Thursday, September 3, 2015

Checking in with Entertainment Weekly...

"Entertainment Weekly"  made a major design change recently, and if  you guessed it involved adding more pictures and removing pesky words, you hit The Bullseye (Apologies to the mostly lame back page feature of the same name).

The mag actually has run some cool features lately, such as an oral history of M. Night Shyamalan's "Unbreakable." That one's worth checking out; it's an insightful look at an underappreciated film that offers a much different take on superheroes.

There's still a lot of junk in each issue, of course, like the repository for cheap gags that is "The Bullseye" (Hey, you're so intent on pushing Twitter, given that you're publishing all the writers' handles as part of their bylines, so why not save that material for your feed?), and the ever-annoying "Must List."

The "Must List" is a rundown of 10 things the magazine wants to promote/hype with excited blurbs, and for some reason, it's now spread out over 3 pages. The content is essentially the same, but now there are more pics, and the numbers are really big.

Here's what stands out the most to me: In the issue that offers a wrap-up of Comic Con, "EW" devotes 8 pages to pictures of castmembers of high-profile projects announced or promoted there. That's not a bad idea, as I would certainly enjoy seeing some exclusive pics from the set of "Star Wars" or "The Hateful Eight." That's not what these pictures are. They are staged shots from their "suite at the Hard Rock Hotel."  So in other words, we get a bunch of lame pics of actors and actresses standing in front of blue backdrops while pretending they're having a great time.

I'd say, "Pass," but in truth I already read the article. I'm not expecting "The New York Review of Books" here, but I think "Entertainment Weekly" can do better than that kind of ill-conceived spread.

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