Opinion: Vanity Fair spoofs the McCains (and New Yorker)


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Is a satire of a satire funny?

The editors of Vanity Fair are about to find out. This morning they posted a spoof of last week’s controversial New Yorker cover, the illustration featuring Sen. Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, dressed Islamic terrorist-style, fist bumping before a burning American flag.

Depending on who you asked, it was either incendiary or brilliant political parody.

The Vanity Fair illustration, drawn by Tim Bower, gives the New Yorker treatment to Sen. John McCain and his wife. The likely Republican nominee is pictured stooped over a walker, tapping his wife, Cindy, who is clutching an assortment of prescription pill bottles. On the wall hangs a portrait of President George W. Bush.

The editors, tongue firmly in cheek, explained it this way:

‘We had our own presidential campaign cover in the works, which explored a different facet of the Politics of Fear, but we shelved it when The New Yorker’s became the ‘It Girl’ of the blogosphere. Now, however, in a selfless act of solidarity with our downstairs neighbors here at the Condé Nast building, we’d like to share it with you. Confidentially, of course.’


If Vanity Fair’s editors find themselves at the center of their own political hullabaloo, don’t say they weren’t warned.

-- Kate Linthicum

Cover art: Vanity Fair