But the London Evening Standard persists. The Met is to investigate the disappearance of the innocent child. Good. The Met can be horrible sods but they possess the nous and means to go back to the beginning and review the facts.
Daily Mail (front page): “CAN THE YARD FIND MADDIE?”
The Sun (front page): “EXCLUSIVE: CAMERON ORDERS NEW MET POLICE PROBE INTO MADELEINE CASE”
“PM: I’VE REOPENED MADDIE FILES”
David Cameron has taken the bait. “As a dad”, he had no choice. The Sun places their man at the centre of the story. This is personal. This is in the first person.
Theresa May, the Home Secretary, explains all in an open letter to the paper that backed the Tories at the last election:
FOUR years after she went missing, Madeleine McCann is still always in our thoughts. So I welcome The Sun’s role in making sure that her case is not forgotten. None of us can know what Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry, have been going through. We can scarcely imagine the pain they have had to suffer or the pressure they have been under. We all want to see this beautiful little girl returned to her parents. That is why we have been doing everything we can behind the scenes in the search for Madeleine. Although it might not always be in the public eye, the British authorities have never given up on their work to find Madeleine.
Today I am pleased to announce that the Prime Minister and I have agreed with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner that the Met will now be using its particular expertise to review the case. The Met have skills, techniques and know-how which we hope can bring a new perspective to the case.
The Home Office will be providing the necessary financial support. Of course, the Metropolitan Police cannot promise that this work will lead to Madeleine being found. But it is right that we should do everything we can to help. It is my sincere hope that this new police involvement will bring closer the day that Madeleine comes home.
This is politics in the modern era: mawkish, opportunistic, emotive and ultimately self-serving.
MADELEINE MCCANN: To the launch of Kate McCann’s book called Madeleine. Here are the photos…
IN 2007, Anorak went on Jeremy Vine’s BBC Radio 2 show to talk about Madeleine McCann. Four years on, Kate and Gerry McCann are on the same programme.
Has anything changed in that time. Yes. The media has been fined for libeling the parents, Robert Murat’s life was damaged and, as we prdicted, the parents have become a perennial feature on the media circuit.
KATE and Gerry McCann are on Piers Morgan’s CNN show talking about their missing daughter Madeleine. As ever, we are watching the parents:
MADELEINE McCann: Day 5 of the Sun’s serialisation of the Kate McCann book Madeleine. Today the book is overtaken by an appeal to David Cameron.
Sun (front page): “OPEN UP THE MADDIE FILES”
This is this “McCanns’ open letter to Cameron”
Having tried to gain mileage and reader interest in the book – including a delve into Kate and Gerry McCann’s sex life – the Sun leads not with the book but with an appeal:
Dear Prime Minister
As a devoted father and family man, you know the importance of children. Our beloved eldest child, Madeleine, was abducted from Praia da Luz, Portugal, four years ago. Since then, we have devoted all our energies to ensuring her safe return.
Sun (front page): “I fear this outfit may led to Madeleine kidnap”
We see the child dressed in a sun hat and sun dress.
MADELEINE McCann poses for her last photo in a pretty peach top her mum fears may have made her a kidnap target.
The kidnapper wanted the outfit?
Kate McCann, 43, recalls in her new book: “She looked lovely. I was following her with my eyes admiring her. I wonder now if someone else was doing the same.”
So. Not the outfit, then. That’s the Sun’s bonkers headline, blaming an outfit for the alleged kidnap.
It was a piece re the McCanns and mentioned a link to one of the world’s richest people Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling.
MADELEINE McCann: Cassandra Jardine and Chris Freind (whose article has now been removed) debate the rights and wrongs of Kate McCann’s book. Odd that a single thread story – the vanishing of an innocent child – should be debated. But such is the way of a story that has been spun:
First up Jadirne, who asks Telegraph readers:
Kate McCann: why didn’t they believe her?
Who are they?
So far there has been only one public recantation. A tabloid journalist wrote yesterday that he “rues the day” he rubbished the McCanns’ version of the disappearance of their daughter, Madeleine, four years ago.
THE Sun has extracted so much from Kate McCann’sMadeleine for its massive serialisation it’s a wonder there’s anything left worth reading. However, I do applaud the paper’s championing of the book – I guess they must have parted with more than £500k for the rights, perhaps more given the advertising campaignbehind it.
The front-page headline informs us:
“I COULDN’T MAKE LOVE TO GERRY”
But now she can? We presume so, although, as yet, details are thin.
KATE McCann today reveals her struggle to have sex and enjoy life again after daughter Madeleine was abducted on a family holiday in Portugal on May 3, 2007.
DID you know that police sniffer dog Keela is earning more money then that Chief Constable of South Yorkshire, Med Hughes, from being hired out to other forces?
“Kate McCann ‘felt like committing suicide after Madeleine’s death’”
The Sun (front page): “I SMASHED BED IN RAGE AT COPS”
Today we learn that after just one day working with the “shambolic” Portuguese police she “wrecked a bed as she kicked out in rage”.
The story of the Portuguese police’s investigation has been a spin-off thread in the story of the child’s disappearance. The tabloid media swiftly decided they were “bungling”.
MADELEINE McCann: Anorak’s at–a-glance look at the missing child in the news: Introducing a new suspect to, coincidentally, coincide with the release of Kate McCann’s new book called Madeleine. Meet Martin N.
Daily Express front page: “MADDIE LINK TO GERMAN CHILD KILLER”
A news suspect is delivered to the masses:
THIS is the man who has confessed to one child murder and is now facing questioning over the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
The 40-year-old German youth worker, who we can name only as Martin N, is being questioned over at least three child murders and 40 suspected attacks on children across Europe.
MADELEINE McCann Book: Day 1 of the Sun’s serialisation of Kate McCann’s book Madeleine.
Front page: “WORLD EXCLUSIVE – KATE MCCANN’S BOOK WILL BREAK YOUR HEART”
You want to feel pain and heartbreak? You want to watch another woman’s suffering and feel it in your own heart? Here goes:
It was always Maddie, the media’s pet name for their lightning rod of emotion:
“I SEE HER ALONE…AND SCREAMING”
MADELEINE McCann The Book: Madeleine. Extract 1: the “Loving Mum”.
The Sun begins its serialisation of the official Our Maddie reader with the headline:
Madeleine: By Her Mum
The sub-editors have decided to restore the innocent child’s name to its full. Out goes the media’s Maddie. In comes Madeleine, in keeping with the book’s title.
MADELEINE McCann: The build up to the release of the official Madeleine book continues as Kate and Gerry are booked to appear on Irish TV’s Late Late Show.
The Irish Herald tells us that host Ryan Tubridy “will be talking to the McCanns on Friday week as they continue their efforts to locate their missing daughter”.
IT’S four years since Madeleine McCann disappeared. For those of you who have followed the story on Anorak, the story began here.
So. What news today of the single-thread story that was contained by libel laws?
LEICESTERSHIRE: Kate and Gerry McCann will today mark the fourth anniversary of their daughter Madeleine’s disappearance privately with family and friends. The couple are keeping a low profile as Mrs McCann, 43, prepares to publish her account of how the little girl vanished on a family holiday to Portugal in 2007. - The Scotsman
Family spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: “The anniversary is normally a very low-key occasion at home for them.” – The Daily Record
“It will be a private day marked with family and friends” – Clarence Mitchell, AFP
DOES talking about Madeleine McCann and other popular crime stories matter? Josh Rothman takes a look at a new book by Bill James called Popular Crime: Reflections on the Celebration of Violence:
Popular Crime is full of stories like Mary Phagan’s — stories in which sensational crimes are the catalysts of historical change. Popular crime stories (think, in our modern era, of O.J. Simpson, the Menendez brothers, or JonBenet Ramsey) are often, James laments, beneath the notice of “the best people” (“if you go to a party populated by the NPR crowd and you start talking about JonBenet Ramsey, people will look at you as if you’ve forgotten your pants”). But in fact, James argues, popular crimes matter, even if discussing them seems “vulgar.” They crystallize national issues, reveal structural facts about society, and often lead, very directly, to changes in laws and institutions. America’s lawbooks are overflowing with laws passed in direct response to popular and sensational crimes, from Megan’s Law to the Lindbergh Laws; sensational crime stories have changed the ways in which police departments are organized and newspapers are run.
Jerry Sadowitz has been knocking them bandy with jokes about Madeleine McCann at St David’s Hall in Wales.
Anorak has been to see Jerry Sadowitz. His Our Maddie gag is an adaptation of his joke on the Queen Mother. A handkerchief is placed over his outstretched hand. The magician teases the hanky back to reveal a raised middle finger. The Queen Mother and Our Maddie have become two sides of the same coin: we waited years for the Queen’s mum to die; and we’ve waited years for the end of the McCann story. Both are presented by an emotive press as objects of national unity. Press f9 for empathy. But rather than being icons of orchestrated care, the missing child and the old woman are beige news, mere filler that appeals only to the die-hards, while makes everyone else hanker for an ending.
MADELEINE McCANN: Olga Craig visits Praia Da Luz four years after Our Maddie vanished: She kicks off the tour in the 17th-century church of Our Lady of Light, “overlooking the sea in Praia da Luz on the Algarve, where the couple feel closest to Madeleine”.
The local priest is Haynes Hubbard, her Portuguese “pastor and confidant”.
Craig is optimistic about the child still being alive:
Here that they still hope one day to return to give thanks and salvation for the safe return of their child, who will turn eight next month.
Yet today, as another agonising anniversary looms for the McCanns, there is, surely, something missing?
The Express says “CHAT show host Piers Morgan is favourite to clinch the first major TV interview with Kate McCann to kick start a new global campaign to find her daughter”.
“First major TV interview”? What of all the other major interviews? Are we now at Day Zero in the hunt for Our Maddy?
MADELEINE McCann: You know yesterday’s Daily Mirror front-page news of the “JK ROWLING MADDY BOOK“? Greig Box-Turnbull told Mirror readers:
JK Rowling helped Kate McCann to write her book on missing daughter Madeleine.
We were not told how the journalist came about this information. But having a top-selling author linked to your book can’t harm sales, can it?
MADELEINE McCann: “JK Rowling’s MADDY BOOK”, is big news in the Daily Mirror, where the Harry Potter’s writer’s new work makes the paper’s front page.
Instantly we cry foul. What chance has Kate McCann of achieving stellar sales for her own Madeleine reader if a top writer like Rowling is entering an already pretty crowded marketplace?
Already this month, Leo Robson told New Statesman readers about King of the Badgers, a work of fiction, by Philip Hensher. In the book, a child goes missing:
The catalytic kidnapping plot, with its echoes of the Madeleine McCann case, is introduced feverishly through the gossip of the salivating yet finger-wagging Hanmouthites, but then gently developed; it is through David, talking to Mauro, that we find out “they’ve arrested the girl’s mother”, and it is a walk-on character, a family man with a dogging habit, who finds a crucial corpse.