Where were you when you got the news?
I was at work, scrolling through Twitter when BAM: “Zayn Malik Quits One Direction.”
I didn’t want to believe it. I was too distracted by the deafening voices in my head screaming all kinds of OMGs and WTFs that I almost didn’t notice a small cracking noise—NBD, just my heart breaking.
One Direction confirmed Malik’s exit on their Facebook page, stating:
After five incredible years Zayn Malik has decided to leave One Direction. Niall, Harry, Liam and Louis will continue as a four-piece and look forward to the forthcoming concerts of their world tour and recording their fifth album, due to be released later this year.
So, now what? Well, everyone’s been in a right state ever since, with hashtag #AlwaysInOurHeartsZaynMalik trending something heavy on Twitter. Malik says he’s leaving because he wants to be “a normal 22-year-old.” Malik, YOU WERE NEVER NORMAL. You were a god among men, dammit.
Directioners, you can choose to mourn or move on from this tragedy, and I, for one, am choosing the latter. 1D simply can’t thrive with just four members, so I’d like to present the top candidates in the slideshow above to replace Malik. Yes, after painstaking research, based solely on his signature, devil-may-care hair, replete with sexy cowlick, we present to you the Top 5 best options for how to #ReplaceZayn.