RIP: Weekly World News

Web.Lg Batboy(For7-16)The Weekly World News, home of Ed Anger and BatBoy is joining the big newsstand in the sky: as it is shutting down. Hopping mad columnist Ed Anger was a big inspiration on us here at Stately Beat Manor, and Bat-Boy inspired a musical and a comic strip, first illustrated by Peter Bagge then Danielle Corsetto. Other comics running on the site included Spy Cat by Ernie Colon. In addition comics vets Robert Greenberger and Paul Kupperberg were staffers there, and Greenberger has word of the cancellation on his blog:

Friday morning, Jeff Rovin comes in for a meeting and then the staff was to be called in. He’s looking harried, not at all relaxed. At 11:30, we’re finally shown into an office where we are told the Board of Directors has chosen to close Weekly World News. The reasons given make no sense. We’re stunned and shell-shocked. We’re to stay on through August 3, finishing the reprint issues and then we’re done. A glorious, funny, odd publication, born in 1979, will go out with a whimper and all I can think is that something’s going on that they’re not telling us because it just doesn’t make sense.


Farewell, Weekly World News. You may not have been SPy Magazine but in your own way you were just as funny.

Comments

  1. Kids don’t eat bugs? That artist obviously didn’t play with the right kids at recess. There’s at least one kid in every elementary school who will eat *anything* for a quarter.

  2. Torsten Adair says:

    My favorite headline, circa 1989, was “ka-BOOB! Woman’s Breast Implant Explodes”.
    WWN was the perfect reading material for the laundromat. If the owners are smart, they will issue some books, like a collection of prophecies. Or a biography of Batboy. Or a series of weird subjects, like pets, religion, aliens, and people.

  3. That’s a real shame. Like The Onion, they proved in their way that fake news was realer than “real” news. I think perhaps the death knell for them was when they dropped all rational pretense of reporting real news and just went for the goofiest concepts possible, maybe in an ill-considered attempt to be more like The Onion. (A recent issue I have has an article about trees hurting the environment by smoking discarded butts. Ronald Reagan was right!) I can only hope that with the ultimate definition of “tabloid” going the way of the dodo the smear rags mightn’t be too far behind. Via con Dios, Bat Boy.

  4. In the end, any company can do as they deem most appropriate. If Weekly World News can’t find a stable place on the newsstand, AMI has to act accordingly. My own thoughts are clearly written out of shock and affection for the work being done and pride in the final product.

  5. What happens to the Killer Trees (working their way north from Brazil)? The poison Brazilian needle-bird? The world’s smallest whales?

  6. My favorite WWN headline was DOCTORS SUCKED THE FAT FROM MY BODY!

    Trade secret, now it can be told: When I was on staff at Ruby-Spears back i the 1980s, we used the WORLD WEEKLY NEWS for story ideas.

  7. Denny Spurling says:

    Now what am I gonna do? I have seventeen “sources familiar with the situation”, nine “leading scientists”, and twenty ” family friends” on my payroll.

    And Hitler WAS captured in Arkansas…and Bin Laden WAS nabbed in the Missouri Ozarks. Really. I know the writer of those articles. He’d never tell a falsehood. He’s a saint, I tell you…a saint. And damned handsome.

  8. Tom Wilbur says:

    Being involved in the first issue of Weekly World News way back when in Lantana, Florida, (the first editor was Phil Bunton) I can only say—to those who make dispariging remarks about it content—”What’s the matter, can’t you take a joke?’
    Twilbur

  9. Esme Comfort says:

    Some of THE best puns ever in those headlines!

  10. Actually, it’s still alive on the web. Just because it’s no longer in print as a tabloid does not mean it has gone completely away. And to this I say, thank God that Ed Anger still has a soapbox. And don’t miss the story about the trucker with the alien prostate!

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  12. I will miss you sooo much Weekly World News! I always remember reading these every time I went up my mamaws house!! She always had a new copy and yesterday I was sitting in her living room and asked where her new issues were and she said they quit making them! I was speechless! What kind of government conspiracy is this? Anyway, long live Bat Boy and Bigfoot!!!

  13. Patricia White says:

    I can’t believe it. I work in another country for a few years and the WWN bites the dust. I always hoped I would be able to read about my death under an assumed name again sometime.
    In 1986, the National Enquirer printed two full color pictures of me putting my head in a lion’s mouth. In 1991, one of the photos appeared (black and white) in the Weekly World News. It read in part that poor “Hanna Toussaint” of “Kessler Bros Circus in Belgium” suffocated and died as the lion sucked the breath right out of her. Poor Greta the lion had to be shot by “roustabouts”. Good heavens! This story was concocted from a single photo of Rex and me! The story provided lots of laughs for my friends and I over the years, discussing my early demise.
    The “incident” is now being referenced on animal rights websites as FACT!
    Ha ha I’ll miss you, WWN (This issue had George Bush Sr. strolling with an alien on the cover). I am still very much alive and well, sorry the WWN isn’t.

  14. First reaction when i saw the before and after: awesome.

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