Abject Apologies Media Guy is Waiting on ...

C'mon Guys, Some of You Need to Step Up and Say, 'My Bad'

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Perhaps you've heard about how a certain someone who shot a certain hunting buddy of his in the face failed to discuss the accident or apologize for it promptly enough for the media's liking. Yes, in the age of the 24/7 news cycle, everything should happen instantly: the f***-up, the press conference, the "sorry," the redemption.

Which is why I'm shocked and appalled that certain members of the media who have recently participated in their own horrific mishaps have yet to beg forgiveness. Maybe it's slipped their minds? That's why I'm here: to remind them to say "Whoops, my bad!"

(By the way, for the record, like Dick Cheney, I had a beer at lunch before engaging in this little hunting trip. But right now, as I write this column -- in case Brit Hume is wondering -- I'm more or less sober.)

Without further ado, my short list of media people (and media organizations) I'm still waiting for apologies from:

  • Tom Ford, for staging that cringe-inducing, totally un-sexy cover shot of himself for the March Vanity Fair, with poor Scarlett Johansson and Keira Knightley nakedly strewn around him like two freshly rinsed-off and re-inflated blow-up dolls. Does Keira look happy that Tom is nuzzling her ear? No. Does Tom's chest pelt -- on ample display thanks to his daringly unbuttoned shirt -- look like it might run off at any moment and maul photographer Annie Leibovitz? Yes. Is puffy-lipped Scarlett's mouth shown slightly open because she was photographed mid-vowel, as she was mouthing the words, "FOR GOD'S SAKE, PLEASE, SOMEBODY HELP ME!?" I think so.

  • Graydon Carter, VF's editor in chief, for inflicting Tom Ford's idiotic "Naked Hollywood" portfolio on us in the first place -- and for once again proving, as Advertising Age editor Scott Donaton puts it, the futility of magazines attempting to "use shock to hide the absence of a real idea or something meaningful or relevant to say."

  • Whoever it was in Condé Nast's circulation or manufacturing departments that decided the March VF had to be sold on the newsstand in a sealed polybag -- the magazine equivalent of a Trojan Magnum condom -- thereby misleading consumers into thinking it contained way better porn than it actually did.

  • Carl Icahn, for his Emily Litella-ish "Never mind" about breaking up Time Warner.

  • Atoosa Rubenstein, Seventeen's editor in chief, for viewing designer Bryan Bradley's latest collection at the recent New York tent shows and then telling Fashion Week Daily, "I feel like I want to start starving myself so I can wear those clothes now." As Gawker wrote, "And a thousand teenage girls go running for the toilet."

  • All the shameless, soulless, craven teen-magazine editors who have put Paris Hilton on their covers (Atoosa is not the only one) -- as long as I'm on the subject of teen media. Silly editors! Stupid heiress porn-star sluts are not good role models! (God, how I miss Grrrl Power.)

  • NBC, for not only fawning over Bode Miller, Michelle Kwan and other Olympic failures, but for inflicting Bob Costas on us once again. As Advertising Age Executive Editor Jonah Bloom puts it, "His interviews with hip young snowboarders were the broadcast equivalent of watching your great uncle take to the dance floor at your wedding."

  • Richard Desmond, for not only continuing to bankroll the appalling American version of his British celebrity tabloid OK!, but for recently remaking it as a tone-deaf Us Weekly clone, with boring-ass coverlines like "Dinner with MICHAEL BUBLÉ" (Oooh, pan-seared black sea bass with Asian gazpacho!) and "ANGELINA: Baby to be born overseas?" (Yeah, maybe. So?)

  • Blockbuster -- fresh in my mind because of its current TV commercial campaign -- for continuing to market its online rental service as a better alternative to Netflix, when in fact Blockbuster routinely condescends to its customers by offering censored versions of films. Like, if you rent the indie classic "Y tu Mamá También" from Blockbusters in certain parts of the country, Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna don't kiss at the end. I suppose that means that before "Capote" can hit Blockbuster's shelves, Philip Seymour Hoffman's dialogue will be have to be redubbed by James Earl Jones.

    You know, I really could use another beer now. And a shotgun.

    The Media Guy's column appears weekly on AdAge.com and in the print edition of Advertising Age. E-mail him at dumenco@gmail.com

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