Archives About Staff BagNews is dedicated to visual politics, media literacy and the analysis of news images.
November 17, 2010

Thoughts on the Palin NYT Mag Cover: Like She’s So “Homemade”

1. What’d we say? Post midterms = SP 24/7.

2. Hmm, 8 out of 10 Team Mamma Grizzly members are Poppa Grizzlies.

3. Going by the labels, if you take out Davis and Scheunemann, it’s all scoring cash and PR.

4. Ha! Photo shows Scheunemann in McCain war room. Mainly, the war was between Randy and everybody else  after Palin lured her tutor away mid-campaign.

5. Using pitted white board, pushpins and scotch tape suggests klutzy Alaska Mom still mostly winging it — as opposed to fact there’s serious money going into making us think she’s so “homemade.”  (And, it’s playing the same card suggesting Todd is that high up in the food chain.)

  • Enoch Root

    Do my eyes deceive me, or are the words ‘guerilla organization’ on that cover? How do you get to be the VP candidate for the Republican Party if you only have a ‘guerilla organization?’

    Or perhaps they’re referring to Todd’s connections to AIP.

  • echo

    Nice.

    Now where did I put my darts ?

  • http://cheetahmaster.livejournal.com/ PMMDJ

    I always associate the pushpins-and-string imagery with TV’s version of conspiracy theorists, actually. When the cops in your police procedural break into someone’s apartment and see that on the wall, they know that person is either a conspiracy theorist, or a serial killer, or hunting a serial killer.

    • thomas

      That’s exactly right. This is The Wire, with Palin as a front for a criminal enterprise, and the NYTimes has cracked the case.

      It’s an interesting graphic solution to the SP=24/7 order of the day, since she’s obviously somebody they loathe. They’re not REALLY putting Sarah Palin on their cover. But they are. But they’re not. But they are.

  • Megan

    Spider in the center of her web?

  • http://bagnews.com/staff/#mshaw Michael Shaw

    Hmm, two interesting reads.

  • bresson

    I completely agree with previous commenters re: conspiracy theorists. The visual of “The Palin Network” is reminiscent of the logo for “The X Files.” And when I saw all of those wildly drawn lines, canted snapshots, and circled images connected to a (sinister?) central figure, the first thing that came to mind was Glenn Beck’s chalkboard.

    I think the conspiracy theorist angle is a facet in the overall thrust of the piece, which to me is the crazed mindset of the American right and its effect on both the body politic and the national discourse. I say “thrust” literally – the disembodied head lunges at us and is entirely “in our face.” What it confronts us with is its attendant network of insane noise (you can almost hear the radio static) subsumed (or enabled) by Palin’s oblivious ignoramus smile. The image is reminiscent of the dream sequence in Hitchcock’s “Vertigo” with its themes of obsession and insanity.

    The cover confronts us, literally with the mystic deva-esque combination of Insanity and Inanity that our national discourse has become. It’s their craziness; we just live in it. Despite the smiles and light comedy, the madness has a violent aspect – the crazed polygons forcibly created by the lines suggest a broken window – or better yet, a broken mirror. Palin’s image is an idealized, fun-house reflection (with her own wholesome reality TV show, doncha know) of the teabagger’s own resentment, rage, stupidity, and utter mediocrity.

  • Bugboy

    I’ve been analysing SP’s face trying to nail down what is so “appealing” about it, as a biologist I swear something is there speaking on a subliminal level I haven’t identified yet…Christine O’Donnel had the same look.

    The graphic speaks to that mystery, what is it about her that has captivated America, is it this army of misfits behind her?

    A lot of people live their lives through others…celebrities, sports figures, television characters, even their own kids. It’s what we do when we read fiction or go to the movies…we live another’s life for a while. Sarah Palin is a convenient fantasy figure for alot of people who have a hard time distinquishing between reality and fantasy.

  • gulati

    Very generally, the GOP and their ilk seem to prefer mannish women. Square jaws, defined cheekbones, with personalities that display a certain swagger. Ann Coulter can even border on the stereotypical man-in-drag. This of course runs contrary to the GOP definition of women as the homebody, child-raising second fiddle to the man-of-the-house. Perhaps red-state-men see women through the same conflicted, bizarro-world lens that they view every other issue. Maybe they want the feminine woman in the house, and the mannish woman (the sort with which you might enjoy a beer) outside of the house. Oddly, even with all these contortions, when the topic of homosexuality comes to the fore, Reds view those with a different orientation with disgust. Conflicted indeed!

  • tinwoman

    The cover highlights the extent to which Palin is the atificial creation of a committee. I’ve always thought she seemed like that–this cover only confirms it.

  • Julia Grey

    It gives you an uneasy feeling because it reminds you of a cracked mirror, and as a composition it is unbalanced. Most of the image’s “weight” is on the left side of the page.

Refresh Archives

Random Notes