By Alex Hughes
I'll say it rather proudly: I love One Direction, although I'll admit that my passion comes just as much from my shallow and gratuitous staring at their poster in my room as it does from their actual debut album, Up All Night.
Between their hit single, "What Makes You Beautiful," adorable "One Thing," heart-breaking "Moments," and exhilarating "Gotta Be You," the five boys -- Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson -- have a gigantic hit album on their sexy hands. "What Makes You Beautiful" won for Best British Single at the Brit Awards, the band set a record for selling out Madison Square Garden in less than one minute, Up All Night debuted in the U.S. at the top of the Billboard 200 with 176,000 albums sold in its first week of release, their best-selling book is being published in the U.S. in May, and they've already performed on Saturday Night Live, and Nickelodeon's Kid's Choice Awards and iCarly. Did I mention that their debut album only came out a month ago?
Thanks to The X Factor U.K. and Simon Cowell, the boys have invaded the U.S. with their color-coordinated outfits, windswept hair, and accent that will make any freckled 6th-grade girl cry tears of joy into her Justin Bieber pillow.
I'm not usually one to jump so quickly onto musical bandwagons -- if I'm a fan boy for anything, it's middle-aged women on the Real Housewives or some has-been MTV celebrity. Myself, along with a select group of bloggers on Tumblr, circulate pictures of Heidi Montag eating a hamburger or Paris Hilton unloading her Louis Vuitton purse onto the LAX security conveyor belt as if it's fantastic, glittery gay crack. It was surprising to me when pictures of actual boys, and one boy in particular, began to pop up on my Tumblr dashboard and I did the unthinkable: started re-blogging them, permanently disrupting my constant stream of Kim Kardashian candids and gifs of Deena Cortese tripping.
I had no idea who this one particular boy was -- he was Middle Eastern, and had perfect skin and the most expertly styled hair I've ever seen. Come to find out he was more than a random one-time model and an actual sensation. His name is Zayn Malik, and that is how I began my One Direction journey (What's YOUR story?!?! How did YOU lose your One Direction virginity?!).
If you can take your eyes off their expertly draped scarves and impeccable wardrobe, you'll realize that "What Makes You Beautiful" doesn't continue with the recent trend of saying that all girls are beautiful -- they're speaking directly to one "beautiful," insecure girl on a beach (who, in the music video, looks like a boring stock photo sock model, but in reality, is actually me) and they probably think the rest of y'all are pretty goddamn ugly. I mean, Zayn thinks I'm so beautiful, that to prove his point, he put it in a MOTHERFUCKING SONG (proof at 1:14 in the music video)! SUCK ON THAT "fans" of The Wanted. Your dudes are just glad they could get you to orgasm. One Direction boys can get a girl (or boy) off faster than they can roll up the cuff of their well-ironed khakis.
To haters of One Direction in general: Do you not enjoy nice things? I'm sure there is some liberal, feminist theory against the most perfect thing to happen to the universe since the friendship of Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, and Lindsay Lohan, but just watch the music video for "One Thing," and if you fail to crack a smile, there is a 100 percent chance that you are the devil.
If you know what's good for you, you best be hopping on the bandwagon, because the rest of the world swoons at the sight of Niall's puppy dog face, Liam's eerily entrancing neck mole, Zayn's gorgeous smile, and Harry's curly locks -- they're a singing group of Bel Ami models, and they're firmly planted as global celebrities for (at least) the next couple of years.
Zayn will be on The Surreal Life in a few decades, Harry will break off from the band Justin Timberlake-style, and the rest will probably retire into relative obscurity in 10 years, gracing tabloid covers every now and then as they enter rehab or sell their honeymoon photos. Let's appreciate them for what they are now -- five wildly attractive and talented British boys put together by fate. You know that something has to be a miraculous work of God when there's a boy band without an ugly member (a Kevin Jonas or a Joey Fatone) in sight.