Magazine Covers that Reference Magazine Covers

Magazine Covers that Reference Magazine Covers

The latest issue of the UK edition of Esquire features actor/comedian Ricky Gervais shot with arrows. It's a visual reference to the famous Muhammad Ali April 1966 Esquire cover, art directed by George Lois. And that cover is, of course, a clever visual nod to the famous paintings of St. Sebastian. Our pal Jeremy Leslie at suggests it's time to give that particular homage a well-deserved rest. We agree; but all this homage-ing got us thinking about other magazine covers that have referenced magazine covers. So here's a brief recent history. Our rule here is that the covers had to be a direct reference to another magazine cover; we're saving record album, posters, etc. for a future post. We know there are a lot more of these out there, so please send us your favorites.  -- [post by Josh Klenert and Robert Newman]

Esquire Arrows.jpg

Clockwise from bottom left: Esquire USA, Stephen Colbert, August 2008 (art director: David Curcurito); Esquire UK, Ricky Gervais, October 2009; Esquire UK, May 2008; the original, Esquire USA, Muhammad Ali, April 1966 (art direction by George Lois). Thanks to for inspiration and scans.

Left: Entertainment Weekly, October 2008, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert.
Right: The New Yorker, July 2008, illustration by Barry Blitt.


Left: Esquire, November 2003, Britney Spears (art director: John Korpics). Right: Esquire, August 1993, Angie Dickinson.

Time X.jpg

Top left: Time, Adolf Hitler, May 1945. Top right: End of the war with Japan, September 1945. Bottom left: Saddam Hussein, April 2003. Bottom right: Abu Mousab al-Zarqawi. Bottom two covers, art direction: Arthur Hochstein.


Left: Esquire, November 2008, Halle Barry (art director: David Curcurito). Right: Esquire, Bill Clinton, December 2000. Photograph by Platon, art director: John Korpics.


Left: Fortune, September 2005, illustration by David Cowles, art director: Robert Newman
Right: Fortune, December 1937.

Esquire Ali - Patterson.jpg

Left: Esquire, October 2003, Muhammad Ali (art director: John Korpics). Right: Esquire, August 1966, Floyd Patterson and Cassius Clay/Muhammad Ali. Art direction: George Lois.


Left: Vibe, May 2005, art director: Florian Bachleda. Photographer: James Porto. 
Right: Esquire, October 1968, 35th Anniversary Issue, art direction: George Lois.

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