Every Wednesday, we do Midweek Madness, the game in which we weather the storm of celebrity tabloids, looking for a ray of sunshine...or at least a good bit of gossip. This week, Britney Spears and Angelina Jolie both "win" 2 covers; the last cover is dominated by poor, mournful Michelle Williams. Intern Sharon donned her parka and snow boots to help us scrape the "news" from In Touch, Star, Us, Life & Style and OK!; details after the jump.
"Angie's Joy, Jen's Pain." Intern Sharon didn't even read the whole cover story because she's so sick of Angelina vs. Jennifer crap. But she sums the article up thusly: "Jennifer is 'upset' by the fact that 'she'll never bear Brad's babies.' Ugh!" There are, however, two pages of "Silver Foxes": Tim Gunn, Harrison Ford, Anderson Cooper and George Clooney. Yay! Also inside: During a photo shoot, Kim Kardashian ate a cheeseburger, a taco, a bite of a hot dog, a bite of KFC and two doughnuts. For lunch. Jaime Lynn Spears picked up 5 lbs. of crawfish for her baby daddy's dinner. She also likes to go to Sonic and order cheesecake bites dipped in barbecue sauce. Dannielynn Birkhead's eye condition is called strabismus, and she's getting surgery in early March. Does anyone know if that is connected to fetal alcohol syndrome?
Grade: D (hail)
Life & Style
"This Is Crazy!" Angelina took a 19 hour flight to Iraq — alone! She also traveled outside of the country's green zone. OMG. She spent most of her time talking to soldiers, and went on the trip in order to highlight the fact that 60% of Iraqi refugees are younger than 12. Intern Sharon says, "She should adopt one!" Also inside: Madonna's party for Malawi raised $5.5 million. Did Britney "lose" $60 million? She's being audited and her parents think Sam Lutfi was using her cash to pay his rent. Plus private planes, hotel rooms, shopping and an entourage don't come cheap. Right now her dad is giving her $60 a day, and if she needs more she has to explain why. Meanwhile, sis Jamie Lynn was seen in a Louisiana Wal-Mart looking depressed. Also: Fergie spent $30,000 in 2 hours at Calvin Klein in NYC; Sam Lufti was at Paris Hilton's birthday party and didn't leave her side all night; the Olsen twins go out, but they don't party out of happiness... they have trust issues and blah blah blah. Heidi Montag is turning to choreographer Shane Sparks for dance-move assistance. He plans on helping her by combining the styles of Britney, Beyoncé, Ciara and Chris Brown.
Grade: D+ (sleet)
"Michelle's Final Goodbye." One of the first things you see when you open the magazine is a picture of John Mayer in a Borat-style lime green swim contraption*, which is great, since the cover story is so damn sad. Many of the details of Heath's funeral are here: Michelle broke down while reading Shakespeare's Sonnet 18, which begins, "Shall I compare thee to summer's day." Then she and the other mourners walked into the ocean, where they slapped the water and yelled Heath's name like they wanted him to hear. Also inside: Upon checking into a NYC hotel, Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham was pissed no paparazzi had followed her. "Where are the photographers? I want them alerted that I'm here!" she reportedly said. She also had lunch at Michael's and her date was late — Posh was seen sitting alone at her table fiddling with her BlackBerry and twitching in her seat for half an hour. The nerve of some people! Plus: After reading comments from people who hated her music video, Heidi Montag says, "I cried myself to sleep. I'm just a 21-year-old from a small town in Colorado trying to follow her dreams." Spencer Pratt says, "I don't think I need to defend it, it's a piece of art." Also a piece of art: The surely staged photo accompanying this article, which features Heidi sitting on a curb, holding her CD and weeping as Spencer ardently kisses her head. Lastly, Britney is making "baby steps" on the road to recovery, and her mom says she sees glimpses of her daughter coming back. Yet she continues to speak in a British accent! But Brit has no credit cards and no cash right now; she's basically grounded.
Grade: C (rain)
"I Don't Want My Kids Back." Britney's been talking to her first husband, Jason Alexander. He claims Brit says she wants to see her boys, but doesn't want to be a full-time mom. She feels like she can always have other kids later on. (!!!!) Also inside: While Angelina was in Iraq, she wasn't scared at all — though she did wear a bullet-proof vest and have a security team of 10... the security cost of visit reportedly ran up to $100,000. Michael Lohan tells the magazine that daughter Lindsay has been on Oxycodone, Adderall, Xanax and Ambien, "But most young people shouldn't be on some of these medications. Instead, they should get spiritual guidance and exercise." Meanwhile, Lindsay was seen swapping numbers with Josh Hartnett at NYC hotspot Beatrice Inn. Lastly: Jason Biggs' fiancée is pregnant;Destiny's Child singer Kelly Rowland was upset that her solo CD didn't do as well as she'd hoped (But! She got a boob job); while the writers' strike was on, a lot of stars went off their diets — "they soften up when they're not working," the mag says. Yet they are all still very thin!
Grade: C+ (flurries)
"Married In Mexico!" Britney and Adnan Ghalib had a quickie wedding back on January 9, but it's taken everyone this long to figure it out! When Britney accused her mom of sleeping witih her husband, it wasn't Kevin she was talking about — her "hubby" is Adnan. Since the elopement took place four days after she was rushed to the hospital and declared 5150, there's no telling what her mental state was during the nuptials. Plus: Adnan gets free Ed Hardy clothing on the condition that he wears it when he's with Britney (and gets photographed in it). Also inside: Knocked-up Jessica Alba says, "Every couple of hours, I turn into Satan if I don't eat something." Josh Hartnett and Helena Christensen were seen hanging all over each other; they're clinging to each other for comfort after Heath's death. Madonna probably had an eye and eyebrow lift, as well as Botox and fat injected into her face, since her eyes look different, her forehead has no lines and she's got apple-cheeks. Blind item! "Which hot TV star who is dating an award-winning singer likes to play while the cat is away? The actor has been busy making the round during NYC's fashion week trying to score with lots of ladies." Jennifer Aniston, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are all named as co-hosts of a pre-Oscar benefit in Beverly Hills on February 23. "Brad is prepared for a knock-down, drag-out fight," claims a source. Another insider says: "If Jen is nice, Angie will be nice. If Jen is mean, Angie will let her have it." Jamie Lynn Spears is known for "drinking to get wrecked." She even drank mouthwash. Residents of Kentwood, LA are spilling all her business: "I know for a fact that [baby daddy] Casey was not her first," says one. "There were at least two others." Plus! JLS was at a party recently and made out with the host. The guy asked if she'd broken up with Casey, to which Jamie Lynn reportedly replied, "I'm pregnant. I can have have sex with anyone I want. I can't get pregnant again." When that guy ran away, JLS left with some other dude, who told everyone the next day that yeah, they had sex. But now she's going to move out of her mom's house an into a double-wide trailer. "That's how we do it in Louisiana," says a source. Kirsten Dunst is a drunk, maybe because, growing up, she always had to please her mom, her acting coaches or directors and not herself. Sigh. Heath Ledger had Oxycodone in his system when he died, but there was no bottle of those pills found in the apartment. Did Mary-Kate's bodyguard arrive before the police and remove it? "The person who provided Heath those drugs can be held responsible and possibly be charged with manslaughter," says a former medical examiner. Lastly: Kirstie Alley is "lonelier than ever and packing on the pounds again"; iIn a will-they-or-won't-they wedding story that's 6 pages long, Angelina and Brad may have a Buddhist ceremony; Jessica Alba is pressuring Cash to set a date; Liev Schreiber and Naomi Watts will get hitched in Australia before the end of the year; and it doesn't look good for Nick Lachey and Vanessa Minnillo: "All they do is fight."
Grade: B (blizzard with schools & offices closed)
*As seen here.