Prince Harry is to blame for pretty much everything, even when he's not involved, as far as the tabloids are concerned.
That's certainly the case with this week's 'Enquirer' cover story: "Prince Charles Bribe Scandal Explodes! New Palace Nightmare. Vengeful Harry squeals."
Yes, it was allegedly "Charles' vindictive son Harry" who dumped his dad in deep doo-doo by revealing to investigators that Charles was "caught taking suitcase full of cash!" along with paper bags stuffed with unmarked bills from a Qatari sheikh.
Harry "blew the whistle" on his dad "after his $10 million royal inheritance was ended!" claims the rag.
Of course, there is zero evidence implicating Harry as the source of the inquiry into Charles' financial improprieties, or even the suggestion that Harry would have been aware of his father's cash transactions. Why would he be?
Charles insists that the payments from the controversial sheikh, though unusual in their form of dodgy delivery, were all processed legally as donations to his charity, and were absolutely not bribes, though he is admittedly under investigation for a separate instance of alleged influence peddling for cash.
Next time Prince Charles wants paper bags stuffed with cash delivered to him perhaps he should use Doordash.
"Epstein Madam's Grim Death Sentence!"
No, billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein's right-hand woman Ghislaine Maxwell was only sentenced to 20 years behind bars for sex trafficking, not given the death penalty. But since she is 60 years old the 'Enquirer' predicts: "Maxwell will die in jail."
Declaring that "There's No Hope For Monster Maxwell!" the mag tells readers "either she'll die from disease, by her own hand or be killed!"
You'd think that would cover all the angles, but it's notable that they omit to mention the very real possibility of alien abduction.
"Bennifer Gang Ain't One Big Happy Family!"
Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez are engaged to wed, but their respective teams of nannies and employees "don't get along," claims the rag, taking a break from its coverage of the Ukraine war and North Korea's plans to ignite WWIII for a long-overdue return to serious journalism.
"Thor Loser Natalie Gets Leg Up On Flabby Arms."
After repeatedly recycling news stories that can be decades old, the 'Enquirer' brings us news from the future. Actress Natalie Portman evidently bulked up adding serious muscle to star in her new movie 'Thor: Love and Thunder,' so the 'Enquirer' preemptively warns: "as the Oscar winner's biceps shrink, she could be left with saggy bingo wings!"
Right, because at the age of 41 she's over the hill and she won't be bothered to work out or maintain a healthy diet, and cannot afford to buy expensive firming creams and treatments.
All credit to the 'Enquirer,' however, for conjuring up the perfect flabby-armed image with the phrase "bingo wings."
Turning politics into a soap opera, the 'Globe' reports on "Mike Pence's Brutal Revenge!"
No, the former Vice President didn't launch a ninja attack on Mar-a-Lago, but now reportedly "trashes Trump for years of humiliation!"
Pence is allegedly wreaking his vengeance on the man who believes he is still the US President "by kicking old boss right in the teeth."
That's a metaphor, however, rather than a factual description.
Pence is allegedly "secretly feeding damning inside information on corruption, money and the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill Coup to criminal investigators to torpedo Trump's planned 2024 presidential run," according to unnamed sources.
But Pence hasn't testified before the House January 6 committee, and has reportedly decided not to cooperate with the investigation. WIth a view to his own political future and a possible run at the White House, Pence can't afford to be seen taking sides against Trump, and he insists that his hands were tied by the law when he refused Trump's demand to reject the electoral votes on January 6.
The tabloids long ago turned on Trump, and now it seems they want to turn Mike Pence into a Charles Bronson-style vigilante.
"Queen Outwits Harry & Meghan!"
The 'Globe boasts a "no-nonsense opinion page" (as opposed to the rag's nonsense-filled news pages) which this week praises the Queen for having "outfoxed" Harry and Meghan by refusing to allow them to film their encounters with her and other members of the Royal Family during their recent visit to the UK, robbing them of the chance to cash in on their Netflix reality TV series at the Queen's expense.
"Hollywood is hard on has-beens," states the 'Globe,' "and the pampered prince and his stuck-up wife are gonna learn that lesson sooner rather than later."
It's uncanny how closely this resembles the New York Times Op-Ed page.
"The Big Chill! J.Lo & Ben's ex can't get along."
One minute it's Ben and Jen's staff who can't get along; now it's Ben's future and ex-wife allegedly at each other's throats..
J.Lo is reportedly "bitchy and disinterested" in dealing with Jennifer Garner. And when Garner drops Ben's kids off at Affleck's new home "J.Lo doesn't even come down to greet her!" according to the magazine.
Oh, the horror.
This week's edition is so filled with tragic stories it should come with free a box of Kleenex and a Valium for traumatised readers.
There are duelling cover stories this week, each vying for space on newsstands:
Vanessa Bennett was only three years old when an intruder killed her parents and left her for dead in 1984, promoting her cover story headline: "True Crime: A Serial Killer Murdered Her Family. 'I Survived a Monster.'"
Scarred physically and mentally, Vanessa tried to end her life as a teen before being diagnosed with bipolar disorder and suffering PTSD. She was homeless, living beneath a bridge when police tracked her killer through DNA evidence.
Having now ditched her heroin habit and living in a home with her third husband, Vanessa says: "I am unbreakable. I am a survivor."
Another survivor is TV's 'Nashville' star Hayden Panetierre, who dominates this week's rival 'People' cover, talking about "her struggle with addiction and an abusive relationship."
She reportedly battled with opiates and alcohol, prompting Ukrainian boxing champion Wladimir Klitschko, the father of her eight-year-old daughter, to leave her.
"He didn't want to be around me," she says. "I didn't want to be around me."
But the stars rarely talk to 'People' mag when they're at rock bottom, so naturally, things are looking up now that she's been to rehab and has won her first Hollywood role in four years in the sixth 'Scream' instalment, saying: "I feel like I have a second chance."
But the sad news keeps on coming: "You Can't Take My Daughter."
Sounding like a made-for-TV movie, Analyn Megison tells how "she stopped her alleged rapist from winning custody" of their daughter.
And then there's America's Got Talent finalist Jackie Evancho revealing her battle with anorexia, and saying: "I'm Sick Of Living Like This."
It's as if 'People' magazine gathered together all its depressing stories and jammed them into one big issue this week to get them out of the way.
Elsewhere in the tabloids . . .
Missing again from the newsstands, it's unclear whether the rag has quit its print edition to go digital as 'Ok!' Magazine did recently, or whether it will try to publish bi-monthly.
Its absence leaves anguished readers wondering who wore it best, and hoping against hope that the stars are still really like us, despite their millions and their gated compounds and their entourages and their personal chefs and private trainers.
"Britney & Sam – Divorcing After 39 Days?"
Another perfect example of Betteridge's law of headlines: If it ends with a question mark the answer is always 'No.'
The rag claims "He's Too Controlling – Just Like Her Dad" – but Spears and Asghari were together for five years before recently tying the knot, so this can't be a revelation, even if it's true.
So what are we to make of the photographs of the newlyweds laughing and smiling on their honeymoon, which appeared in other publications this week? It's all a clever cover-up to hide their split, one imagines.
'Life & Style'
It's that time of year when there's little in the way of stories and the tabloids look for an excuse to run endless photos of scantily-clad celebrities, which gives us this week's cover story: "Stars' Real Diet Secrets!"
Jennifer Aniston, Beyoncé and Kim Kardashian – three celebrities who can all afford personal trainers, personal chefs and costly weight-loss regimens. – all share advice on slimming down.
The chance that any one of them actually spoke to 'Life & Style'? Slim to none.
Onwards and downwards . . .