It's good to see this week's tabloids getting back to the really important news.
"Aliens Nuked All Life Off Of Mars!" proclaims the 'National Examiner,' which also brings us the more earth-bound revelation that disgraced President Richard Nixon, while happy to meet with Elvis Presley, "ordered hits on Hendrix, Joplin and Morrison."
It's important news like this that distracts us from the 'National Enquirer' cover this week, which with characteristic restraint screams: "World War 3 Is Coming!" But fear not – the 'Enquirer' brings us a "step-by-step" guide to "How Trump will crush our eight enemies!" Eight, indeed. No slouch, our Commander in Chief will "launch a coordinated campaign across five continents that will wipe out America's enemies in one fell swoop!" And those are the best kind of swoops.
It's the sort of bombast we've come to expect from North Korea, but it's troubling to find such bellicosity (yet again) in the pages of a publication that boasts better connections to the White House than 'The New York Times.' Our enemies? North Korea and ISIS, naturally. Syria will be nuked – that'll put Trump in the history books, if there are any that survive the ensuing global conflagration.
But then the 'Enquirer' battle plans get a little hazy. Iran will be hit by severe sanctions. U.S. troops will maneuver along the border with Russia to prevent their intervention. Boko Haram in Nigeria and al-Shabaab in Somalia will be targeted. ISIS and al-Qaeda cells in Spain, France, Germany and Italy will be hit. (By this point, we might be wondering if any nation's sovereignty is to be respected.) And while they're at it, U.S. forces will destroy the drug cartels' narcotics operations "throughout Mexico and South America." I can't wait to hear Donald Trump announce that he'll achieve all that within his second 100 days in office.
The 'Enquirer' seems to be having a special homophobia edition this week, with three major gay-shock-horror stories in its first seven pages. 'Gay Travolta New Squeeze' yells the grammatically-challenged headline above a story that amounts to John Travolta being photographed giving a thumbs-up sitting next to another man, in what looks like every fan photo ever taken with a celebrity, and nothing more. Ellen DeGeneres, Portia de Rossi and Drew Barrymore's 'Love Triangle Exposed!' declares the 'Enquirer,' which claims that the former 'E.T. – The Extraterrestrial' cutie has come between Ellen and her gal. Oh sure, Ellen and Drew are partners working together on a new TV series – but that can only be a front for lesbian sex, right? The 'Enquirer' team of trained psychics know these things. And then there's "Oprah & Gayle's Gaycation With The Obamas!' Because being on a yacht with the former President and First Lady, along with Bruce Springsteen and Tom Hanks, screams lesbian, because two women couldn't possibly just be friends, could they?
'Dying Queen Collapses!" yells the 'Globe' cover, with a series of photographs that appear to show her fall, helpfully captioned "Going . . . Going . . . Gone!" You have to credit the 'Globe' for its extraordinary photojournalism, capturing images of a Royal collapse that was missed by the entirety of the British media. Of course, 'Globe' editors probably don't expect their readers to do the research to find that these photos of the Queen were actually taken in July 2015 at the christening of Her Majesty's great-granddaughter Charlotte, at the Church of St Mary Magdalene in Sandringham, England. Nor do they expect readers to find that the photo of the Queen bent double as she apparently collapses is actually Her Majesty bending down to greet great-grandson Prince George outside the church. Look closely and you can see Royal nanny Teresa Borallo standing right next to the Queen. And the photo of a handful of soldiers standing around looking down at the ground – supposedly at an unconscious monarch, though we'll never know because she's not in the camera frame – could easily be looking at one of the Royal Guardsmen who routinely faint after standing to attention for hours during major public ceremonies. But not that day, when nobody collapsed, least of all the Queen.
Fortunately we have the intrepid investigative team at 'Us' magazine to tell us that Kourtney Kardashian wore it best (which I suspect has something to do with the fact that she was naked and bra-less under her Saint Lauren dinner jacket, while Emma Watson opted for an elegant shirt), that NBC anchor Lester Holt "could eat Mexican food every day," that 'American Housewife' actress Katy Mixon carries a teasing comb and hair spray in her Gucci bag, and that the stars are just like us: they spray on sunscreen, walk their dogs, and play golf. Extraordinary. The magazine devotes its cover to "20 Slimdown Diet Tips Stars Are Using,' featuring a slew of stars who barely have a spare ounce of body fat between them, so their diets must clearly be working.
'People' magazine devotes its cover to TV's ever-popular 'Bachelorette' series, under the headline: "Life After Bachelorette." But the headline seems to be missing the question mark I would have added at the end of that sentence. The feature story tells how six former Bachelorettes found love, and are raising new babies (no doubt because it's just no fun raising old babies). Admittedly, only two of these six have married men they actually met on the show, so that doesn't speak well for the program's ability to bring loving couples together. And fulfilling their dream of finding a husband seems to have had an unexpected dark side. "We used to stay up late and party," says former Bachelorette Ashley Rosenbaum. "Now we all have bags under our eyes, pushing strollers!" Who could have guessed?
Onwards and downwards . . .