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VINE VOICEon March 15, 2006
Details is a mildly interesting magazine that is geared toward men of various ages and lifestyles. The main group that Details aims to capture is the 17 to 35 year- old male but there are articles in each magazine that could be appealing to men of many different ages, mostly in the middle to upper income groups.

Some things about Details quickly set it apart from other magazines. One difference is the "departments". Most magazines have departments, but instead of talking about the same things each month, these departments vary in their content (the only exceptions being "Know- Tell" and the "The Details"). Each one contains similar stories from one month to the next, but with different subtitles, helping to make each issue a little fresher than it would otherwise be.

As far as the writing goes, Details offers a great deal of diversity for a magazine. Yes, it is generally focused on things of interest to men, but it covers a very broad range of interests. You can find articles in this magazine on such diverse topics as the death penalty, raising kids, buying a new coat, setting up an internet business, breaking up with a girlfriend, or purchasing the best vodka. There are articles geared toward single men and married men, as well as younger men and middle- aged men.

I like some of the articles found here but there is one problem I have with the writing in Details. It is common to find eye- catching headlines on the cover of Details that tempt you to find out more. This is nothing new and most every magazine does this. But the problem is that many of these eye- popping stories fail to keep you amazed when you read them. Take for example an article in a recent issue. On the front, it reads "Is Your Wife a Bad Mom"? It sound like an engaging, intellectual read. But once you find the article and take in its 1,000+ words, you quickly discover that there is little or no substance. Basically, it simply tells men that accusing your wife of being a bad mom is a risky undertaking that could hurt her feelings. That is it. There is no intellectual analysis or quotes from studies; only the bottom line conclusion that mothers generally don't like to be called incompetent by their husbands. Other headlining articles in this magazine lead to similar disappointment.

The writing in this magazine is on the edge and very blunt. It is common to find several four- letter words in many of the articles and while this doesn't bother me at all, I know that some readers will consider it too raw, too edgy, and too explicit. Details writers have no problem telling it like it is, and this can be both good and bad depending on one's perspective.

Besides the language, some parts of this magazine could offend certain readers; namely the "Anthropology" page at the end. This closing "article" is meant to be humorous, but some readers will not see it that way. I don't know if it has always been this way, but what "Anthropology" does is show a person or multiple people and then asks the question "Gay or ______". For example, I have seen titles like "Gay or Best Friends?", "Gay or Cowboy?", "Gay or Neo Punk Rocker?", and others. With each of these, there is a diagram of sorts with arrows pointing to different clothing and bodily features and short comments about each one. Basically, it is asking you to think about these different attributes of the person or people in the picture and then decide if the way they dress, look, and act makes them gay. I find this silly and immature, but I can see how some readers would find it insulting. I don't know if Details has always done this or if the Anthropology page has been different in the past. But this is how it has been in every issue I have read and it needs to be changed.

Advertisements claim about sixty percent of the pages in each issue of this magazine. They cover products like liquor, cars, electronics, cigarettes, fragrance, etc. Even though this magazine covers lots of different things, the item most often featured in the advertisements is clothing. The magazine seems to have a penchant for high fashion and it devotes more pages to expensive clothing than anything else. And each issue often has its own unique smell, thanks to all of the cologne samples. You can flip through the pages and find several samples in each issue, with many of the latest and trendiest scents from the biggest names in cologne.

Overall, I am torn between liking or not liking Details Magazine. I like some of the articles on food, drink, politics and the like. But I don't necessarily like the shallow fluff that is often substituted for an intellectual discussion and I can understand how some readers would find certain aspects of this magazine insulting. This magazine is deserving of only about two and one- half stars which I will round up to three stars and give a small recommendation. Some will like this magazine and some will not. It's all a matter of what you like to read about and whether or not you can handle a magazine that pushes the envelope.
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on February 25, 2003
In the first 60 pages of the most recent issue I received, there is a letter from the editor, two pages which serve as a table of contents, and fifty-seven pages of advertising. The remainder of the magazine doesn't get much better. I don't have the time to search for articles among a maze of ads.
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on August 29, 2009
I bought a subscription to this magazine because it was a bargain and the covers always are eye-appealing and intriguing. However, I am disappointed with the magazine itself, now that I have been receiving it for about six months. As some of the other reviewers have noted, a huge portion of the magazine is taken up with glossy advertising, most of which is for clothing that only investment bankers or movie stars are likely to purchase. I like clothes, but it would be nice to see clothing lines other than couture advertised. More disturbingly, the magazine seems to have a split personality in its approach to masculinity. Many articles are written from the viewpoint of the stereotypical uber-masculine American male, with lots of references to heterosexual relationships, and other "guy stuff." Yet other articles come off as attempting to be from a gay-friendly viewpoint. I prefer the latter, but I don't see the point in having gay-friendly material when the rest of the magazine is trying to be a go-to guide for red-blooded males. I guess I don't fully "get" the editorial viewpoint that Details (purports to be) espousing. Consequently, I won't be ordering another subscription.
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on September 3, 2003
When I was in high school Details was a pretty cool magazine, lots of cutting edge stuff was featured and for some one who was a dork gave some interesting style tips.
I recently resubscribed and gotta tell ya that I wasted [money amount]. The articles are almost never more than 500 words long, and usually "think" pieces that seem tossed off while the author was in a cab on the way to the editorial meeting.
A lot of pretty ads though...
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on September 12, 2009
I got this subscription free as part of an Amazon promotion, and now realize I would not subscribe to Details if I had to pay for it. BUT, if you're looking for a lot of nicely-photographed ads, some nice (airbrushed and Photoshopped) pics of celebrities and models, and quick-to-read articles that lack any real depth, this is your mag! But why would you pay for it? You can see all of this online at dozens of websites for free. While I still love holding and reading a great magazine with terrific photography, in this case I vote for "Save a Tree."
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VINE VOICEon August 27, 2005
Jeff Goldblum's character in "The Big Chill" said that he couldn't write an article longer than the average person could read during a, er, "trip to the library" (wink, wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean?). The writers at Details seems to have the same marching orders. In these hectic times, maybe that's not so bad. The articles I have read are well researched and nicely bite-sized. I actually finished the entire magazine between PM mail delivery and breakfast the next day. The topics they covered in my first issue ranged from fashion to health concerns. And, again, they cover the topics in very few, well-written pages. I do think the models look like under-fed children but at my age, that could be tunnel-vision (grey hair, I remember Filmore East, you get the picture?). My suggestion, take a look. It's a magazine with an interesting voice and it may be for you.
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on August 4, 2002
in the early-mid 90s, Details used to be the best magazine in the world, with a huge focus on music. the writing was sharp and witty, and it reported on the latest trends months before every one else knew about the trend. then at some point in the late 90's they tried to become like all the other boring magazines out there (maxim, stuff, gear etc.)after that switch, they lost it. no matter how hard they now trying to be a younger mix of esquire and GQ, the magazine lost it's coolness factor.
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on January 31, 2004
Unbelievable amount of ads.
For $5 a year it is ok but do not plan on much real reading material.
A few good reads but unless you plan on spending $3200.00 on the jacket they recommend so that you are fashinoable do not plan on much help with clothing "details"
Completely out of touch.....but on the up side, with all the cologne ads it is the best smelling magazine ever.
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on August 25, 2002
There are a whole slew of men's interests magazines. There
are the industry standards like Esquire (quite possibly the best magazine out there) and GQ. There's the more risque like Maxim or even the low-brow Stuff, worth getting. Then there are those that fall somewhere in the middle, like FHM and Details. Even without seeing magazines like Esquire or Maxim, you can see that Details falls short. It's a glossy magazine that usually has pretty good covers, but that's where the excellence stops. The articles are generally substandard. They are usually poorly written or can't seem to get the facts straight. Their only saving grace is that they are so short (which is a problem when you run across the occasionally well-done, interesting article). And Details is not a magazine that seems to have its hand on the
pulse of the nation. More often than not, you skim through, looking for something interesting to read, and close it finding none. And in a men's interest/fashion magazine, nothing is more important than the photos. Unfortunately they are not that great. The photo spreads are way too short. But since the photographers have taken amatuerish or just poorly done
photographs, it actually works out. Basically what you have with
Details is a magazine that wants to be one of the big boys, but hasn't found a way to get there. You'd do better spending your money on an Esquire subscription.
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on December 30, 2011
Yes, there are a lot of ads. No, this is not award winning journalism. Regardless, I like Details, quite a bit actually. I travel a lot and subscribe to MANY print publications when they are on uber sale or free. One never knows what he will learn when reading. Anyway, I find myself folding more pages to refer back to in this mag than in the majority of my others. I also find myself laughing out loud, like a crazy person. There is usually one to two very funny articles every month. My favorite of all time was 'Are you raising a douchebag?' complete with a young kid wearing a blazer picture flipping off the camera.

Plus, I don't feel like a pervert when reading. I honestly don't usually take Maxim with me anymore.
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