MEDIA: LATER: AN EXPERT’S VIEW - It is a promising start but Later needs to find its own voice

There are two ways of looking at Later. IPC’s new magazine for the Loaded lad who grew up is either an entertaining romp through the reservoirs of cultural kitsch accumulated by the average thirtysomething male - or it’s a title for sad men who last had fun during Madchester’s summer of love.

There are two ways of looking at Later. IPC’s new magazine for the

Loaded lad who grew up is either an entertaining romp through the

reservoirs of cultural kitsch accumulated by the average thirtysomething

male - or it’s a title for sad men who last had fun during Madchester’s

summer of love.



’Fitter at 30 than 20’, ’four men who quit their jobs and got rich’,

’together nine years and we still have sex!’, ’readers’ cars’, ’15

again’ - this is what the people behind Later think thirtysomething men

are obsessing with.



They try to say life is not so bad: although you’ve been with the same

partner for years you can still have an active sex life; you don’t have

to stick with your humdrum career and it’s OK, despite your

responsibilities, to be a big kid.



It’s fun, doesn’t take itself too seriously, uses ballsy typography and

has nice touches like Vinnie Jones’s problem page and Real Women (with a

few clothes on). Then there’s the sad side of Later: ’How Clint became

Clint’, James Hunt, Porridge, the Specials, James Coburn on Bruce Lee.

They are not sad individually but the overall effect suggests life was

better in the 70s. As if fun stopped with the birth of the Premier

League and Michael Douglas movies.



Later steers clear of contemporary music and football, presumably

because that’s where Loaded is so strong. The trouble is that by

striving so hard to not be like the lad mags, you can see its workings

out. The flavour of what Later is trying not to be is stronger than what

it actually is.



But it’s early days - you can tell from the surprisingly low levels of

advertiser interest in issue one. There’s much to admire in Later, and

I’m sure readers will move with it. I just hope it finds its own voice

soon.



Thirtysomething Stefano Hatfield is the editor of Campaign.



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