 1997: Music Matters Volume 9
  • 1998: Music Matters Volume 10
  • 1999: Details 2000 Tomorrow's Music Today!

Comics journalism[edit]

Cartoonist Art Spiegelman was comics editor of Details in the mid-1990s; in 1997, he began assigning comics journalism pieces to a number of his cartoonist associates.[13] The magazine published these works of journalism in comics form throughout 1998 and 1999, helping to legitimize the form in popular perception.[14]

  • "Burning Man" (Nov. 1997), pp. 172-175 — Peter Kuper
  • "Pray for Surf" (May 1998), pp. 150-153 — Ben Katchor on sports
  • "So Much Comedy, So Little Time," (July 1998), pp. 148-151 — Peter Bagge
  • "Clothes Encounters" (August 1998), pp. 128-133 — Charles Burns illustrating a fashion show
  • "The War Crimes Trials (September 1998), pp. 260-265 — Joe Sacco on the aftermath of the Bosnian War
  • "Ozziefest [sic] '98" (October 1998), pp. 184-187 — Kaz on Ozzy Osbourne
  • "Ready to Die" (May 1999), pp. 146-151 — Kim Deitch
  • "Smash Violence!" (September 1999), pp. 202-203 — Jay Lynch parodying censorship of the media
  • "Chasing Melissas!" (October 1999), pp. 192-197 — Kim Deitch on the link between computer viruses and pornography
  • "The Rude Blues" (April 2000), pp. 140-145 — Joe Sacco


In December 2002, Details featured American pop star Justin Timberlake on its cover, accompanied by the text: “Can we ever forgive Justin Timberlake for all that sissy music? Hey... at least he got into Britney's pants”.[15] This cover and headline were featured retrospectively in the 2021 documentary Framing Britney Spears, which highlighted how Timberlake benefited from the media narrative surrounding his breakup with Britney Spears, while Spears herself saw her image suffer.[16] This same cover features another story, "Forget feminism: why your wife should take your name."[16]

In 2004, Details published a piece titled "Gay or Asian?" that featured a photo of an East Asian man, and "tips" on how to tell the difference.[17] Some of the text that accompanied the photo: "One cruises for chicken; the other takes it General Tso-style. Whether you're into shrimp balls or shaved balls, entering the dragon requires imperial tastes." The article generated protests over its racism and homophobia — and over how it erased the existence of gay Asian men. To protest, LGBT Asian American individuals and groups came together and held demonstrations.[18]

Staff contributors[edit]

Frequent contributors included Augusten Burroughs, Blake Nelson, Michael Chabon, and Bill Cunningham. Contributors included Beauregard Houston-Montgomery.[19] Former staffers included Pete Wells, Ian Daly, Kayleen Schaefer, Erica Cerulo, Andrew Essex, Yaran Noti, Jeff Gordinier, Karl Taro Greenfeld, and Alex Bhattacharji.[20]

Its Editor-in-chief, for 15 years, since 2000[21][22] was Dan Peres, the former husband of Australian actress Sarah Wynter.


  1. ^ "eCirc for Consumer Magazines". Alliance for Audited Media. December 31, 2012. Archived from the original on April 18, 2014. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
  2. ^ a b c Gabree, John (March 24, 1988). "Details, a Trendy Comer Among Fashion-Conscious Periodicals". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  3. ^ "New York Magazine". New York. New York Media, LLC: 39. October 1, 1990. ISSN 0028-7369. Archived from the original on January 20, 2024. Retrieved November 14, 2012.
  4. ^ "Los Angeles Magazine". Los Angeles. Emmis Communications: 116. March 2003. ISSN 1522-9149. Archived from the original on January 20, 2024. Retrieved November 14, 2012.
  5. ^ Judah Robinson (November 18, 2015). "Condé Nast Halts Publication of Details Magazine". Huffington Post. Archived from the original on December 8, 2015. Retrieved December 6, 2015.
  6. ^ O'Shea, Chris (November 18, 2015). "Condé Nast Folds Details Magazine". FishbowlNY. Adweek. Archived from the original on November 20, 2015. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  7. ^ Horgan, Richard (November 18, 2015). "Details Demise Puts the Spotlight Back on Annie Flanders". Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  8. ^ Horyn, Cathy (June 25, 2016). "What It Was Like to Be Photographed by Bill Cunningham". The New York Times. Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  9. ^ Véronique Hyland (November 18, 2015). "Details Magazine is Officially Done". The Cut. Archived from the original on September 11, 2021. Retrieved May 21, 2020.
  10. ^ Matthew Rose (March 21, 2000). "Advance Publications to Close Details And Relaunch It as a Fashion Magazine". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on January 20, 2021. Retrieved December 6, 2015.
  11. ^ Kuczynski, Alex, "Details Editor Ousted and the Magazine Will Go to Fairchild, Jamie Billimoria Being the Editor," New York Times (March 21, 2000): C13.
  12. ^ "Details Begins Cartoon Journalism Features," The Comics Journal #205 (June 1998), p. 27.
  13. ^ Mackay, Brad. "Behind the rise of investigative cartooning," THIS Magazine (Jan. 2008). Archived at Ad Astra Comix Archived November 7, 2022, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ Swift, Andy (February 21, 2021). "Loser: Details magazine". TVline. Archived from the original on August 22, 2021. Retrieved August 22, 2021.
  15. ^ a b "The betrayal of Britney Spears: how pop culture failed a superstar". The Guardian. February 8, 2021. Archived from the original on February 8, 2021. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  16. ^ Karen Sakai (April 9, 2004). "'Gay or Asian?' Spread Causes Minority Uproar". Asia Pacific Arts. UCLA Asia Institute. Archived from the original on February 10, 2014. Retrieved April 17, 2015.
  17. ^ Esther Wang (April 1, 2014). "Beyond the #Hashtag: Movement Building Lessons from #CancelColbert". Race Files. Archived from the original on January 28, 2021. Retrieved April 17, 2015.
  18. ^ Vanity Fair. Condé Nast Publications. 1996. Retrieved November 14, 2012.
  19. ^ Kassel, Matthew (November 19, 2015). "Former Staffers Remember Details Magazine". The New York Observer. Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  20. ^ Rosman, Katherine (February 25, 2020). "Chaos at Conde Nast: the men's magazine run on drug-fuelled dysfunction". The Independent. Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  21. ^ Reddinger, Paige (November 18, 2015). "Condé Nast Folds Details Magazine". Daily Front Row. Archived from the original on January 2, 2022. Retrieved January 2, 2022.

External links[edit]