I’m sure even after two dazzling days on newsstands and subway platform trash cans everywhere, it already seems rote to mock this Village Voice cover, featuring American Idol (third? fourth-place?) contestant Constantine Maroulis. So unexpected…so populist…so brave…zzzzzzzzzzz.
In any case, the fact that this “brazenly uncouth” lead story insidiously coincides with this week’s sudden firing of film editor Dennis Lim and longtime staff writer Michael Atkinson (and God knows how many more) in the wake of the twin takeovers of ex-New York Sunner David Blum as editor-in-chief and New Times, Inc. syndicate as devious corporate puppet master, well, it just wipes that chuckle off your fuckin’ face, doesn’t it?
Surely, lame Voice cover stories have been de rigeur for quite some time, but the film section, always seemed somehow untouchable, regardless of our occasional differences of opinion. Dennis Lim’s position as editor allowed him to keep a firm (needed) grip on a New York film culture that could easily, with one pinky-nudge, descend into Little Miss Sunshine-y oblivion, and never return. Who knows what will happen here, and maybe we shouldn’t be so alarmist (like, say, a Village Voice cover), but these voices will undoubtedly be missed. For the time being, we still have Hoberman, clinging like a barnacle to this sinking ship’s hull. For now, we salute Misters Lim and Atkinson on their untimely departures for all their years of good work….I know it must be rough, guys, but take a good hard look at that Idol dude’s weak chin and disturbingly manicured chest hair, screaming out at you from the rag’s new corporate bowels. Time for greener pastures, I guess.