Dov Charney, the Bad Ex-Boyfriend Who Can't Take a Hint


Poor, poor, poor American Apparel. Yes, pity is the worst thing to be on the receiving end of when you’ve just gone through a dramatic breakup, but it’s hard not to feel empathetic for the suffering clothing company. They’ve got an ex-boyfriend, you see, who will just not fuck off.

Things were once beautiful for AA (as Dov cheekily referred to them) and Dov Charney. Dov put his all into American Apparel, and together, the pair pumped out simple t-shirts and too-short spandex dresses for the masses. Everyone wanted to hang out with them. Everyone wanted to be them, for chrissakes.

But faster than it seemed possible, the promise of good pay and equal opportunity that AA and Dov promised they could deliver together, drifted away. American Apparel got hip to exactly who they had shacked up with, who had made this relationship what it was. The signs were there; Dov’s heroes were not impressive, his certainty that he was hip unconvincing, his financial understanding not great. He was an embarrassment to be around. Perhaps most notably, he wasn’t very good at not fucking AA’s friends, not to mention not sexually harassing and not assaulting them. AA tried to quietly brush aside smarter voices than its own, but eventually, finally, it became too much. Everyone knew what their love was like. Everyone knew what Dov truly was. Everyone knew what would happen eventually, if the course he had set them on was not righted. No matter what Dov said, anyway, everyone knew.

So there was only one thing to do: end it. Sure, there were slip-ups. But AA got it, and went in a very different direction. Once they moved on, it was over.

But it’s not over for Dov. He made AA what it is today! This relationship is all he has! He’s running out of money and trying to find a place to live, but he won’t let that deter him. He wants to move back in, but AA’s all like, nope, keep crashing on your friend’s couches. He’s trying to woo AA through backdoor tactics, talking to mutual friends, trying to get a feel for the water temperature. Maybe AA will take him back, he thinks, while sleeping on the dwindling pile of money he has left.

But there are a lot of other fish in the sea. AA knows what it had. It knows what it doesn’t miss. To American Apparel, Dov Charney is just a bad ex-boyfriend. To Dov Charney, American Apparel is the one that got away

Image of Dov and American Apparel during better times via Dov Charney

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