Happy Friday to Cole Sprouse and Cole Sprouse only. If there’s one person thriving during quarantine (aside from Stanley Tucci, that is), it’s the Riverdale star. Because in case you missed it, the actor is a serious hunk.
On May 20, Sprouse took to Instagram and Twitter to share some photos of himself, taken by photographer Alex Hainer, and unwittingly ignited a wildfire in the loins of people everywhere.
— Cole M. Sprouse (@colesprouse) May 20, 2020
While the longtime actor has legions of fans who are ride or die for his looks (as well as his on-and-off relationship with Riverdale costar Lili Reinhart), I have to admit that I’m not one of them. Because as much as Sprouse’s Jughead and his iconic beanie on Riverdale may tickle the fancy of many fans, I’ve largely remained impartial. That is until now.
The latest drop of photos—strategically launched into the world almost three months into quarantine for many—are the perfect pick-me-up for both your spirits and your heart rate. Taken from a distance, the images feature Sprouse in various work jackets, sporting his natural dirty-blonde hair, killer baby blue eyes, a red bandana and a *crispy* looking Jackson Maine-level tan. (We’re talking a baked at 375 degrees for 28 minutes kind of crispy).
Folks, Sprouse is a grade A hunk of beef!!! Seriously, someone call 911 because there is a fire in my loins! (But actually, do not actually call 911. That’s only for true emergencies.) At the very least, Uber Eats me some Perrier, because I. Am. Parched.
And all I have to ask is…what is happening? Looking at these photos I can’t help but have a serious yearning for Wyoming. Sprouse’s photo series makes me want to throw on a matching suede jacket, toss back a finger of bourbon and smell some leather, before riding horses on our sprawling ranch. So again, I ask: what is happening?
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Are these photos awakening some deep-seated desire to embrace Americana? Am I destined to wear prairie dresses and be forever coated in a thin layer of dirt road dust? What is it about Sprouse, looking like he just wandered out of the desert after a particularly trippy sativa experience, that makes my heart palpitate so? And how can Sprouse simultaneously look like an extra on Narcos *and* Ernest Hemingway in Havana, Cuba circa 1950?
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Maybe it’s the fact that we’re seeing Sprouse au naturel after four seasons of sporting his Riverdale character’s signature jet black locks. Maybe it’s the fact that—after being cooped up at home for more than eight weeks—Sprouse’s sun-kissed look, which makes it look as if he just got in from a long and windy horseback ride, evokes memories of being in the great outdoors during a time when we’re all very much inside for our safety. Or, maybe, it’s because his new aesthetic makes him look like Terrence Howard, who is and has always been hunky AF.
Whatever it is, it’s 100% working.