[My friend Peter Sheridan is a Los Angeles-based correspondent for British national newspapers. He has covered revolutions, civil wars, riots, wildfires, and Hollywood celebrity misdeeds for longer than he cares to remember. As part of his job, he must read all the weekly tabloids. For the past couple of years, he's been posting terrific weekly tabloid recaps on Facebook and has graciously given us permission to run them on Boing Boing. Enjoy! – Mark]
Today's tabloids never let facts get in the way of a good story.
"It's official!" screams the Globe. "Kate Crowned Queen."
Not exactly. The last time I looked Elizabeth II still sat on the British throne and Kate Middleton was Duchess of Cambridge – unless the Globe's "Palace insiders" know something HRH doesn't know.
The Enquirer reveals Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's "Secret Divorce Papers!"
Except they don't.
Photos of divorce papers splashed across the cover and inside the mag come from both stars' previous divorces. And those weren't secret anyway.
The purported $480 million divorce battle is about as real as Queen Kate.
"Communion Wafer 'Bleeds' For Three Days," shouts an Examiner headline. "Is It A Miracle?"
No – it's just a cracker. Get over it. Or give it to Angelina Jolie, since the tabloids are always complaining she's too thin.
There are "Terrorist Spies Working in White House!" proclaims the Globe, which for good measure adds that President Obama is secretly Muslim and "put double agents in his Cabinet."
This fair and balanced report shares a page with a completely impartial story headlined: "Why U.S. Needs Straight-Shooting Donald Trump!"
For those who can't get enough of The Donald, Us magazine features a Trump action figure, which presumably hurls insults at ethnic Bratz dolls and keeps Muslim Barbie out of the dollhouse.
Ben Affleck's "shocking new ink" gets widespread coverage in Us magazine and the tabloids showing the actor's back tattooed with a rising phoenix – but let's not forget that we saw this "new" tattoo months ago, though at the time everyone assumed it was fake ink for a movie role.
Sadly no fake ink was employed in bringing us the news that Real Housewives of Atlanta star Cynthia Bailey carries Preparation H in her handbag (to treat under-eye puffiness, she claims), Chloe Grace Moretz and Hilary Duff wore it best, and the stars are just like us: they play with dogs, bring toys to the beach, read labels, dodge balls, serve themselves, show sweet affection, and exercise in Paris – just like all of us, who find the City of Lights so much more convenient than the local gym.
Several times annually People devotes whole issues to weight loss and triumphant slimming tales, but the rest of the year is spent fattening up readers, like this week's recipes for "chocolate & peanut butter croque babes," and "Jalapeño chicken 'bombs.'"
The celebrity magazines continue lavishing attention on so-called "stars" in whom I have less than zero interest.
People devotes its cover to Maksim Chmerkovskiy's engagement to Peta Murgatroyd, which does not have me dancing in the streets; while Us mag tells us that Kourtney Kardashian is having a "revenge hookup" with Justin Bieber to "get back at" her ex, brings us up to speed on the "stars" of Teen Moms, and explains why Anna Duggar won't leave her "cheating hypocrite" husband Josh.
Taking a lesson from the tabloids, it seems she won't let the facts get in the way of a bad marriage.
Onwards and downwards . . .