North West is officially a Kardashian now. After years of making viral TikToks and appearing at fashion shows with her mother, Kim Kardashian, the 10 year old made her inevitable solo magazine-cover debut in i-d this week, where she was dubbed the “new wave” and “the princess of pop culture.”
In the fluff piece, North answered questions about her ambitions, hobbies, and fashion tastes in a concise manner. When asked how she’d describe herself in three words, she said “the best ever,” emulating her dad, Kanye West. This profile was somehow equally as insightful as some interviews I’ve read with her twentysomething aunts. But is the intentional branding of North as an A-list nepo baby and a budding fashion icon starting to get weird? Does anyone else feel like they’re seeing more images of this child on a weekly basis than their own nieces and baby cousins?
It’s certainly not unexpected. Kardashian has been soft-launching her eldest daughter’s career as a style icon, singer, reality star, etc. in a not-so-discreet fashion since she could walk. But their mommy-daughter TikTok account, which produced some genuinely hilarious content and also generated scrutiny, really kicked North’s celebrity into high gear. As much as Kim tried to convince us that these silly videos were an organic pastime, it seems like it was just a springboard for her inevitable career as an influencer.
I have to admit: I wasn’t totally wary of North’s omnipresence in pop culture that long ago. She is the daughter of two of the biggest celebrities on the planet. Of course, she’s going to be seen in public. I’m sure she genuinely likes dressing up and going to some events with her mom.
But with this new cover story, I’m starting to think Kardashian is really overestimating how much I, a grown woman—and hopefully other adults—are interested in the personality of a preteen, no matter how hip they are. Mainly, because children don’t have anything interesting to say most of the time. Look at this series of quotes, for example:
What’s your favorite outfit right now?
Vintage T-shirts and Spider sweats.
What item of clothing would you like to have that you don’t have yet?
My mom’s clothes and my dad’s clothes, if they fit me.
Who’s your style icon?
(Okay, the last answer was a slay. But I highly doubt a fifth grader has a wide pool of fashion references!)
Second, the interests and opinions of children who aren’t related to me is just none of my business. I’m not implying that there’s an inherently gross or creepy element to observing child celebrities. It’s not like I haven’t watched Kylie Jenner bake Halloween cookies with her daughter Stormi on YouTube. It’s just hard to care about them as people because their personalities aren’t even developed yet. And it feels like North is very much being marketed to adults my age (i.e. people who read i-d) as this wise-beyond-her-years wonderkid we should all be following.
I feel the same way about Drake’s son, Adonis Graham, who I think is absolutely adorable but don’t care to see embark on a rap career before he’s finished elementary school or join in on his dad’s comedic ventures. I’m biased toward Blue Ivy Carter because of the Beyoncé connection and the way she was criticized so badly when she was a literal newborn. Still, I’m perfectly okay just knowing her as Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s talented, well-dressed daughter, and that’s it!
“It’s not like anyone ever thought the Kardashians were above forcing their kids into the spotlight.”
This critique has probably been made a million times over. It’s not like anyone ever thought the Kardashians were above forcing their kids into the spotlight. Kris Jenner has taught Kim, Khloe, and Kylie well in this regard. The three sisters have incorporated their children into brand deals, their own products, YouTube videos, and magazine photoshoots as soon as they could hold their heads up. Meanwhile, Kourtney’s kids are in the public eye, but she’s not using Mason or Penelope to hawk her placebo health gummies or fake Goop website.
Overall, I think the fact that this profile was overshadowed by a video of North dressed up like the Graduation bear for Halloween proves that people just want to see kids being kids. I certainly don’t want to read about North’s totally natural desire to become a big-time capitalist and own SKIMS and Yeezy one day. I’ll take a TikTok over whatever this rollout is.