Robert Harrison and Confidential
October 19, 2006 9:13 PM   Subscribe

The Hollywood moguls were appalled...Hitherto, Tinseltown had the police and politicians in its capacious pocket, yet here, landing like a ton of hot manure, was this crummy magazine from the east coast. A sharp look from British Journalism Review at the career of Robert Harrison, whose 1952 magazine Confidential single-handedly "opened the floodgates of tell-all sleaze." Seems Harrison branched out from publishing a long string of 1940s girlie mags after being inspired by the Estes Kefauver organized crime hearings that gripped early TV audiences in the U.S.A.
posted by mediareport (2 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Thanks to him we are commemorating half a century of crashing careers, wrecked reputations and marriages split asunder.

Outstanding. But a bit unfair to blame the messenger.

Interesting mediareport, mediareport.
posted by three blind mice at 9:25 PM on October 19, 2006

Fascinating story.

But I could have done without the irony of tabloid-style, overstated assertions within the British Journalism Review's article (at the first link) like:

"For more than four years Confidential devastated the private lives of hundreds of celebrities"

Either "devastated" is simply the wrong word entirely - or this is an absurd claim about the genuine effect of the revelations.

One thing I've always found fascinating is how inexact a science it is to predict the public's take on "scandal". There's such an unfathomable tipping point when/if a loveable rogue becomes a "shit" and vice versa.
posted by Jody Tresidder at 5:59 AM on October 20, 2006

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