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Sports Illustrated opts for nudity instead of swimsuits in swimsuit issue

Sara Dobie Bauer is a writer, model and mental health advocate with a creative writing degree from Ohio University. Her short story "Don't Ball the Boss" (inspired by her shameless crush on Benedict Cumberbatch) was nominated for the Pus...

Apparently Sports Illustrated forgot to clothe its models for the swimsuit issue

I remember as a kid getting all excited about the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue because I wanted to see the bathing suits. Well, the times, they are a-changin'.

Everyone made a big hubbub over cover model Hannah Davis and her barely-there bikini bottom. If you were shocked by the cover, wait until you start flipping pages.

I give mad props to all the models, who look stunning. The photography is spot-on, and it seems like the girls had a lot of fun putting the 2015 issue together. That said, since when do bathing suits only include bottoms? I mean, I get it if you're on a topless beach in France, but most of us are not on a topless beach in France.

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It's like Sports Illustrated forgot the "suit" part of "swimsuit." Technically, the editors forgot the "swim" part as well, as they photographed girls in several of our nation's beautiful national parks... but I'm pretty sure there isn't a swimming pool anywhere near Arches.

It was cool to see so many of our natural wonders (I mean the models) standing in front of our national wonders (I mean the parks). Very patriotic.

There are a couple photos of girls actually on a beach, which is nice, since women tend to wear swimsuits at the beach.

But then there's the photo (and I'm not picking on the photo; it's lovely) of model Ashely Smith naked in a blanket. Or the one where Kate Bock is totally nude on a dock, although as my father pointed out, there is a swimsuit in the picture. He further backed up his point by saying, "It's artsy, Sara." Thank you, Mr. Snark.

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I was thoroughly pleased by the models' size variations. These are not stick-thin runway girls. Some are thin, some are bigger, and some are singing "All About That Bass," most notably Ms. Ronda Rousey in a black suit that leaves little to the imagination.

In Sports Illustrated's defense, the suits (when the girls were actually wearing them) are spectacular, as worn by cover girl Hannah Davis, Chanel Iman and Sara Sampaio. For a couple pages, I did get to actually look at bathing suits and pick my favorites, just like I did when I was a kid.

However, the vast majority of the girls wear close to nothing. Oh, and one other thing...

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I'm not an idiot, I know Photoshop is a necessary evil in the magazine business, but do some research! Real breasts don't sit straight up when the girl is on her back, and they don't push together with such enthusiasm with nothing but strings to hold them in place.

I'm not complaining. I like looking at beautiful, half-naked chicks as much as the next girl. I consider the female form a landscape to be appreciated and applauded.

Maybe I'm late to the game, but the Sports Illustrated swimsuit sssue is no longer about the fashion; it's about the T&A. No wonder teenage boys sneak it into their bedrooms. This is as close to porn as they're going to get without Mommy finding out.

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