This time last year no one would have guessed that â€œJon & Kate Plus 8â€™sâ€ Jon and Kate Gosselin and their brood would be every bit as cover worthy â€” if not more â€” than Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and their kids.
More than six weeks into the celebrity weekly coverage of the familyâ€™s struggles, Gosselin fatigue has yet to fell the nation.
Case in point: According to different industry sources, last weekâ€™s issue of People magazine with Jon opening up about his marriage was one of the yearâ€™s best selling â€” some early estimates have sales hitting the 1.8 million mark. (A rep for People says, â€œWhile itâ€™s too early to give an exact sales number, we can say that it looks to be a very strong seller for People.â€)
During editorial meetings at several weeklies, the decision over who to devote resources to came down to a choice between the Gosselins and the Jolie-Pitts.
â€œWe never thought that thereâ€™d be a reality show couple not just vying for ink in the pages, but selling on par with the Jolie-Pitts,â€ says one editor. â€œI think it speaks to the time weâ€™re in. We want celebrities we can relate to. When Angie has a baby, we can relate to that. When sheâ€™s filming a movie, itâ€™s interesting, but itâ€™s missing that â€˜Iâ€™ve been through that, tooâ€™ connection. Parenting struggles, marriage problems, cute kids? That resonates. People want to know they arenâ€™t alone in what theyâ€™re going through. Itâ€™s part of what makes it the Gosselinâ€™s time.â€
Tiresome as it is, thereâ€™s something fascinating about watching Spencer Pratt flip flop on whether he wants to be part of â€œIâ€™m a Celebrity: Get Me Out of Here.â€
As of press time, Prattâ€™s needle was pointed in the â€œplease, producers, take me backâ€ direction. Hereâ€™s where things stand. According to a source on the ground in Costa Rica, Pratt and his wife Heidi were indeed on a plane headed away from the showâ€™s set Sunday. But they werenâ€™t headed for L.A.; they were headed for the Four Seasons in Guanacaste, Costa Rica.
â€œHeâ€™s killing time, watching the show get coverage without him in it, and wants to come back,â€ said the source.
What are the odds? â€œAs of right now, it doesnâ€™t look like heâ€™s going to be allowed back. But things do seem to change every day.â€
Remember when Oprah Winfrey scandals were less about lies and more about snubs? If you do, you probably remember when Jonathan Franzen, author of â€œThe Corrections,â€ declined Winfreyâ€™s offer to be part of her book club. Well, the infamous author (who later said â€œI feel bad in a public-spirited way,â€ about the dust-up) has his first piece of fiction in four years in this weekâ€™s New Yorker. â€œGood Neighborsâ€ taps into what we are curious about in America right now. Who are our neighbors, what do they think, why do they do what they do? If there was a genre called â€œliterary iteration of reality TV, but one you donâ€™t feel dirty reading,â€ this would qualify (sorry, Franzen, Iâ€™m sure that made you cringe. But itâ€™s a compliment). Either buy the mag, go online and print it out or call it up on your Kindle. This is worth the read.
In the spirit of the 65th anniversary of D-Day, get your hands on the National Geographic Ultimate World War II Collection: Deluxe edition, out on DVD Tuesday. The 425 minutes it will take to watch all the footage pales in comparison to the sacrifices made during World War II.