A Blunt Assessment

British Pop Singer Will Be International Guest Editor for Metro

By Published on .

James Blunt
If you were ever a child and watched television, then you're probably familiar with the "principal for a day" plotline; it's a trope dragged out by every show from "Our Miss Brooks" to "Saved by the Bell" wherein the class clown/rebel gets to sit behind the big oak desk and learn a lesson about responsibility by screwing everything up. In the event this lesson still hasn't sunk in, the international free daily Metro is making James Blunt its global guest editor for the Nov. 17 issue, and you can only imagine what kind of shenanigans he's gonna get into!

Sure, the stakes are low -- choosing which rewritten wire story to run on the cover and concocting a punny headline would be easy enough for Kid Rock to handle -- and Bono has played the same part before, but shouldn't the façade of Blunt being trusted as a media gatekeeper be almost as frightening as a Sarah Palin presidency? This is apparently "the first time that the world's largest newspaper has had a famous artist at the helm of its global edition." Ummm ... progress? Sadness.

Deeply symbolic implications aside, Metro boasts a circulation of 20 million across the 150 cities where it's printed, which is an impressive reach for any one-day event. However, because the UK edition is owned by a different company, Blunt's countrymen will be spared from punishment that day. He's also somehow involved in a feature about Medecins Sans Frontieres, which we can only suppose is intended to make us shy away from snark when describing the affair, although, as with the editor gig, we find the idea of Blunt doing any sort of reporting work to be mildly horrifying. In fact, even a fluffy opinion piece by the guy who sings "Beautiful" gives us a mild shiver.

In the release, he offers up this gleeful cover letter introduction:
"I have long been fascinated by the media and am excited to have the chance to go behind the scenes at Metro and experience things from the other side. With so much going on in the world right now, I am looking forward to editing a newspaper, raising the profile of subjects close to my heart and hopefully have a little fun along the way. I might even give myself a good review."
Har har. But let's add another layer of fudge to this you-know-what sundae: One of his fans will be able to win a chance to join him as his deputy editor. Don't bother sending writing samples, kids.

It may be bad for the rest of us -- particularly those with journalism degrees and/or low tolerance for soporific radio bile -- but Atlantic Records should make out pretty well in the deal, which will be advertised during the month beforehand in print, radio and a dedicated microsite. Blunt's new single "Love, Love, Love" will be dropping Nov. 20, and the video will be played on Metro's home page when the issue comes out. So he may have scored a high-profile coup, but then again, history doesn't bode well for him:



[Guardian, Press Release]
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