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Paper Monitor

11:40 UK time, Tuesday, 8 April 2008

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

With the Diana inquest verdict in, Paper Monitor's instant response is to turn to that great organ of conspiracy theory – the Daily Express. For perhaps two years the Express has trumpeted the line of Mohamed Al Fayed that Diana had been murdered. With the jury finding nothing of the sort, does the Express hold its hands up and admit it was wrong? No chance. Instead, it manages to twist the unlawful killing verdict to its advantage – "DIANA WAS UNLAWFULLY KILLED", speculating that the finding leaves the way clear for Mr Al Fayed to pursue a private prosecution against the paparazzi in France.

There's a sympathetic hearing for Mr Al Fayed inside, with a piece headlined: "Forgotten grief of a father".
mail_diana203.jpg
No such sentiments in the Daily Mail, where Diana obsessives of a different stripe can read about why "this foul mouthed bully [no prizes for guessing who its talking about here] should leave Britain and peddle his poison elsewhere".

The following page we're told how the late princess' "most intimate secrets have been cruelly exposed… her dignity torn to shreds" by the process. And, of course, the Mail steadfastly resisted reporting all such details on principle (see pic, above).

With the Olympic torch relay in turmoil, the Sun does its bit to keep the flame burning, providing readers with a cut-out-and-keep Olympic flame that "never goes out". The Mirror, meanwhile, has been doing some digging on the army of track-suited security guards who phalanx the flame on its outings. The men are apparently "highly-trained killers from crack military special forces units".

Aesthetes reeling from the thought that the Chinese secret police could be taking a fashion lead from Vicky Pollard, will be further discomforted by the sight of Mrs Wayne Rooney-to-be ripping off Audrey Hepburn.

As the Magazine has noted previously, La Hepburn's delicate sexuality has earned her a hallowed place in the hearts of discerning men and women. And here comes a brassy WAG trying to assume all those values simply by donning a tiara and diamond necklace. Just you wait Ms McLoughlin… Paper Monitor can almost hear Allison Pearson/Amanda Platell priming their Daily Mail keyboards for some acerbic comment.

Lastly, just time for a game of HDWKIT – How Do We Know It's Tuesday – the sister challenge of How Do We Know It's Monday and How Do We Know It's Thursday, whereby Paper Monitor imagines its memory of the date has been wiped and it sets out to determine what day of the week it is purely from stories press released by weekly publications. Tuesday is Radio Times day – and both the Telegraph and the Sun come up trumps with stories from RT interviews. The former has a history professor saying hoodies date back to medieval times; the latter a confession from TV's Gok Wan that he doesn't like styling men.

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