Let's give praise where it's due: the 'Globe' has one of the great Royal exclusives of all time with its cover story about Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan's newborn son Archie: "Harry's NOT The Daddy! Baby's DNA Test Triggers Palace Crisis."
But just hold on a second – the two-page story inside reveals ". . . new findings show he IS the infant's biological father."
Seriously? Was that ever in question?
This "special report," dubiously emanating from the tabloid's purported team of spies within Harry and Meghan's Frogmore Cottage home on the grounds of Windsor Castle claims that initial DNA tests on Meghan's amniotic fluid found that Harry could not be the father – but further tests confirmed that he was indeed Archie's dad.
I can understand precautionary medical tests and genetic screening being run before a child's birth, but a DNA paternity test?
Even in the improbable event that the story of a mistaken test diagnosis was true, surely the headline should be: "Harry IS The Daddy!" But evidently that doesn't have quite the same ring to it as "Harry's NOT The Daddy!"
At least the 'Globe' is fictionalizing supposedly recent events with this story, whereas its other big stories this week are all rehashed ancient news.
"Gay Elton Jilted Me Days Before Our Wedding!" claims Elton John's former fiancé, revealing her "heartbreak" . . . 49 years ago. Just to prove it's an antique story, the Rocket Man's old flame Linda Hannon is pictured in the 'Globe' holding a copy of Britain's Sunday Mirror newspaper dated February 19, 1984, bearing the headline: "Elton Jilted Me." Worse yet, the Sunday Mirror evidently had a line from Hannon that is better than anything she tells the'Globe': "He was a lousy lover." Or maybe he just wasn't that into her? More up-to date is the 'Globe' "world exclusive" claiming "Caroline Kennedy Battling Incurable Disease!" She was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 1999, and has made no secret of it since then – but a story that's 30 years old evidently counts as breaking news.
Even more current is the 'Globe' story about the 2002 winner of 'American Idol,' Kelly Clarkson, under the headline: "Kelly's Cheating Nightmare!" A Texan "tech wizard" claimed that he was behind millions of robo-calls that propelled Clarkson to the title – an allegation he first made in the tabloids 17 years ago. So long ago that tech wizard Roy McCroy has since died, but that didn't stop the 'Globe' from running a lie detector test that "proves he's telling the truth!" Or would be, if her were alive, and if the story wasn't almost two decades old.
By comparison, this week's 'National Enquirer' at least appears current, if severely factually challenged.
"New Michael Douglas Cancer Horror!" proclaims the rag. How do they know? Have they spoken to his doctor? Seen secret lab test results? No. The actor was spotted sporting a small BandAid across his nose, which for the 'Enquirer' and its team of medical experts can mean only one thing: "he is suffering a potentially fatal cancer recurrence!" Right.
"Lori Loughlin's Mental Breakdown!" screams the 'Enquirer' cover story about the college cheating scandal actress, who is reportedly "popping pain pills," refusing to eat, and suffering insomnia. Even if she is, that hardly qualifies as a "mental breakdown." That's life in Los Angeles.The 'Enquirer' claims that unidentified "friends" fear she's suicidal – because that's what friends are for: wildly speculative paranoia.
The perennial 'Enquirer' obsession with the 1996 slaying of child pageant tot JonBenet Ramsey brings us to this week's offering: "JonBenet Dad's Stunning Confession!" Does he admit to playing a role in the murder? Does he know who killed his daughter? No. John Ramsey's "stunning confession" – "he was thrown into a state of disbelief after learning he was the prime suspect." A father's shock at being considered a suspect in his daughter's death is hardly stunning. It's entirely predictable. And it's not exactly a confession, since he made no secret of his horror at being considered a possible killer. The only shock is that the 'Enquirer' imagines it can get away with such an old story 23 years after the event.
Both 'People' and 'Us' magazines devote their cover story to Prince Harry and Meghan's newborn son Archie, doubtless named after the famed literary cockroach Archy. We can only hope the couple's next child is a girl they name Mehitabel. "It's a Boy!' screams 'People.' Yes, it is, though that's about all they have to say that's new on the subject. 'Us' takes the sociopolitical cultural watershed route with its cover headline: "Changing the Monarchy Forever." Would that be through the racial intermingling of African American and woefully inbred Anglo-European bloodlines? Will Archie be raised cognizant of his African American heritage? Will the newborn force the British Royal Family to confront its shameful past of colonial conquest, subjugation and exploitation? Nothing so radical.
According to 'Us mag, "Harry and Meghan are very keen to live their lives quietly," don't plan on giving Archie a royal title, and hope to "bring up children who know the values of normal things in life." Well that wouldn't change the monarchy whatsoever; it would simply change Archy's life from one of insular privilege and entitlement to one where he knows how much his bodyguards, nannies, servants, equerries, chauffeurs, chefs and maids are paid. Hardly revolutionary.
Fortunately we have the crack investigative team at 'Us' mag to tell us that Lupita Nyong'o wore it best (but honestly even she looked a sight in that Alice + Olivia dress that appeared to be mis-matched off-cuts from the 99 cent bin at a fabric store all stitched together), that rapper Shaggy's "biggest pet peeve is neatness," that 'Project Runway' judge Karlie Kloss carries hot sauce, a giraffe keychain and a face-mask treatment in her Christian Dior tote, and that the stars are just like us: they shop at supermarkets, buy coffee, grab a taxi and rush to catch a flight. Hard to believe, as ever.
Onwards and downwards . . .