The New Rom Com from Fox News and Trump

By: Jacob Lewis

People say a lot of bad things about Fox News and how they report national and world events. Journalists, politicians and comedians all point out the way that they unabashedly promote a right wing agenda at the expense of factual and ethical integrity. However, while these arguments are important, I can’t help but feel that the left is turning a blind eye to one really important issue. That is, I really feel that not enough attention is being paid to their awful photo shopping skills.

While I’ve been noticing this issue for a while on their website, the problem really boiled over this morning when the following image was the banner of their top story.

Once I saw it, I felt I needed to break my silence and say something.

The image was for this story on whether the Democrats will run on a platform of presidential impeachment during the midterm elections. I read the entire article, several times actually, not because I was particularly interested in the story, but because I needed to take in the full thing before I passed judgment on the image. Maybe there was a reason behind it I could not glimpse until I took in the whole article. But, after ingesting every word, going over every potential use of symbolism or irony, I feel pretty safe in critiquing it.

So, without further ado, I ask the universe…why is Fox News photo shopping romantic comedy poses into their serious news stories?”

The back to back mismatched romantic lead pose has been used for decades. Sites like Cracked, College Humor and many others have already reported on its recycled use, so I won’t go into it (I will say that as much as I love Matthew McConaughey and most everything he’s done in his career, the “How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days” poster will always makes me want to immediately rip out the scruff of his neck with my teeth every time I see his face on screen). But, back to Fox News, just look at the above examples and try not to see the Fox News banner image as something that would just fit right in.

Again, this isn’t an actual picture. These two were never back to back with contrasting expressions. Someone, who is likely paid to come up with visual images that add weight to an article, spent time looking through collections of images, saw these two and thought, “My god, I could cut these two together and…Perfect!” Some form of this thought process had to have happened, but for the life of me I can’t recreate the logic behind it. The story is supposed to make me wonder if the Democrats will make impeachment a tent pole issue in 2018, but now all I can think about is, “these two are terrible for each other, they’re complete opposites. She’s happy and full of life. He’s an old grump who lends credibility to white supremacists while bringing the world to the brink of a completely avoidable nuclear confrontation. They couldn’t possibly be more incompatible. But, maybe…just maybe…that’s just what each of them have been looking for.”

I could end this by saying, “the funny thing is I would actually see this movie.” However, I wouldn’t. It would be terrible, not because Trump is terrible (in fact, I will continue to petition Criterion to admit Home Alone II: Lost in New York into their collection) but because the underlying premise that the image suggests seems tired hackneyed. Some animals have special markings to warn predators that they’re poisonous and some movies use template poses to do the same.

In retrospect though, the image did make me read the article. I don’t know how to feel about that…

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