Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Another day on Planet Tabloid

It's always a good day when life imitates Com5080. Today's discussion gets us through the tabloid age, which (of course) provides a chance to recall the Graphic's visual coverage of Caruso greeting Valentino in Heaven and other journalistic highlights of the previous century.

The composograph tradition is alive and well. On what planet but the New York Post could you find the governor's head Photoshopped onto a still from a 45-year-old TV show, along with this helpful lede:

Need more proof Albany’s so-called lawmakers are really space cadets? Gov. Paterson, fed up as do-nothing legislators bickered through a budget summit yesterday, groaned, “Oh, Scotty, beam me up,” a play on the classic “Star Trek” line uttered by Capt. Kirk to his engineer, Scotty (right).*

Why it's a "shriek" in the hed but a "groan" in the lede is a mystery. But if the copydesk at the Post would like a free hint: You know, you really could use a big old Donner Party comma** in a phrase like "Beam me up Scotty." This is "Star Trek," not "Fantastic Voyage."

* The handy directional cue appears on the print page, though it isn't in the online lede.
** That's the comma of direct address that distinguishes "Let's eat, kids" from "Let's eat kids." Prof. Fuhlhage was the first to put it in question form: Donner Party or dinner party?.

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Anonymous raYb said...

Actually, Capt. James Tiberius Kirk never really said "Beam me up, Scotty." It was always "Scotty, three to beam up" or some permutation thereof. It's one of those "play it again, Sam" things that wasn't said.

11:18 PM, May 19, 2010  

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