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Friday, July 27, 2007

THE WEEKLY WORLD NEWS GOES TITS UP AT 28

Special thanks to Daniel S. for alerting me to this.


THE WEEKLY WORLD NEWS, long one of my favorite publications, is giving up the ghost next week after twenty years of chronicling real, hard news stories such as Abraham Lincoln's leatherboy frolics in the White House, mad scientists on the loose, interviews with close friends of Superman — yes, dumbass, he's real — miracle diets in which mayonnaise causes you to lose weight and gain eighty IQ points, space aliens getting up to all kinds of shit, the never-ending antics of good ol' Bigfoot (SEE ABOVE), and my personal favorite: an article sporting the headline "I WAS RAPED BY SNOWMAN," one woman's true account of her horrifying violation at the hands (sticks?) of a rapist cobbled together from frozen precipitation, accompanied by a photo of the victim/survivor looking like she'd just beeen sucking on a lemon.

And no elegy for this sterling journalistic organ would be complete without mention of the ubiquitous and always fascinating Bat Boy, a subterranean mutant whose thrilling — and 100% true — exploits kept us on the edge of our seats and sold millions of papers.



Bat Boy's story so moved a generation that it was translated to Off-Broadway and London's West End as BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL in 1997, a rousing night of theater that I am deeply saddened to have missed.


The paper's columnists were crafters of hard-hitting op-ed pieces that focused on the myriad of issues plaguing our great nation; arch-conservative Ed Anger's MY AMERICA showed no mercy to the limp-wristed pinkos, whiny anti-war crybabies and rap music-listeners who piss all over homespun values on a daily basis, while DEAR DOTTIE offered a more vitriolic and honest dose of bracing advice for all brave enough to seek it. And what other publication would have had the insight to grant a Q & A forum to a quadruped, namely Lester the Typing Horse?


I will greatly miss THE WEEKLY WORLD NEWS, as it was not only a firebrand of investigative journalism, but also the one publication I would purchase on a whim while in line at the Key Food express aisle, waiting to purchase a box of Chicken In A Biskit snack crackers and its required accessory, a can of bacon-and-onion-flavored aerosol "cheez."


Well, that and SOAP OPERA DIGEST. So until the ass-draggers over at THE NEW YORK TIMES get their shit together and start covering Bigfoot's bid for the Oval Office, the light of American journalism will burn just a tad dimmer.


Here's the tragic lowdon from Reuters-

Weekly World News to close (aliens not blamed!)
Tue Jul 24, 2007 5:53PM EDT
By Jane Sutton

MIAMI (Reuters) - Publisher American Media Inc. said on Tuesday it will stop printing the Weekly World News, which for 28 years gleefully chronicled the exploits of alien babies, animal-human hybrids and dead celebrities.

The company said in a brief statement it would end the print version of the tabloid newspaper next month but would maintain the online version (www.weeklyworldnews.com).

"Due to the challenges in the retail and wholesale magazine marketplace that have impacted the newsstand, American Media, Inc. today announced it will close the print version of the Weekly World News, effective with the August 27 issue. Weekly World News was AMI's smallest weekly publication," the company said in a statement e-mailed to Reuters.

Spokesman Richard Valvo declined further comment.

American Media is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, and is best known as the publisher of the National Enquirer. The company announced last month it was exploring the sale of five of its 16 magazines as part of a strategy to focus on celebrity weeklies and lifestyle magazines.

The Weekly World News, which boasted it was "The World's Only Reliable Newspaper," reveled in shocking and almost always exclusive reports about extra-terrestrials, ghosts, scoundrels and scientific discoveries, such as the cure for lovesickness found on the walls of an ancient Mexican monument.

Bat Boy, the half-bat, half-human child found in a cave, was a regular feature. After the September 11 attacks, the tabloid reported he had been enlisted in the hunt for Osama bin Laden because of his special cave-dwelling skills.

The current online version reports that Mother Nature has endorsed Al Gore for president and other recent headlines include: "Man bothered by alien telemarketers" and "Dentist uses UFO metal in patient's tooth"

AMI reported a $160 million net loss for 2006 and is struggling with $1 billion of debt and plummeting circulation. It said in an SEC filing in March that sales of the Weekly World News dropped to 83,000 in 2006 from 153,000 in 2004, while circulation of the National Enquirer fell to 802,000 in 2006 from 1.2 million in 2004.

The company has no publicly traded stock but its bonds are publicly traded.


Death may have been cured, but not in the case of "the World's Only Reliable Newspaper." Yer Bunche weeps.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

we all weep with bunche.
this is indeed a sad day.
suz

--=MR.JOE=-- said...

The "Miracle Baby made from spare parts" headline is fucking killing me!

Bunche you got me laughing my ass off!

--=MR.JOE=--

Laser Rocket Arm said...

My all-time favorite WWN headline was SATAN LIVES IN MY MICROWAVE. The people who worked there must have had so much fun. RIP, WWN.

Nicole said...

Used to be you could roll up a copy of the WWN,tie a shiny red ribbon around it and call it a really great birthday present. Now what the fuck am I gonna do?
Colie V.