Punch magazine has been unwell for sometime. Although many
suspected the illness would be fatal, this is apparently not the case.
The new Punch claims to be fighting fit and ready to please its readers.
The message is: Punch is back and this time it’s funny.
Problem is, Punch has returned to the newsstands as a schizophrenic.
A cross between Loaded, the National Enquirer and Private Eye, Punch
can’t quite decide which one it wants to be. All of them? None of them?
’Oh, it’s so complicated,’ the confused Mr Punch says, ’why don’t you
dear readers choose instead?’ Or not, as the case may be.
The first hint that something odd is going on is the appearance of
Well, to be more precise, breasts. Punch has discovered breasts and it
thinks they’re great. Not only does it think they’re great, it wants to
show you as many of them as possible. Gratuitous? No problem. It even
has a page called ’gratuitous sex’. Laughed? Well, no, not really.
Want to know about the sex life of the PR hotshot, Matthew Freud? Well,
now you can. His ex-girlfriend, Marina Baker, tells all (oh yeah, by the
way, they only broke up five years ago, so its really current and, oh
yeah, there are some breasts in there too). There is a piece on this
summer’s Hollywood blockbusters - but I think it’s only so that we can
be shown a picture of Demi Moore with, wait for it, nothing on. And
there is a spread on ads banned by the Advertising Standards Authority
called, wait for it, ’sex sells’ (you guessed it, there are some breasts
in there too).
What can I say? Get well soon.
Alan Johnson is a media doctor and promises to visit Punch next time
it’s on his ward.