15
Jan
09

Media matters and Kerry’s weight

I was browsing around the newsagents in Superquinn today when I noticed that Kerry Katona had made the front pages of a number of publications. Both OK and Star magazine had cover stories on Kerry’s fabulous weight loss. The Daily Mirror had a somewhat different Kerry angle, reporting that she has evicted her own mother from her home in order to pay off a massive tax debt.

Now I’m not in the business of pointing and laughing at celebrities for having breakdowns in a very public way (see here for more evidence of Charlie Brooker being right about everything). Besides, if we slap a hate-figure label on Kerry we effectively assume a goodie tag on Brian McFadden, and that simply wont do. Nonetheless, the weight issue is worth discussing for one reason. Star magazine declared that Kerry has lost four stone. OK topped this by claiming it was six. Plastered on the two magazine, in big, bold typeface for all to see, are two very different figures (numbers-wise, I mean).

Now if I were a cynical man I might reach the conclusion that celebrity magazines are less than reputable; that they’re just making it all up. Further inspection might discount this explaination, however. Both OK and Star are owned by Northern and Shell Media Publications, so surely two arms of the one company would want to liaise with each other to avoid such embarrassing discrepancies. Even celebrity magazines wouldn’t be so feckless with the truth, right?

No, the answer to this conundrum lies as I see it with deadlines. This particular issue of Star, you see, was dated January 19, whereas OK was dated the 20th. So, obviously, in the 24 hours that lies between each magazine’s deadline Ms Katona went and lost a further two stone. What a trooper.

In a related story, my 15 year old sister lost over a stone while spending Christmas in the States. As she is by no means over-weight, my aunts – with whom she was staying – fretted that she might be anorexic. The truth, happily, is that my sister simply couldn’t stomach the artificial-tasting food across the pond (which I can understand). Her eating habits are fine. Still, with the dick-swinging reporting of celebrities and their weight, would it be any surprise if my sister were anorexic.

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