July 20, 2005
Fug the Cover: Entertainment Weekly
Somebody must really hate Scarlett Johansson:
Don't get me wrong -- this person clearly isn't enamored of Ewan McGregor, either, because it's not his best showing. He looks like an orderly who is really not that thrilled about having to clean your bedpan, because he just had to give Old Woman McGillicuddy a sponge bath and it was nearly the putrid death of him, but he's going to breathe through his mouth the whole time and smile, by gum, because it's his job not to be disgusted by other people's waste matter.
But this photo of Scarlett Johansson makes her look like a stoned ogre. Her eyes seem to veer off in different directions. Her facial expression is stiff and forced. And it's the worst angle on her nose. Can this really have been the best frame of the lot? Or was someone with a ScarJo vendetta going through the proofs? Is this really the type of cover art that would make everyone at the magazine say, "Yes. We have done it. This is the one," if they didn't secretly hate ScarJo with every fiber of their beings? Has EW hired Soon-Yi? Are the Scientologists getting revenge against her for turning down the Tom Cruise contract -- er, I mean, for not being alluring enough that he would fall in love with her on-sight?
I certainly hope, for The Island's sake, that the sexy side of sci-fi it purports to reveal is not properly illustrated by this cover. They have as much chemistry as hand soap and pudding. She looks like she is refusing to touch him; he looks like he just realized he forgot to Lysol her belly before putting his hand on it, but he's gritting his teeth and bearing it for the time being. Who at Entertainment Weekly is having such bad sex lately that this is their idea of erotic titillation? Soon-Yi, is it you again? Have you become a photo terrorist?
Adding insult to injury is the shot of Peeping Johnny on the top right corner, all Wonkafied and Wintour-esque.
I just don't understand. If I didn't subscribe, I wouldn't buy this issue -- as it was, it arrived unbidden, so I had to see it sitting on my coffee table without having been sufficiently prepped for the horror. The resulting yawp was one of terror and betrayal.
My only consolation comes in imagining that Ewan and Scarlett's twee rubber bracelets are actually stamped with a slogan that encourages people to stop buying twee rubber bracelets.