Sunday, December 30, 2007

Tabloid Baby's 2007 Journalist of the Year

Our awards season moves forward with what's sure to be a controversial decision... not even Our Man Elli in Israel can claim the influence of a short, 57-year-old attorney who ought to know better, Tabloid Baby's 2007...

Harvey Levin

Time Magazine has their Vladimir Putin. We have Harvey Levin, the bronzed, buffed and boy-buffered figurehead and queen of the corporate porn-pushing gossip site TMZ.com, the most noxious news operation on the Internet and its recent syndicated television spin-off, the whitewashed, inconsequential, soul-sucking, corrupt half hour of daily infotainment built around the phony “newsroom” interaction between Levin’s Mr. Chips and his stable of fawning young pretty boys who run off to do his bidding, which is getting in the faces of Hollywood folk as they go about their daily business, with little regard for consequence or perspective .

As our esteemed pal Ray Richmond at The Hollywood Reporter wrote in August on his essential Past Deadline site:

"TMZ is the Antichrist... toxic and tactless... classless... (an) attack-dog corner of cyberspace... backed by boatloads of AOL/Time Warner corporate cash... so unctuous, sleazy and extreme that it's singlehandedly slicing a dagger through whatever credibility entertainment journalism had remaining. It's ruining things for those who are at least fighting to retain a measure of taste and sensitivity, as boss Harvey Levin and his TMZ possess none."

Despite-- and because of-- his crimes, Harvey Levin deserves the title of Tabloid Baby’s Journalist of The Year, and not only because he’s given us so much to write about these past twelve months. Put it this way: who did more damage to entertainment reporting in 2007 than Harvey Levin? In 2007, he and his gutter operation did indeed wield that dagger and in the process almost singlehandedly transformed Hollywood entertainment reporting into a gutter-level street battle fueled by self-hatred, jealousy and anger, with no concern for what once determined greatness, excellence or fame, and in the process, overwhelming the fine reportage of Nikki Finke and Ray Richmond, while sending the Defamer crowd into hiding.

Some credit for Levin’s “rise” must be given to his former executive producer and BFF, Lisa Gregorish, who at the TelePictures mother show, Extra!, cultivated a brawny camp cult following on camera and behind the scenes and, before their Collins-Evans falling out, allowed Levin to branch off, actually establish an office in West Hollywood upstairs from a gym, and water his own crop of wide-eyed boytoys who are the real stars of a sordid series whose ostensible on-air personalities are a bunch of plug-uglies cut from Levin's pre-fab-makeover mold.

Stripped of any moral compass, fueled by crude, vulgar, witless, often disgusting writing, with no regard for fairplay, history, truth, justice or the American way, the cowardly TMZ operation is the apotheosis of Bush-era Hollywood, run as a division by corporate monoliths and concerned only with the bottom line. And as TMZ distracts America from important issues (like war, the writers strike, studio failures and television's ideas crisis) with its frenzied pursuit of unstable young women, it has the lazy “mainstream” news media to thank for welcoming it as a legitimate news source despite its obvious deceptions and lies about its tactics and practices (hey, Harvey's even got the New York Times on his side!).

Harvey, meanwhile, can thank his lucky stars that in 2007, no one was killed in TMZ’s irresponsible line of duty. Unless, of course, you count David Hans Schmidt, the celebrity porn broker who was TMZ.com’s partner in porn-pushing, until his mysterious “suicide” a couple of weeks after TMZ TV’s premiere.

We're not through yet. Stay tuned for Tabloid Baby's 2007 Person of The Year...


Anonymous said...

Tab Baby .. I think you really missed the mark on this one .. if Harvey (I use to be a lawyer) Levin is Journalist of the Year ... than for sure "G-Hollywood" the registered sex offender stalkarazzo employed by TMZ should be Person of the Year for sure!

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmm..! (stroking chin hair, a la Freud.)

Anonymous said...

This is a horrible commentary to where our society is going, and that would be to hell in a hand basket. So sad

Anonymous said...

This man should be put out to pasture for activly trying to ruin so many innocent people.

His kind is a blight on society and we'd all be MUCH BETTER OFF without them!

Anonymous said...

OMG - what is this world coming to. His family must be so proud.

Isn't it time that we demand credible, humane and most of all accurate journalism!!!

No respect left in this world, especially when it comes to reporting the news.

What goes around, comes around Mr. Levin.

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