Following the release of Maxim Korea’s recent September issue, which immediately bred controversy with its crime-centered photo spread with actor Kim Byung Ok, Cosmopolitan UK as well as Maxim U.S. heavily criticized the publication for its latest concept and, as Maxim Korea attempted to defend itself, “expression of crime.”
Claire Hodgson writes for Cosmopolitan UK, and begins frankly, “In perhaps the worst cover idea of all time,” and describes this:
Kim Byung Ok is smoking by the trunk of a car, from which a woman’s legs are protruding, bound with duct tape.
Under the copy “The Real Bad Guy,” the text enumerates various antagonist roles Kim Byung Ok has taken, and says, “So girls like the ‘bad guy’ characters? This is what a real bad guy is like. It’s to die for, isn’t it?”
Claire Hodgson goes on to describe the magazine’s glorification of violence against women, as well as the subtle victim-blaming suggestions being made with this September issue, and notes that with Korea’s exceptionally high rates of domestic violence, this is especially ridiculous.
In a petition through Avaaz.com, over 10,000 signers have given their support thus far in the case for Maxim Korea to recall the September issue.
Moreover, according to The Huffington Post, Maxim U.S. itself criticized the spread, saying that the feature is “deeply troubling” and that they “condemn it in the strongest terms.”