Kim Kardashian's NSFW 'Paper' Cover Is Her Most Self-Aware Move Yet... and It's Brilliant

As I'm sure you, your mother, and your dog knows by now, Kim Kardashian's ass debuted on the cover of Paper Magazine this week, enlisting a challenge: your move, Internet. The Internet responded accordingly, deciding to comment, critique, parody, create memes and think pieces galore. And I have to admit, it's finally broken my silence on the reality TV star, because it's her most self-aware move yet ... and therefore is absolutely brilliant.

Before I elaborate, I should explain my long history with Kardashian. Through my career as a published Internet lady, there are few celebrities I've blacklisted, never to write about. Suffice to say I'm not about to name them now, but Kardashian has been a mainstay from the beginning. But I've been slowly cracking, I mainlined episodes of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, to keep in-the-know about current pop culture. It was a painful endeavor, but it did season me with an awareness of just what it meant to be a Kardashian. Perfume lines and pretending to work at a retail store seemed to be a large part of it.

And then came the notorious Kim Kardashian's Hollywood. Though I think it's since safely phased out for most —"I HAD to delete it, it was ruining my life" —there was a solid two month period in which we were heavily immersed in the silly-but-self-aware, free-but-somehow-bank-breaking oddly seductive app of all time. I was literally in LAX, showing my friend Daniella that I was in LAX in the game (so meta). And despite its faults (20 K stars for a cat? Hell no.), I loved it because it was funny and clever. Its success showed a side of Kardashian that exhibited business savvy with a heavy dose of playful self-reference. That's a LOT more intriguing than a perfume line.

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So finally we have this cover, which is somehow the best and the worst thing Kardashian has ever done. My vote is in the best column, as it is what's finally broken my silence. See, with this cover, Kardashian's brand has been simplified and reduced into that majestic, oiled up curvature, and her name. It shouts a message: Kim Kardashian's brand is Kim Kardashian, and it is that name alone that creates hits, sells issues, constructs conversations. This is the most Kim Kardashian Kim Kardashian has ever Kim Kardashianed.

And that's the rub: morphing and becoming your brand, your parody, the thumbnail version of yourself, is an excellent way to herd off the "haters," a good way to make any judgement, legitimate or sophomoric, bounce off you. It's a strategy that Taylor Swift has also implemented, embracing her cats-and-baking persona, embodying the "crazy ex-girlfriend" in her music videos, boldly brandishing her "no its Becky" tee shirt. It's a strategy Justin Bieber should probably look into, before we banish him back to Canada.

Self-awareness, friends, is good self-defense and good self-preservation. You can clearly see in Kardashian's smile that she is in on the joke, and given that Kardashian has been, for years now, an on-going joke, that deserves snaps.

Now let's please never talk about her again.

Images: Giphy (2)