World War III has broken out, and though the lamestream media have clearly missed this epoch-shattering event, the 'National Enquirer' brings it exclusively to their readers – squeezed into a small corner of the front page, naturally edged out by the far more important story: "Hefner Celebrity Blackmail Scandal Explodes! Sex! Drugs! Cheating! Playboy Mansion's Hidden Cameras caught all the action!"
Because who cares about the Third World War when Hugh Hefner might have made secret celebrity sex tapes?
But did he?
"Every place had microphones and little cameras," says Stefan Tetenbaum, Hefner's valet from 1978 to 1981. "Hefner taped everything in his bedroom, and many men – stars and athletes – came into the bedroom and had sex with these girls . . . Can you imagine what power he had over these men?"
But Hefner's "girlfriends" all claim that the only person Hef filmed having sex was himself. And would the stars have trekked to the Playboy mansion for decades if he had a reputation for blackmailing anyone caught in a compromising situation?
For 'Enquirer' readers more interested in geopolitics than what went on in the Playboy Mansion grotto, the rag has an important question as World War III rages: "Will the US Win?"
Absolutely, says the gung-ho 'Enquirer,' bruising to poke the Russian bear.
"America will easily drive Russia back in a conventional war," says former Army intelligence officer Morgan Lorette, perhaps overlooking the minor detail that Russia's military might is massed in Russia, while America's armaments are mostly in the United States where they're unlikely to push back much of anything. And why should Russia or China feel restricted to conventional warfare?
Just in case you missed WWIII breaking out, it apparently happened when Russia sent "special-ops warriors" into the Ukraine, and China sent 39 warplanes into Taiwan's airspace.
"Harry Begs Queen: Let Us Come Home!"
Prince Harry's "California Dream is Nightmare!" Naturally it's all Duchess Meghan's fault as she "chases her Hollywood dreams." Harry is supposedly begging the Queen and Prince Charles to let him back into the UK, as if he's been exiled – which he hasn't. He can get on a plane and fly home any time he wants.
"Arnold Lucky To Be Alive!"
Schwarzenegger was involved in a four-car crash, in which his SUV – built like a tank, and just as big – crushed other cars beneath its wheels. Arnold isn't lucky to be alive. He emerged without a scratch, because he was driving the most intimidating, invulnerable vehicle on the road.
"Adele Flees Vegas On Verge of Crackup! Pals fear singer is a ticking time bomb."
Any time a celebrity breaks down in tears, like clockwork the 'Enquirer' finds "pals who fear" that they're having a mental breakdown. This time it's Adele, who tearfully cancelled her planned Las Vegas residency the day before it was to open. The 'Enquirer' quotes only one unnamed "friend," who says in fluent tabloidese: "Her mental health issues were always a ticking time bomb, and now her world is crumbling around her. I don't know if she can recover."
How is it that tabloid sources all speak as though they learned English by watching 'TMZ' and 'Inside Edition'?
"Brain Damage Fears For Aging Brady!"
There are brain damage fears for any long-time NFL professional: it comes with the territory, and Tom Brady is no different, though there's absolutely no reason to believe that he is showing any signs of mental impairment from two decades on the gridiron.
"Bad News Bears!"
There's a litany of alliteration in the 'Enquirer' report on increased attacks by bears.
"Bloodthirsty bears" and "brutal bruins" are staging "ambush attacks" and "rampaging across the country" – look outside your window, you might see one! – as they "claw their way back from the brink of extinction!"
Or could it be that human development increasingly intrudes on bear habitat? There were six – six!! – bear attacks in America in 2021. Meanwhile an average of 62 Americans die each year from bee stings – perhaps because we're pushing the belicose brawling buzzing beasts toward extinction too.
"Andrew's Legal Wormhole!"
Prince Andrew has filed legal papers denying all the "sexual assault and battery" charges leveled against him by Jeffrey Epstein's former sex slave Virginia Giuffre. Fine – but why is that a "wormhole"? Does his legal defense rely on testimony from a breach in the space-time continuum? Or is vermiculture Andrew's best bet for worming his way out of legal trouble?
Like a heavyweight boxing match billboard, the 'Globe' cover is dominated by the Fight of the Century: "Hillary vs Trump – 2024 Rematch!"
What are they smoking over at the 'Globe'? Biden has indicated he's going to run for reelection in 2024, Kamala Harris would be a natural front-runner if Biden decided to step down, and Hillary is toxic even within her own party. And there's no certainty that Trump could secure the Republican nomination.
Certainly, Biden its't looking his best. As the 'Globe' puts its so eloquently: "Old rivals convinced Prez is dead meat!"
"Arnold Cheats Death!"
Schwarzenegger is only lucky he didn't kill anyone else, crushed beneath his behemoth SUV.
"Bobby Kennedy Marriage on the Rocks!"
Actress Cheryl Hines publicly disagreed with husband RFK Jr's over-the-top comment comparing mask mandates to Nazi oppression. Certainly the couple have exchanged some heated words on the subject, but she knows who she's married to, and his opinions won't come as a surprise to her.
"Winter Olympics Spy Ring Exposed!"
China has allegedly been caught plotting "an evil scheme to bribe judges, snare innocent athletes in so-called 'sex honeytraps' and even cripple competitors with invisible microwave beams" so that their nation "wins the most gold medals and humiliates America," according to unnamed sources.
Bribing judges is a perilous game risking exposure, and injuring competitors with microwaves seems so complicated when a little salmonella in their food or a dose of coronavirus would do the trick. But honeytraps? Those might work when compromising spies with blackmail material, but for most Olympic athletes that would just be giving them free sex without offering any leverage for blackmail. Who makes this stuff up?
"Jennifer Lopez in Love!" dominates the cover.
She's happily reunited with Ben Affleck, enjoying life, and says: "I honestly believe that love rules all." Easy to say when you're paid $20 million a movie.
"Are Brad Pitt & Lykke Li More Than Friends?"
This follows Betteridge's Law of Headlines: For any headline that ends with a question mark, the answer is invariably: No.
It's almost Valentine's Day, so 'People' declares this week its "Love Issue," starting with J. Lo & Ben Affleck, and continuing with celebrity couples Lisa Rinna & Harry Hamlin, Nate Berkus & Jeremiah Brent, Allison Holder & Stephen 'Twitch' Boss (stop me if these names are sliding down low on the celebrity recognition scale), non-Hollywood civilians who have romantic tales to tell, and "A Cancer-Stricken Mum's Wish: Date My Daughter."
Of course there's Rhianna & A$AP Rocky's "baby joy," and "Puppy Love!" which tells of a Moonies-style mass wedding for dogs in Villa Park, Illinois.
Ben Affleck's ex Jennifer Garner is this week's cover girl with the story: "A Ring For Jen!"
Garner is allegedly "racing ex Ben & J. Lo to the altar." Because celebrities see their love lives as a competition, naturally.
Thankfully we have the crack investigative team at 'Us Weekly' to tell us that Katy Perry wore it best (and still looks like she's wearing a pair of pink satin drapes), that Alyssa Milano confesses "an unhealthy obsession with houseplants" (though she doesn't elaborate on what scandalous activities she might engage in with them), and that the stars are just like us: they take out the trash, go shopping, and eat frozen yogurt. Insightful, as ever.
Onwards and downwards . . .