The End of the Malik Era

Good bye, my love.

Alas, the fearful day has arrived—Zayn Malik, the face, the soul, the voice, the EVERYTHING of British boyband wonder One Direction, has officially left in pursuit of a solo career.

This was no doubt a rough past couple weeks for the One Direction fans. Even for non-One Direction fans too, or those who really just supported Zayn Malik in general. Here’s what one blogger on Tumblr had to say:

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I hate to admit it, but that’s just a solid fact.

Zayn has been well popular throughout the female fans due to his bad-boy-esque good looks, the voice of an angel, the facial hair worthy of Ryan Gosling, and, of course, the heart-melting accent. Honestly, what’s not to love?

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I MEAN??????????????!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!!???!?!!  But Zayn’s come a long way. He was first chosen among a competitive pool in Britain’s X-Factor, and later assembled by the infamous Simon Cowell along with fellow competitors Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson to create the legendary One Direction.

They probably had no idea how much fame was about to come their way. (Pixgood) 

With humble beginnings, Malik never seemed to prize the lime light. He had always been a private person, and although the offering of money and fame is an attractive incentive for many, it was quite the opposite for Malik. He did what he did because he truly loved singing, and eventually, when One Direction blew up in success, he continued his career for his fans.


As the number of photos of Zayn with this mystery lady continued to pop up on the internet, with party goers of that night confirming their intimacy, Zayn grew increasingly stressed, and understandably so.

Zayn was seen cozying up with a girl that wasn’t his fianceé. (Lauren Rich, Instagram)

But Malik had always been plagued with probably one of the most notorious press among the other boys in his group. He had been caught for smoking weed, and supposedly ‘cheating’ on his fiancee Perrie Edwards.  Although things cooled down for a bit, the heat rose once again when photos were revealed of Malik getting cozy with a girl that was clearly not Edwards. Malik, obviously, denied these altercations, and claimed that he loved Edwards:

Sounds like something Zayn would say.
Sounds like something Zayn would say. (Zayn Malik, Twitter)

I guess, though, that Malik deemed this time of bad press as an excuse, because the pop star soon left his tour to take a little ‘break’, and that’s when news broke of his official decision to leave One Direction entirely.  

Cue the sounds of sobbing and the shattering of hearts. (One Direction, Facebook)
Cue the sounds of sobbing and the shattering of hearts. (One Direction, Facebook)

The fandom was heartbroken. Malik’s popularity on Twitter reportedly took a nosedive after his announcement, thanks to all the disappointed fans who had previously promised to stand by the band’s side no matter what. Check out some reactions to Zayn leaving One Direction: (imma embed all these and probably only have like 4-5)

Super sly, Denny's. (Denny's Diner, Twitter)
Super sly, Denny’s. (Denny’s Diner, Twitter)
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True. (Kumail Nanjiani, Twitter)
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Honestly the only appropriate way to mourn this event. (Courtney Act, Instagram)
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Same. (
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A bit of a That’s So Raven moment here. (

But what broke apart the fandom, or at least what was left of it, even more, was when Naughty Boy, a popular producer who has previously worked with stars like Sam Smith, Rihanna, Taio Cruz, and more, retweeted a video that referred to Zayn and Naughty Boy working together.

“Zaughty,” as mentioned in this video, is the combination of Zayn + Naughty (Boy), ultimately indicating that The collaboration of Zayn and Naughty Boy has ‘saved’ this fan.

Twitter blew up. Not only were the fans angry, but the band members too.

Long story short, Louis Tomlinson stepped in, then Naughty Boy attacked again, then Naughty Boy released a song in the works with Zayn as proof and promised the fans they’d thank him later, Louis Tomlinson’s 11 year old sister stepped in for some reason to claim that she had more followers than Naughty Boy, and Zayn’s popularity dropped even more.


The One Direction fandom is in a mess, but it’s understandable why.

So what do you think? Is what Zayn did ultimately right, or is it the wrong choice?

– Faith Choi (’16)
Header: Syco Entertainment
Captions: Faith Choi (’16)

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