15 years later…

15 years later…

: The 15th anniversary of Entertainment Weekly caught me quite by surprise. I wasn’t counting.

Rick Tetzeli, EW’s third editor, was nice enough to quote my editor’s note from the first issue and it got me to look back at the 10 promises I made to EW’s readers:

10. This is a national magazine. We cover what’s at your local ‘plex instead of what’s on Broadway because more than 200 million of you don’t live in New York (you lucky ducks).

9. We won’t have long, ponderous, pompous articles about show-biz–5,000-word stories about 50-minute albums … Short is fine.

8. The magazine is current…. Each issue will tell you what you need to know now.

7. Entertainment Weekly is selective. We don’t review and report on everything, on what’s notable… In fact, finding what’s notable is our most important job.

6. The magazine must be easy to use…. You also should be able to find out quickly and easily what our critics think, and that’s why they grade (from A+ to F) everything they review.

5. This magazine will be a voice for quality in a business that needs one.

4. Since we are boldly and loudly opinionated, we also must be open to the opinions of others…. In this magazine, everybody’s a critic.

3. Our critics enjoy the areas of entertainment they review. They are discriminating fans and members of the audience, just like you.

2. Guaranteed: The opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the writers and are free from influence by advertisers, corporations, public relations people, or stars.

1. Entertainment Weekly will be entertaining….

Sounds a little blogish, I think. Not a bad list, eh? You’ll have to tell me whether the magazine follows those rules.

Another time, I may start telling some of the stories of the magazine’s launch and my departure (I refused to sign the editor’s contract at Time Inc., with its shut-up clause, precisely because I believed it was important to maintain my right to tell those stories, good and bad).

This week, I simply want to congratulate editors Tetzeli and Jim Seymore before him and the staff of the magazine through the years. Good work. So the baby’s a teenager already. Damn.