Photoshop and Make-believe: The term NewsBeast might have new meaning today with the cover of the new issue of Newsweek, which—in case you’ve been living under a rock that blocks access to Twitter—imagines and visualizes what Diana, Princess of Wales would be like at 50. Royal hanger-on (and editor-in-chief) Tina Brown used the magic of Adobe to etch a few lines on Diana’s face and give the not-dead princess an iPhone alongside a fictional biography of Diana, who died in 1997. The Atlantic Wire called the cover package “alarmingly difficult to look away from,” while Isaac Chotiner of The New Republic wrote that “[i]t is almost impossible to do justice to the sheer awfulness of this story.” Awfulness aside, at Arts Desk we’re just holding out for Zombie Diana.
House Band: DCist’s Sriram Gopal profiles Thomas House, the “de facto dance master” of those drum circles that illuminate Malcolm X (Meridian Hill) Park on Sunday afternoons. House, a D.C. native, is well-versed in West African dance styles, specifically those originating in Guinea, Senegal, and Nigeria. But he wasn’t always a hoofer. When he was 12, Gopal writes, House was a drummer who noticed the dancers were getting all the attention. “I saw that the dancers were getting a lot of publicity. The drummers were backstage,” House told Gopal. “I’m like a ham, so I said, ‘I got to switch.'”
We’ve Got Enough Problems Without Your Big Space Robots: At least we got the funny half. Reviewing Transformers: Dark of the Moon for The Washington Post today, Mark Jenkins writes that Michael Bay‘s latest adventure of crane shots and ejaculatory explosions (Bay doesn’t call his blog “Shoot for the Edit” for nothing) sets its “first, jokier section” in D.C. (briefly played by us but mostly portrayed by the Midwest). I guess that means the Washington chapter of the movie includes a scene in which “a berserk bureaucrat” played by Ken Jeong “drops his pants to show something really important to a flustered [Shia LaBeouf].”