The Harvard Business Review changed its look two years ago, adding photos to the covers(!!) and colorful illustrations(“The horror,” the NYT writes drily). But two years later, the remake is paying off with more sales, more clicks, and more pageviews.

Features that are very “un-Harvard Business Review-like items” are drawing attention, like a Q&A with Ricky Gervais. But it’s not bad attention.

Newsstand sales are up 19 percent, the NYT’s media blog reports. Even though single copies cost $16.95.

Circulation in 2010 was flat, after falling the previous two years, and the magazine has signed new advertisers. And page views have grown more than 1000 percent over the last four years.

Here are a few more examples of articles that seem un-HBR-like but are getting a lot of attention: