Melania's Pay-Off and King Charles "master-stroke" in this week's dubious tabloids

'National Enquirer'

"Sex Creep Trump Buys Melania's Silence!" Declares the front page.

Days after being branded a sex offender and fined $5 million in a civil trial, former president Donald Trump allegedly wants to appear happily married for his 2014 run at the White House. Only a week after stablemate 'Globe' reported that Melania was "moving out" in a trial separation, the 'Enquirer' now claims their "$3.2 billion divorce drama" is on hold, after Trump bought her off with a "new deal on his will, prenup & allowance!"

In exchange for Melania's public support, Trump has reportedly given her an improved prenup deal, more spending money, and boosted the inheritance bequeathed to their son Barron, aged 17.

If the story is true, Melania is gambling big on Trump regaining the presidency. If he fails, he risks greater exposure to numerous criminal lawsuits, which could put him behind bars, bringing his empire crumbling down, making it hard for Melania to get any money amid a likely flood of creditors.

"What Her Majesty Really Thought About Meghan."

The Queen privately called Duchess Meghan "evil," an unnamed source told Britain's 'Spectator.'

Apparently this raised eyebrows because it's not the sort of language the Queen typically used. Perhaps it was meant as a compliment?

"New Daddy De Niro Hears Wedding Bells!"

At the age of 79, with the birth of his seventh child by his latest lover, why would he do that?

"Docs Destroyed Meg Ryan's Face!"

The 'Enquirer' thinks she's had too much plastic surgery. The actress's rep calls such stories "completely fabricated."

"Hollywood Horror Show! Strikes may spell end of today's TV!"

With brazen self-interest, the rag tells readers: "It's time to put down the remote and subscribe to The National Enquirer," because "the crippling writers' strike may be the death knell for television as we know it."

Right. We're entering the dawn of a new age of tabloid journalism, rising from the ashes of outmoded television.

"CIA Assassins Took Out JFK!"

A week after claiming that vice present Lyndon B Johnson had President Kennedy killed, the rag quotes Robert Kennedy Jr claiming there is "overwhelming evidence" that the CIA was "involved" in the assassination. RFK Jr is a leading anti-vax campaigner, so he's clearly adept at reasoned argument and weighing the facts.

"Hollywood Braces For Foxx Farewell!"

Actor Jamie Foxx's daughter says he's recovering from a health scare and playing pickleball; the 'Enquirer' says he is "beyond help" as friends prepare their "final goodbyes."

Someone's got it wrong.


"Epstein Dirty Diaries Found!" screams the cover.

The late convicted billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein's diaries allegedly reveal his "A-list inner circle."

But Epstein pals Prince Andrew, Bill Clinton, Donald Trump and Bill Gates are apparently not mentioned in his diaries, which record planned meetings with lesser luminaries such as current CIA chief William Burns, former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, Swiss banking CEO Ariane de Rothschild, and MIT's Noam Chomsky. But there's nothing to suggest that any of them were involved in any of Epstein's sex crimes, or had anything other than business dealings with him. American Symphony Orchestra conductor Leon Botstein, named in the diaries, claims he met Epstein in an unsuccessful fundraising bid.


Or, as the 'Globe' puts it in its headline: "The Worms Under Epstein's Rocks!"

"Tom Cruise Falls Hard For Sexy Shakira!"

They met at the Miami Grand Prix on May 7, which is enough for the 'Globe' to be hearing wedding bells.

"King Hits Meghan Where It Hurts!"

Rather than a swift tolchock to the face, King Charles has allegedly inflicted maximum suffering on Duchess Meghan . . . by making a cameo appearance with Queen Camilla on 'American Idol.' (That's old-school TV, of the sort soon to vanish from the face of the tabloid-dominated Earth.)

"He delivered a very direct message to the Sussexes: Don't mess with me!" says an unnamed "palace source," who must surely have lost his or her mind. "It was a master-stroke of one-upmanship."

As if Meghan would feel threatened because Charles is appearing on television.

"The royal gloves are off," a "senior courtier" supposedly said. "He has taken control and is showing his rebel son and daughter-in-law who's boss."

Do 'Globe' readers seriously believe this is how courtiers talk? 'Globe' reporters clearly think so.

"Beyoncé Hubby Dogged For Paternity Test."

A 30-year-old Jersey man claims to be Jay Z's love child, and is seeking a paternity test. The case has already been rejected by the New Jersey Supreme Court, and another man is named as father on the claimant's birth certificate. It's hard to imagine why Jay-Z won't agree to a paternity test.

"Is This Ancient Statue Proof of Time Travel?"

The 'Globe' displays a photo of an ancient Greek funerary relief from the Getty Museum in California, which "appears to show woman using laptop computer."

Or, as the Getty puts it: "a woman reaches out to lift the lid of a shallow box held by an attendant."

Someone's got it wrong.


"What Really happened to Anna Nicole Smith?" asks its cover story.

More than 16 years after the model's drug overdose death, a new documentary tells the same story we've always heard, but also questions whether her childhood was quite as traumatic as she had claimed.

Her friend and former lover, Missy Byrum, states bluntly: "She made a lot of stuff up." Smith allegedly had a moderately happy childhood, but appropriated Byrum's own tales of childhood abuse as her own.

Byrum, a fellow stripper who claims she lived with and married Smith, says she walked away when Smith's drug habit became overwhelming: "She needed more love than any one human being could give her."

"Halle Bailey's Big Splash!"

The star puts a "fresh spin" on Disney princess 'The Little Mermaid.' "Fresh spin" meaning she's Black. It's not as if her Ariel is a misunderstood trans mermaid with body dysmorphia hailing from the wrong side of the reef.

"Sting – Songs of My Life."

The 71-year-old rocker reveals what songs meant to him when he wrote them. 'Every Breath You Take' "could be sinister, or it could be quite warm and sweet and nice . . . Whatever your interpretation is is perfectly valid," he says. Yes, that song played at so many weddings is about a possessive stalker; Sting's just too polite to say.

'Us Weekly'

'The Little Mermaid" is this week's cover girl beneath the headline: "Halle Bailey Makes a Splash."

The aquatic star talks about fame and overcoming racism in the Disney role.

"Ariel helped me find my voice," she says. Being cast as the lead in a Disney movie will also do that to you.

Thankfully we have the crack investigative team at 'Us Weekly' to tell us that Rachel Weisz wore it best, that David Hasselhoff is "dying to go to China because I want to see if they'd recognize me" – apparently said without any trace of irony, or any semblance of self-awareness – and that the stars are just like us: they eat junk food at sports games, paradoxically read the ingredient labels on food packages, and ride the subway. Scintillating, as ever.

Onwards and downwards . . .