TV: Paper Giants 2—Modern Day Magazine Wars.

paper giants magazine wars

ABC’s two-part sequel to 2011’s Ita Buttrose biopic, Paper Giants 2: Magazine Wars, culminated last night with the death of Nene King’s husband, Princess Di, and the integrity of gossip magazines.

It’s interesting that the miniseries that charts the rise and rise of Woman’s Day under the leadership of King to overtake New Idea as the premier women’s weekly magazine in Australia aired at the time of all the hullaballoo surrounding the rights to publish pictures from Jennifer Hawkins’ Bali wedding.

For those who haven’t been keeping score, Bauer Media’s Woman’s Day paid upwards of $300,000 to publish exclusive pictures from the former Miss Universe’s wedding to long-time beau Jake Wall, but not before Channel 7, and their associated print platform, Who magazine, put paparazzi pics from a hovering helicopter into the public domain. Sounds like a storyline from the next instalment of Paper Giants

Magazine Wars addresses the pursuit by the paparazzi for the hottest pics during the height of the public’s obsession with the royals, Squidgygate, Camillagate and, of course, Princess Diana’s death, which was arguably caused by the paps. This is juxtaposed with the diving accident death of King’s husband, Pat, whose body has never been found, and King suddenly found herself on the pages of the magazines instead of dictating what was on them. While King and boss Kerry Packer stare at the word “Killer” spray-painted in red on the roller door to ACP’s parking garage and the Woman’s Day office gets threatening phone calls, King laments that she’s only giving the people what they want, before the closing credits roll against a backdrop of Paris Hilton in jail, Anna Nicole Smith’s tragic downfall and Kim Kardashian’s bikini body.

Woman’s Day and its magazine war with New Idea may have been partly responsible for Australia’s growing obsession with celebrity culture, but King’s right: magazine circulation may be dwindling currently, but for a while there gossip rags were modern culture’s guilty pleasure du jour, and that obsession has transferred online to TMZ, Perez Hilton and the like. Princess Di and her ilk may have tried to escape the paparazzi, but in this day and age, they’re an accepted part and parcel of being in the public eye.

Related: Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo Review.

Elsewhere: [MamaMia] Woman’s Day Paid More Than $300,000 for Jennifer Hawkins’ Wedding Shots. Then This Happened…

On the (Rest of the) Net.

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Are Princess Diana and Rihanna one in the same? Camille Paglia misguidedly seems to think so. [The Sunday Times]

Clementine Ford interviews Anne Summers as part of Daily Life‘s first birthday celebrations. Brilliant!

The face of porn (SFW). [Jon Millward]

Speaking of porn, is James Deen harmful to his young female fans? [Daily Life]

Lena Dunham isn’t “brave”. [Vulture]

How many models of colour walked in New York Fashion Week? Not many. [Jezebel]

Why have so many “contestants” on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew died? [Jezebel]

Downton Abbey VS. Girls. [Daily Beast]

Why do we flinch when a woman says she’s beautiful? [Daily Life]

“Is There Such a Thing as ‘Asian Privilege’?” [Daily Life]

Stop the presses: Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus debunked. [The Age]

Reporting Reeva  Steenkamp’s murder at the hands of her Paralympian partner, Oscar Pistorius. [News with Nipples]

“In Defence of Diablo Cody.” [Female Gaze Review]

Kurt Cobain: feminist? [Daily Life]

In the vein of Nice Guys of OKCupid comes the racist guys of OKCupid: Creepy White Guys.

Image via Jezebel.

TV: Gossip Girl Takes Inspiration from Yet More Royals. This Time It’s the Grimaldis.

 

The 100th episode of Gossip Girl brought the much anticipated wedding of Blair Waldorf and Prince Louis Grimaldi, with interference by Chuck, Dan and Georgina thrown in there for good measure.

I didn’t think Blair would actually go ahead with the wedding, but she did, and it provided a chance for the show to channel yet more royals after Blair lost her baby in a car accident à la Princess Diana a few weeks ago and now, taking inspiration from Princess Grace Kelly’s progeny Prince Albert and Princess Charlene’s tear-soaked wedding last year.

The (fictional) fact that Louis is a Grimaldi is not lost on Gossip Girl, who sees Blair as somewhat of a modern day Grace Kelly. Louis tricked her into marrying him after she clearly expressed love for Chuck (Blair is not completely blameless; she “did the right thing” in marrying someone she thought she could “grow into” loving) and will force her to uphold her end of the bargain or risk her family’s bankruptcy in paying her dowry (what century is this again?) if she reneges on the marriage. Could a similar storyline be at play in Prince Albert and Princess Charlene’s real-life marriage?*

*Pure speculation.

Related: Gossip Girl: Blare Channels the Tragic Life of Princess Di & Gossip Culture is to Blame.

Images via International Business Times, Putlocker.

TV: Gossip Girl—Blair Channels the Tragic Life of Princess Di & Gossip Culture is to Blame.

 

Tortured lovers Blair and Chuck decided to run away together despite Blair’s betrothal to Louis and her pregnancy. Chuck tells Blair he’ll love her and her and Louis’ baby, just as the paparazzi chasing the car they’re traveling in forces it off the road. If this isn’t a statement about Princess Diana’s fatal car accident, allegedly at the hands of the paparazzi, I don’t know what is. Hint: expect this to be the catalyst for Serena et al. to try to finally take down Gossip Girl

Also, it’s incredibly convenient that Blair’s involved in a car accident whilst pregnant. I can just see it now: Blair will come out of the accident unscathed, however her inconvenient bun in the oven won’t, allowing her to cut all ties with Louis and run back into the arms of Chuck. Providing he survives, that is…

Related: Life Begins at Love on Gossip Girl.

Image via FanPop.

Books: Caitlin Moran on Princess Culture.

From How to be a Woman by Caitlin Moran:

“The books; the Disney films; the most famous woman in the world being, when I was a child, Princess Diana: whilst there were other role models around, the sheer onslaught of princessalia every girl is subject to wedges its way into the heart, in a quietly pernicious way.

“In the last decade, the post-feminist reaction to princesses has been the creation of ‘alternative’ princesses: the spunky chicks in Shrek and the newer Disney films, who wear trousers, do kung-fu, and save the prince. Possibly a reaction to the life, and then death, of Diana, princesses have had to be reconfigured to acknowledge that we all now know that being a real princess isn’t all about wafting around in a castle, being beautiful and noble. It’s about eating disorders, loneliness, Wham! mix-tapes, shagging around, waging a pitched battle with the royal family, and, eventually, the incredible fascination that you hold over others conspiring to kill you.” [p. 300–301]

Sounds peachy! I certainly don’t envy Kate Middleton.

Related: Poor Pippa.

On the (Rest of the) Net.

 

Porn star Stoya Tweets, “If you think pubic hair on a woman is unnatural or weird, you aren’t mature enough to be touching vaginas.” You go, girl!

Beware hot baths in winter: they can cause heart attacks!

Celebrities and mental illness.

I was absolutely disgusted by Bob Ellis’ take on the ADFA sex scandal on ABC’s The Drum Unleashed, comparing the unconsented filming of a young female cadet during sex to the girls discussing last night’s date on Sex & the City. Here are some choice excerpts:

“Let us imagine the girl agreed to be filmed, and then, afterwards, being mocked for it, and flabbergasted by the number of leering hoons who saw the film, made the complaint. Would that then occasion the sacking of her commanding officer, the court-martial of fifteen or twenty of her fellow recruits, and the bastardising of her lover?

“… She would have been mortified. She would have cursed for months the prurient observers of her bed games. She would have railed at them in the canteen. She would have sobbed on the phone to her mother. She would have attracted some sympathy. She would almost certainly have got over it… And she might… have married the boy.”

“… They, and we, should be careful when we attend too closely to what occurs in a bedroom consensually, and how we punish either participant.

“… Is the young woman, moreover, to be named, and acclaimed, and promoted, and hereafter entrusted with frontline command on some field of battle? Who would trust her in any high army position? Who would be sure she was truthful? Or sound of judgment? Or loyal? Or reliable under fire?”

To end, he makes sure we know that group sex didn’t occur, “as it sometimes does in traveling footballers’ motel rooms”, as if that somehow makes it okay.

Kim Powell writes in response at News with Nipples about Ellis’ assertion that (male) society owns female bodies, as he began the above piece by reminiscing about an old M.A.S.H. episode in which the shower Hot Lips Houlihan is using is lifted by a crane and the menfolk gaze at her naked body.

Girl with a Satchel posts a smashing review of Tina Fey’s Bossypants.

Vintage Gala Darling, circa 2005. Glad to see she hasn’t changed :).

“7 Reasons to Get Excited About the Royal Wedding”… one week later!

In relation, is Princess Catherine doomed to repeat the same fate as Diana? A royal comparison.

Also, “Jessica Rudd shines some perspective on the wedding and the Republic.”

Much to my chagrin, tanning beds are safe… for some things!

Sarah Wilson on private schooling:

“I know parents want to provide the best for their own kids… I don’t know that fancy pools and excursions to Tuscany make for a better education.”

“Things Fat People Are Told”:

“If a fat person defied any of these pronouncements in any way, they spoke of having their lives and experiences denied. They couldn’t really have low blood pressure. They couldn’t really be getting married.

“The hostility fat people experience is extreme. One woman spoke about being on an operating table for a C-section and having a surgeon mock her fat, suggesting they get rid of it while they’ve got her open. Another spoke of sitting in an ambulance while a police officer refused to believe she was raped. Others were told they should be happy to have been sexually assaulted. We heard about how transgender persons were belittled for being too fat to pass. We heard about fat people who were sick and were denied treatment until they lost weight. Fat mothers were told they were selfish for being fat because they would orphan their children. Or that their children would never love them. Or that they’d just ruin their children’s lives so maybe the baby should just die in the womb.”

Lisa Simpson would “totally be a Jezebel reader if she were human.”

Images via Jezebel.