By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

The Globe pays tribute to a classic New York Post headline. It didn’t quite work.

The Boston Globe today published an editorial admonishing the state for directing COVID relief to restaurants that have violated pandemic rules — including a strip club in Springfield that has run afoul of the FBI. When it came time to write the headline, though, someone decided to have some fun — and that’s where things went awry.

We begin with the inspiration for the Globe’s headline, the classic New York Post headline “Headless Body in Topless Bar,” so famous that when the editor who wrote it, Vincent Musetto, died in 2015, his genius was celebrated far and wide.

The Globe print headline: “Heedless bodies in topless bar.” Huh? Not quite sure that gets at it.

Click on it, though, and you get “Heedless bounty in topless bar,” which I’m guessing is what was intended.

The online headline, “State needs to hurry up with restaurant aid,” is serviceable but lacks panache.

So credit to the Globe for taking some chances. But I’m not sure it quite worked.

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4 Comments

  1. Thanks for pointing this out, Dan. As a longtime headline writer, including at one point at the Herald, I agree with your comment.

  2. Steve Ross

    Heedless Backlog?
    Not for Topless Bars!

    Hey, this isn’t easy on deadline!

  3. A noble effort, but a whiff nonetheless.

  4. Went right by me.

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