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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I confess to being a mark for Vanity Fair. It's my Grandmother's annual christmass gift to me, and I usually find it a monthly entertaining read. What I like about it is the variety of topics and the length given to the articles.

Here's this month lost of articles and columns, with the online description of them:


The war in Iraq is a fiasco—just ask the neoconservatives who pushed America into it. In exclusive interviews with Richard Perle, Kenneth Adelman, David Frum, and others, David Rose gets an earful of wouldas, couldas, and shouldas. Photographs by Nigel Parry.

With his Chicago screenplay, Bill Condon turned one hit musical into an Oscar-winning movie. Now he's filmed Dreamgirls, with Beyoncé Knowles, Jamie Foxx, and Eddie Murphy. Peter Biskind has the scoop. Photographs by Mark Seliger.

Once, Mark Foley was an ambitious young Democrat, testing the waters in Palm Beach's gay community. Switching to the G.O.P. eased his path to Congress, but it also pushed him deep into the closet—until his e-mails to under-age former pages hit the news. Gail Sheehy and Judy Bachrach expose what Foley's party wanted hidden.

Writing about his dysfunctional childhood helped Augusten Burroughs heal—and get rich. But the foster family he excoriated is now suing for libel. Meeting the real-life "Finches," Buzz Bissinger wonders who traumatized whom. Photographs by Jonas Karlsson.

At 12, Dakota Fanning is Hollywood's little princess, with a $3 million paycheck and dibs on every girl role in town. As Karl Lagerfeld snaps her fairy tale, she tells Jim Windolf about starring in Charlotte's Web and partying with "Bob"—De Niro, that is.

A deadly storm marooned Peter Halmos and his 158-foot yacht in a Florida wildlife refuge. A year later, the exasperated mogul is still stuck. Bryan Burrough reports from the starboard bow, where Halmos keeps busy filing lawsuits and fending off pirates. Photographs by Cameron Davidson and Nina Bramhall.

With the editorial genius of Harold Hayes and the visual punch of George Lois's covers, Esquire nailed the 60s. Hearing from New Journalism stars such as Tom Wolfe and Gay Talese, Frank DiGiacomo relives the second coming of the American magazine.


Men pride themselves on making women laugh, but the favor is rarely returned. Or so insists Christopher Hitchens, provoking half of humanity as he tries to explain the humor gap.

When Katie Couric made her CBS Evening News debut, viewers flocked—and then fled. James Wolcott advises Her Bubbliness to simmer down.

For 27 years, a violent radical group called November 17 terrorized Athens. Nicholas Gage reveals how a small team of investigators finally cracked the conspiracy, just in time for Greece's Olympic homecoming, in 2004.

You've got the political side with the Neo-Con piece and the Foley piece. You've got two Hollywood Fluff pieces, one on Dreamgirls and the other on Fanning. You've got two related to the publishing world, one on Burroughs' praised book and the other taking a look at Esquire in the 60s. And then you have a wacky piece on a stranded mega yatch in Florida.

In another month they might have a crime/murder article, something on architecture, something on mountain top removal coal mining in West Virgina, on mountain climbing... just about anything. Again, with deeper and longer articles than you'll in daily papers (or web based new pieces) and the weekly magazine. I really enjoy taking it when going out for a sitdown meal and having a number of articles that I can really sink my teeth into while sinking my teeth into some tasty food. :)

The Neo-Con and Foley articles are an example of that.

The Foley one is probably the best I've seen on the background to the story, and with some insight into what happened as the story broke. If course with lead time it doesn't have the story on the report coming out this week.

The Neo-Con piece is interesting. To me, the piece essentially lets them speak their new CYA positions for the record rather than heavily confronting them on it. If one has read more on these guys in books like Fiasco and others, you tend to know that it's CYA of putting all the blame on others in the Admin rather than any real and sustained addmission that their original premises were delusional _and_ had an impact in causing many of the problems. To a degree, I don't mind that article isn't confronting them. It comes across as more a "get them on the record" piece, where others in a year, five years, ten years, the rest of history can point out where there comments here don't jibe with reality or contradict themselves.

On the other hand, I don't know if VF in running it viewed it that way, or simply loved the lucha-style Rudo vs. Rudo aspect where the Neo-Cons were shitting all over the Administration Cons. Ants and Maggots, if you will.

Anyway, I don't pimp the magazine as always being great, or flawless. Simply that it's a good monthly read on a variety of topics with the articles being given a depth that is refreshing in an era of soundbite writing.

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