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Those devious Dutch: a gallery in Amsterdam is showing a painting that has “sparked outrage among monarchists,” according to today’s Sun. It depicts Prince Harry wearing that infamous Nazi uniform while the royal family, including his late mother, Princess Diana, look on in horror. The Sun, not known for its depth of reporting, doesn’t provide an artist’s name or the title of the piece. What, are they withholding names in order to protect the poor artist from those deadly pro-monarchy extremists?

The Sun does document angry quotes from a Tory MP and the newspaper’s royal photographer, who says, “It is demeaning of the Royal family. Some of the images are just awful. Anyone who has any connection with the Royal Family will find it offensive.” (Funny, the Sun was the first to post those pics of Prince Harry with his hands snugly cupped around the bosom of a busty blonde.) The choicest quote comes from the gallery’s owner, Maarten de Vlieger, who says, “Prince Harry is the one responsible for being a Nazi as he dressed up like that in England two years ago and there is no way we will be withdrawing it.” All right now. See, that’s how you speak truth to power.

It’s official: starting Sunday, any song available for download can compete for the No. 1 spot on the UK charts if it sells enough. Before, there had to be a physical copy of a single in stores for it to qualify. Jason Deans at the Guardian’s Organ Grinder thinks this is pure madness.

It won’t be a singles chart anymore, will it? You know – new stuff, hip tunes the kids are listening to. It’ll be an anything goes chart. Irritating novelty songs. Whatever old standard has been dusted down for a new advertising campaign that’s breaking that week…

Oh, c’mon? Does this guy not remember Crazy Frog and the accompanying ringtone that sat atop the British charts for an unreal amount of time? The UK pop charts have sucked for as long as I can remember, and if, say, some random ’80s band enters the chart because they got played in the latest Gap commercial, it can’t help but improve the landscape.

Wow, look who the BBC picked to top their Sound of 2007 poll. Their selection can’t help but feel anticlimactic after a week’s worth of articles on how Mika will dominate the airwaves in ’07. But the media blitz is just beginning. Every new rock idol needs a childhood myth, and Mika relays his story to The Times:

“I wasn’t the kind of boy that used to throw stones at windows, but I would still get into trouble with the teachers for saying things that were blindingly obvious. Why was I being picked on? All sorts of things. I was called the typical fag and all those other homophobic, horrible little comments that kids throw at each other. But it wasnâ??t just that. Sometimes my hair was way too long. I was tubbier then, so they would say I had child-bearing hips.”

Oh yeah and if there was any question, the boy’s gay as a flamingo in a K-hole wearing capris. Gay.com’s Hassam Mirza describes him as “a bit lanky, a bit clowny, definitely a bit gay, and unapologetically joyful.”

In other news…say hello to my new bullet points:

  • On January 28th, Top Gear will air the crash that nearly killed Richard Hammond.(The Sun)

  • OK, how many lists is The Guardian gonna do? This time, they cite the ten bands ready to break into the mainstream, led by the Garden State-buoyed indie band, The Shins.
  • “Vote Ken Russell!” says Guardian‘s Ryan Dilbey, regarding this year’s Celebrity Big Brother.
  • Pop idol Will Young takes on Noel Coward in the theater.(Telegraph)
  • How British scientists and musicians are bridging the gap between science and music.(The Independent)
  • An oldie but goodie…a classic French and Saunders Madonna spoof on YouTube.
  • In her quest to become a granny, Sharon Osbourne encourages her daughters to become rusted-out slags. And she has the nerve to criticize Madonna‘s child rearing?
  • Our girl Kylie Minogue is the No. 1 gay icon, according to 5000 gay men and lesbians who were polled. Madonna? She’s way down at No. 7.
  • Critics at the Telegraph explain what they want to see happen in 2007. Music critic Neil McCormick wants young bands to stop aping the Beatles and the Stones and pick up a Chris Brown or a Mary J. Blige CD. “If I were managing a young band, I would put them in a rehearsal room with a stack of modern R&B CDs. If someone could cross the lean production aesthetic, rhythmic drive and sonic inventiveness of such radical urban producers as the Neptunes and Timbaland with the power, passion, commitment, and song structure of rock, they might finally drag the whole genre kicking and screaming into the 21st century.”
  • A source tells The Sun that Jordan‘s four-year-old son, Harvey, was burned when he stepped into a bathtub and accidentally turned on the hot water.
  • Lily Allen‘s dognapping drama.(The Sun)
  • Is Prince William’s girlfriend, Kate Middleton, a descendant of Beatrix Potter?
  • A David Beckham “Chia Pet,” of sorts.
  • A Sacha Baron Cohen interview on NPR!
  • I know the “here today, gone tomorrow” music biz runs at a light-speed pace, but how crazy is it that the Kaiser Chiefs, who released an album less than two years ago, have announced a “UK comeback” tour?
  • Bond vs. the Queen: BAFTA announced its film longlist yesterday. (Variety)
  • Sienna Miller says she’s done with “mature” men, a term I’m sure Jude Law appreciates.(Mirror)
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By Kevin Wicks
Kevin Wicks is the founding editor of Anglophenia.