There are trace elements of facts in many of this week's tabloids stories, but that hasn't stopped the rags' alchemists from spinning gold out of these barely-detectable sub-atomic particles.
George Clooney and wife Amal have purchased an estate on the Italian isle of Sardinia, but because she's there with their twins and George is away, the National Enquirer cover story proclaims: "Clooney Divorce Explodes – Amal Moves Out!" She has reportedly "fled their marital home in England" and "furious George has begged Amal to come back." Except Clooney isn't in England. He has been working in Los Angeles, as the most cursory investigation would have told the Enquirer. But if Amal is in Sardinia and George isn't there, they must be getting divorced. Right?
"Glenn Miller Death Plane Found!" reports the Globe. Well, not exactly. The unidentified wreckage of a WWII-era plane was found off the south coast of England. So the Globe figures this must be the big band leader's plane, because no other planes went down in the sea during WWII, did they?
Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton is the target of terrorists as "ISIS Plants Poison in Kate's Grocery Store," claims the Globe. Or at least, a post on an extremist website suggested that someone should poison her groceries, which means it's as good as happened.
Jennifer Aniston is adopting a baby girl from a Mexican orphanage, the Globe reports under the happy headline: "Jen Aniston's Mom At Last!" Apparently she has made a donation to a Mexican orphanage, so it stands to reason she must be taking one of the kids home. Don't you get one free child for every $10,000 you donate?
The gloved one's daughter Paris Jackson is "in rehab over Jacko pedo film!" claims the Enquirer. Yes, the 20-year-old has confirmed that she is taking some time off "to prioritize her physical and emotional health," and for the Enquirer that can only mean one thing: she's devastated by the new documentary Leaving Neverland, which probes allegations of child sex abuse against her father Michael Jackson. The Globe apparently thinks that's shocking news for Paris, who clearly has never heard such allegations before. Right.
And then of course the tabloids bring us a host of stories which seem to lack even the faintest evanescence of a fact having once been in the vicinity. Accused killer Robert Durst "ate his victim," claims an alleged friend hiding behind the pseudonym William Steel, according to the Enquirer. Millionaire Durst allegedly told his pal how he disposed of wife Kathleen: "I tortured her, strangled her and ate her." Sadly there's no recipe included in this story.
Chanteuse Celine Dion gets the fantasy treatment from the Globe, which shows a photo of the singer "slumped on a gurney in Las Vegas" beside the headline "Fears For Celine After Backstage Collapse!" In reality, Dion had been dancing wildly at a Lady Gaga concert, and then jokingly lay down on the gurney, to the delight of all around her. She must be so happy that the Globe has a sense of humor and didn't misinterpret the playful photo.
"Money-hungry mistress chased Bezos from Day 1," the Globe reports about Lauren Sanchez, who is apparently romancing the world's wealthiest man, Amazon chief Jeff Bezos. Sanchez allegedly enjoyed shopping sprees when married to one of Hollywood's wealthiest and most influential talent agents, Patrick Whitesell. Truly shocking. Why wasn't she wearing sackcloth and ashes like every other Beverly Hills wife?
The Enquirer, reveling in finally breaking a story that might just be true, devotes almost two pages to a self-congratulatory feature cataloguing how the world's media followed up on its story last week about Bezos's affair with Sanchez. The Enquirer cover also teases "The Bezos' Secret Divorce File," which unsurprisingly tells us nothing new except for adding a timeline to the painfully sophomoric mash notes Bezos allegedly texted Sanchez, suggesting that their crush heated up as early as April 2018, and not in the fall of 2018 after Bezos and Sanchez split from their respective spouses, as the Amazon honcho claims.
Branding Meghan Markle "the most hated member of the royal family," the Globe cover story proclaims: "Charles tells Harry: Meghan Must Go!" The Globe claims to have uncovered a "hush-hush" email sent by a member of the Queen's inner circle to the royal family and courtiers, stating that "Duchess Meghan is a horror" and a "cancer" that must be "cut out" of the royal family. After years of reporting with no doubt 100% accuracy on private conversations in Buckingham Palace between the Queen and her family, it stands to reason that the Globe now has access to Palace emails. Let's hope the Pulitzer committee is paying attention.
Sadly, the royal family may be stuck with Meghan for a while longer as her "hen-pecked" husband Prince Harry has dug in his heels and said a divorce "will only happen over my dead body!" Maybe if he read the Globe a little more closely he wouldn't say such things.
Did Us magazine secretly settle a lawsuit filed by the Church of Scientology? If not, it's hard to explain this week's sycophantic cover story on John Travolta and wife Kelly Preston: "Love, Loss & Scientology." It's a disturbingly gentle puff piece that promotes Scientology's great benefit to their lives, yet skirts over questions of his sexuality and the insidious nature of this controversial cult, and still manages to tell us nothing new. One can only wonder at the credulity of Travolta who explains that after the tragic accidental death of his 16-year-old son a decade ago, "The church never left our sides for two years. I don't know if I would have made it through without their support." That's heart-warming indeed, but if Travolta imagines that the Church of Scientology devotes its staff and resources for two years to anyone else in the cult whose name isn't Tom Cruise, he's even more gullible than he appears.
People magazine brings us the feel-good story of "Oprah's Daughters," who of course are not the fruit of her loins, but the students at the South African school she sponsors. The girls "are more than students – they're family," reports the mag. Sure, they're family – but just watch how fast the door slams in their face if they try to turn up at her home for Thanksgiving dinner.
Fortunately we have the crack investigative team at Us magazine to tell us that Mariah Carey wore it best (there's a first), that Marcia Gay Harden "can blow a piercing whistle from an acorn shell," that Grey's Anatomy star Kelly McCreary carries Aleve hand cream and lip balm in her Clare V bag, and that the stars are just like us: they get takeout, drink coffee, buy bread and carry their groceries. Do these stars ever stop eating?
The National Examiner as always brings us news we can use, promising readers that they can "Drop 10 lbs on popcorn diet." Clearly they have never had Boom Chicka Pop's "Dark Chocolaty Drizzled Sea Salt Kettle Corn," at 840 calories per 168 grams.
Just in case Examiner readers didn't get the health 'n' fitness message, it brings us another article warning of the "hidden dangers" of what most people consider healthy foods: "Salads . . . fish & nuts can turn deadly." Better stick with an all-popcorn diet if you want to live.
In a final word of helpful advice, the Examiner tells readers, "Don't lose sleep over your exploding head!" A new medical study apparently claims that almost one in seven Americans are woken from sleep by imagined sounds of their head exploding. "Your head is in no danger," adds the rag. Well, that's reassuring, coming from the medical experts at the Examiner.
Onwards and downwards . . .