We've come to a pretty pass when the 'National Examiner' report that "Frozen Zombie Killers Coming to Life" is actually one of the more accurate stories in this week's tabloids.
Never letting the facts get in the way of a good story, the 'Globe' cover hails its "world exclusive" story: "Whitney Houston Exhumed!" Hardly surprising it's a world exclusive, since the late singer has not been exhumed, as we learn inside the 'Globe,' under its pleading headline: "Dig Up Whitney's Body!" Evidently "legal experts" are calling for her exhumation to prove that Houston's 2012 drowning death was murder. Except their "legal expert" is actually a tame "Hollywood private eye."
Rachel Ray now reportedly weighs 277 pounds and has been ordered by doctors: "Diet or Die!" according to the serial fat-shaming 'Globe,' whose cover screams that she is "Eating Herself to Death!" At least she's a celebrity TV chef, so she should have fun doing it. Did the 'Globe' team of highly-trained medical reporters put her on a scale, or hack her latest cholesterol test? Of course not. They simply eyeballed it, like "I Guess Your Weight" hucksters at a county fair. And they found a doctor "who has not treated her" to warn: "The excess pounds she's now carrying bring the definite possibility of high cholesterol, diabetes, heart failure or even cancer." What about hypertension, stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, breathing difficulties, infertility and sleep apnea? Why not throw the whole medical dictionary at Rachel Ray, because she's no longer rail thin? I'm only surprised that the 'Globe' didn't adopt its usual approach to celebrity health and warn that Rachel Ray has only weeks to live. Which reminds me – Nick Nolte is still alive and kicking, more than two months after the 'Globe' assured us he would die. Can it be long before the 'Globe' editorial board put out a "hit" on Nolte, if he keeps flaunting their reports of his imminent demise?
Singer Cher is another star the 'Globe' keeps telling us is at death's door, yet who refuses to believe her own press. She went and ruined the weeks-to-live narrative by announcing a major concert tour, launching in February. Undaunted, the 'Globe' this week tells us that Cher is "calling it quits" – after her tour is over. As if.
The Donald Trump-loving 'National Enquirer' continues its fair and balanced election coverage with this week's cover proclaiming: "Hillary Blackmailed FBI to Kill Corruption Probe!" The Democratic presidential candidate allegedly dug up dirt on investigators to kill the Whitewater probe two decades ago. That must be why nobody has ever heard of the Whitewater investigation and it disappeared without trace. Right. An unnamed "White House insider" reportedly "made calls to people" to "silence witnesses and bury evidence." And Hillary ordered this alleged cover-up? Well, no. Supposedly it was "contacts in the White House who worked for Deputy White House Chief of Staff Harold Ickes."
Close enough. I'm sure that will stand up in court when President Trump brings Hillary to trial.
Medical stories dominate the tabloids, such as the 'Enquirer' claim that singer Britney Spears "tweaks her twin peaks!" which is their 8th-grade way of saying she has had breast reconstructive surgery. Except she hasn't. As the story later admits: ". . . she's dying to undergo major nipple and areola rejuvenation." Because in the tabloid world the Thought Police have jurisdiction, and Britney is guilty as charged – assuming she's even thinking about it.
'Us' magazine's cover claims that Tom Cruise is "Choosing Scientology Over Suri," explaining that a five-day visit in July with his daughter was the star's first contact in months. I'm no apologist for that dangerously misguided cult, but the story begs questions that 'Us' fails to address. Clearly Cruise could be spending more time with his ten-year-old child, but 'Us' mag seems to have opted for the easy explanation, without asking what other dynamics might be in play. Is he choosing Scientology, or is he choosing work? In the four years since splitting with wife Katie Holmes, Cruise has filmed six movies in locations from Iceland to Louisiana, and has two lined up for next year. Does Cruise not want Suri with him on film sets, where she could spend lonely hours in double-wide trailers waiting for him? If Suri has been branded a "suppressive person" by Scientology authorities, as 'Us' implies, surely Cruise wouldn't be permitted to spend any time with her, let alone five days. Does Katie Holmes want Cruise to see Suri, or is she limiting Cruise's parental visits? Does Cruise think his daughter will fare better with a stable home life rather than being shunted back and forth between warring exes? These are hard questions; it's no wonder that 'Us' avoids them.
Fortunately, we have the crack investigative reporting team at 'Us' mag to tell us that 'The View' cohost Joy Behar makes a "fabulous lasagna" and has "gorgeous feet," that Rumer Willis carries knitting needles and yarn, melatonin-tinged water, and lip balm in her Cleobella tote, and that the stars are just like us: they sip boba tea, play golf, and (assuming that His Holiness the Pope is a "star") play foosball.
'People' magazine devotes its cover and five pages inside to the "Hunt for the Long Island Serial Killer." The shocking story of ten women whose bodies were found buried along New York's Gilgo Beach was horrifying when they were discovered in 2010 and 2011. But what makes them such big breaking news five years later? Perhaps it's because, by some wild one-in-a-million coincidence, the murders are also the subject of a two-part TV special airing next month, produced by . . . 'People' magazine.
Which brings us back to the "frozen zombie killers coming to life," for as the 'National Examiner' explains: "As Earth warms, deadly prehistoric viruses are unleashed on humanity!" And that's not terribly far from the facts. Global warming thawing the Arctic tundra has caused an epidemic among Siberian nomadic herders, hospitalized by an Anthrax outbreak that scientists believe was unleashed by rising temperatures. Anthrax spores can survive frozen in human and animal remains for centuries – undead, like the bacterial version of zombies – and the 'Examiner' rightly reports: "There are other pathogens out there, too." Admittedly, the tabloid's photo of an actor in full zombie make-up, blood-spattered with rotting flesh, broken teeth and lividity-dappled skin implies that it's human zombies rising from the grave, but let's give credit where it's due to a rare accurate story in this week's tabloids.
Onwards and downwards . . .