Truth: I can’t stop looking at GQ‘s fashion feature on Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner’s super fancy 8-year-old son, Arlo Weiner, and his fall style secrets. The Littlest Dandy is even more transfixing than those Terry Richardson Betty Draper photos, but in a very different way. I think part of the draw is my internal debate over whether or not it’s meant to be funny.
There’s only one part in the article where Arlo sounds like a real kid, and not a mini Simon Doonan who’s snorted one too many pixy stix.
I can do this really weird thing with a sweatshirt: I put my legs in the armholes and then I get in a sitting position and stick my head into the top where the hoodie is and it looks really weird. So I’m probably going to be that. Or a toilet.
Toilet humor! See, that’s normal kid talk. But then it’s followed by this slideshow wherein Arlo channels Dakota Fanning and explains the thought process behind some of his favorite looks for fall. Just like a little adult. For example:
“We were playing a game where we hunt down my baby brother. We pretend he’s something called a cutie pie — they’re really cute but when you offend them they turn into monsters and eat people. I would wear the jumpsuit to school but mostly I’ve worn it around the house. It’s so comfortable. I wear it to do dishes or take out the trash. It’s really warm so it’s also good for fall.”
See, this makes us wonder. Does GQ think that exploiting this very uninhibited 8-year-old kid is funny? Does Matthew Weiner think it’s funny? Because all we know for sure is that Arlo Weiner takes himself extremely seriously. And should never wear the jumpsuit to school.
“We were walking outside through some gardens and so I picked the green shirt and green jacket because they go with the surroundings. Then I added the gray vest because I love gray with green. Also, red and green go well together — you know, they’re matched on the color table. Those are corduroy pants. What’s great about corduroy is that it’s a heavy fabric but it’s soft, not like jeans. Perfect for fall!”
Notice there’s no mention of the TOP HAT. When have you ever seen a child in a top hat?
“I like BIG ties. I don’t like skinny ties because if you’re wearing a thin tie with a button-up and a suit it’s kind of unnoticeable and doesn’t really make a difference. You may as well not be wearing one. A big tie is noticeable. There was a period last year where I had an urge to wear neckties every day. A necktie is cleaner and more simple but a bowtie you can match with more outfits.”
Ah, relaxing poolside in LA, just like Don Draper. But would Draper wear a big bowtie? We think not.
So yeah, we’re oddly intrigued/totally confused by this feature. Apparently GQ readers are too, because there’s a strange battle going on in the comments between people who think Arlo is fabulous and others who claim he is “all style and no substance — just like the show.” Zing!
While we’d normally point to the fact that GQ is a men’s fashion magazine, and thus Arlo likely had very little do with the featured outfits, his precocious commentary tells a much different story. Maybe he deserves a spot in the wardrobe department? We all know how much Matthew Weiner enjoys promoting from within. Regardless, one thing is certain: we bet that one day Arlo resents the hell out of his father for letting this story happen.