Monday, October 15, 2007

In which I get nitpicky

Staying on topic of the November 2007 Vanity Fair issue.

At first, I considered saying something snarky about the nude photoshoot of Victoria's Secret models as a promotion for the annual VS show. But, why bother? I'm not the target audience, so have them cover the soft-core porn with Patrick Demarchelier's reputation and let's move on. I'm much more annoyed about inaccuracies in an otherwise well-researched article. Not really beauty-related, but worth a mention.

Lisa Robinson's story about the late French singer-songwriter Serge Gainsbourg is interesting to anyone who has even a little interest in French culture and music, past and present (his daughter, Charlotte Gainsbourg, is a talented singer and fashion icon in her own right). I'm not the biggest Francophile ever, but even I know that making a broad statement like "France's most beloved and important songwriter" might be pushing it just a little, since I doubt Ms Robinson has polled the crowds to see how Gainsbourg measured against Charles Aznavour, Jacques Brel, or George Brassens. Not to mention that while Yves Montand, who died the same year as Gainsbourg, didn't write his own songs, he was every bit as iconic, famous and adored.

Much more annoying is a little historical oops: "...who escaped czarist Russia in 1919." Russia in 1919 was a very unhappy place, deeply torn by a civil war, but it was no longer czarist. Nicholas II was forced to abdicate in 1917 and was executed in 1918.
Not a huge issue, but some respect to readers with good memory for historical facts has never killed anyone.


  1. History seems to escape today's audiences it seems, for some reason...(let's not elaborate or there's no stopping me)
    So it's really good of you to mention this.
    It's not as if Russia was an alien colony in Alpha Centaur; it's very much part of Europe and people this or that side of the Atlantic should get their facts checked all the same.

  2. Czarist Russia in 1919, LOL. I guess Vanity Fair forgot about the insignificant little revolution of 1917.

  3. Poor Nicholas II, I always feel so bad for him (Well and any other deposed monarch) Imperial Russia (IMHO) is the best time period of Russian History to Study :D *goes to watch Ivan IV*


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