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Onion to People's Daily: 'Exemplary reportage' on 'sexiest man'

November 27, 2012|By Amy Hubbard
  • North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with his wife, Ri Sol Ju, was called 2012's sexiest guy by the Onion. People's Daily agreed.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with his wife, Ri Sol Ju, was called 2012's… (Associated Press )

The Onion declared North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un the "Sexiest Man Alive," and People's Daily said yes, yes he is.

The Chinese state news outlet missed the point entirely, which media everywhere gleefully pointed out.  "The Onion dupes again," said U.S. News & World Report. "We've saved the headline for posterity," crowed Shanghaiist.

The Onion, after all, is a satirical news site. Tuesday's headlines included "42 Million Dead in Bloodiest Black Friday Weekend on Record," "Reporter Investigates Claims He Ruined His Family's Thanksgiving Dinner" and "Garrison Keillor Fully Deflates After Massive Sigh."

But the People's Daily took the opportunity to trumpet the North Korean leader and dedicated 55 pages of photos to him.

This wasn't the first time China's state press was fooled by the Onion, as the Los Angeles Times reported. A 2002 article saying Congress would leave Washington, D.C., if it didn’t get a better building was picked up by the Beijing Evening News and reported as straight news.

Perhaps now the People's Daily will realize the Onion never removes  tongue from cheek.

The Onion on Tuesday updated its Kim Jong Un article to say that more coverage on the Onion's Sexiest Man Alive 2012 could be found at People's Daily in China -- "a proud Communist subsidiary of The Onion, Inc. 

"Exemplary reportage, comrades."

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