If your heart sank this morning when you encountered part one of the Globe’s seven-day, all-known-facts package on Mitt Romney, imagine how we felt at Media Nation Central. After all, you don’t have to read it. I do. And though today’s nearly-5,000-word entry, by Neil Swidey and Michael Paulson, is surprisingly sprightly, the purpose of such presidential profiles is strictly defense: by next Saturday, if the Globe has done its job, there won’t be a single Mitt tidbit for the national media to pick up on that the Globe didn’t have first.
Online, what’s notable is how far the Globe has come since its big John Kerry special of a few years ago. I can no longer find the Kerry stuff in order to make a direct comparison, but the Romney package strikes me as far richer, with a Web-only Paulson story on young Romney’s near-fatal car accident in France, where he was a Mormon missionary; an interactive Google map of France; a Michael Kranish piece on Romney’s draft deferral; a slew of photos and documents, even one of Romney’s report cards (PDF); and several videos, including this fairly creepy look at how Romney’s appearance has changed over the years. Given this cynical foolishness, I especially enjoyed a video of Romney speaking French.
Just remember: Packages like this are meant more to be admired than read. I’ll be reading. And if find anything startling, I’ll be sure to let you know.