The craziest statistic we read this time last year was over 1,000 magazines launched in 2004. Most of them didn’t make it, of course. But we’re still here, a year and change later, and it’s been quite a freakin’ year. Like every other overpaid columnist in every publication in the world, we will now offer you the best of the year in list format.
In June, Maclean’s turned Belinda Stronach and Peter MacKay into the boring Canadian version of Brangelina by Photoshopping an old snapshot to shit, replacing the background of the photo with a white background, making it look as though the venerable mag had scored an interview with the very public recent exes. Not to mention gotten them in the same room, smiling and holding hands. Lies, all lies.
Choking on boredom
We first reported in February Bob Woodward had announced that Deep Throat was dying and wanted to be indentified, but it took until Vanity Fair and a big-ass scoop in June to unmask the decades-old mystery of the secret government source who helped Woodward and Carl Bernstein bring down the Nixon adminstration. We hoped in our heart of hearts that it was long-rumoured Diane Sawyer, but instead it was some ex-FBI dude named Mark Felt. Well. That was anti-climactic.
In late March we pleaded for an end to Desperate Housewives’ domination of finer newsstands everywhere, peaking with Entertainment Weekly’s five collectible covers. “The show could fall apart at any time — creator Marc Cherry has admitted he’s already ended up resolving more storylines than he meant to,” we warned. “This desperate bandwagon jumping is going to backfire come second season. Don’t believe me? How’s The OC doing this year?” We don’t mind pointing out when we’re right — the viewing numbers haven’t dropped but the quality has. Second-season House- wives commits a worse crime than being merely bad — it’s fucking boring.
The Tom Cruise cruise began in psychotic earnest at the beginning of summer, peaking conveniently with the release of War of the Worlds, then rising to new heights of terror with the announcement of Katie Holmes’ pregnancy, which makes us weep for humanity (and the mother of the child who Cruise and Holmes will inevitably pass off as their own, if Holmes’ extreme belly-size changes are any tip-off). But it did bring the entry of “publisister” into the pop lexicon, thanks to us and our internet boyfriend Mark Lisanti, aka Defamer. Tired of reading statements from Cruise’s “publisist/sister” Lee Anne DeVette, we offered Defamer the much cleaner “publisister” which soon found its way into Radar, which has just folded for a second time, along with the use of the word, since Cruise replaced his publisister with a real flack a couple of months ago.
The pitiful end of Miller time
Our biggest regret of the year comes via a series of Anablogs, where we threw our support behind Judith Miller, the New York Times reporter who went to jail after refusing to name a source in the case of a US government official outing the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame. Boy, did we bet on the wrong horse — turns out Judy was, if not in the pocket of, at least standing near the pants of the White House and writing about it as unbiased fact. She got out of jail in November and promptly resigned from the NYT to the alleged tune of a $1 million book deal. Crikey. Send your favourite issue of any publication this year to Anablog c/o The Coast, 5435 Portland Place, Halifax, B3K 6R7.