Rachel Johnson has taken on the huge challenge of revamping The Lady.

Rachel Johnson has just appeared on a Channel 4 programme, bravely tackling an almost impossible task, that of revamping a magazine started in 1885, The Lady.

My heart would quail at the very thought, because the hard core readership of The Lady obviously love the mag. as it was, and would deeply resent any changes.  The owner, a man called Charles was clearly a total coward, who wanted many of the existing staff to leave, but didn’t have the guts to do it himself,  so dumped this job on Rachel, as the new Editor.  He wanted circulation up but seemed to resist any changes.

Rachel’s idea of bringing in the Duchess of Devonshire as an agony aunt was brilliant, but I was horrified at some of the people she put on the cover.  Rachel is obviously too much of a lady and far too well brought up to know that in the Charm programme that Sharon Osborne fronted, Sharon punched one of the contestants in the head.  She also has a habit of sending a certain substance to people she doesn’t like in a gift wrapped box.  The only way I can describe this in a ladylike way is that it is the same substance that went towards the elephant dung stilettos  featured here earlier, except that it is Sharon’s own. (or sometimes her kids help out).  My source for this is Sharon’s biography, suitably titled Sharon Osborne – Extreme.

Sharon Osborne is possibly the last person who is suitable to be on the cover of  The Lady.  However, she has certainly led an exciting life, one of the highlights being when, out of his head on drink and drugs, her husband tried to strangle her.  I also do not think that Judy Finnegan is a good idea, nor anyone called Kirstie, but that is just my opinion, I would pick older women who are much more substantial, Judy Dench is a brilliant choice.  She is very talented, and also beautiful, as is Helen Mirren.  Elizabeth Jane Howard would be good too.  Vivienne Westwood, fantastic, also Tracey Emin.

For me, I would avoid the sexual jokes and references for The Lady.  There is a place for everything, and The Lady for me, isn’t it.  Maybe they should try to develop a style of humour specifically for the magazine, as risque writing can be hilarious, but  not in this context.  Handicrafts are  ladylike, couldn’t they introduce those, but in a modern way?  And how about bringing in some eco fashion?

Rachel Johnson is forthright, like her brother, it made for great t.v. Rachel, you are brave to take on such a big challenge, and you have managed to increase circulation, so hey, what do I know, probably absolutely nothing whatsoever.  If you ever leave The Lady, you should write a sitcom of your time there, the sexy posh totty brought in to save the antiquated Victorian relic while shocking the blimpish staff to the core would be hilarious.  And your lack of knowledge about certain episodes of Sharon O’s life proves you really are a lady.


  1. I agree. My mother was an avid reader of The Lady, as was her mother. (Not to my taste but very useful if you need nannies, nurses or staff).
    Can’t see why S.O. was on the front cover, wouldn’t have thought she’d read it.
    Think the eco fashion is an ace idea.
    Been years since I’ve even glanced at a copy of the mag, let alone bought it.
    Horse & Hound & Private Eye are my favs. Says it all. ;0

  2. Sharon O. is an appalling choice for The Lady. She has a mouth like a longshoreman, she is violent, she may be a successful manager in show business, but you need to read how she got there.

  3. Who is cyberboris? I haven’t time to look, I have my crystal balls to attend to.

  4. Hallo Madame Arcati! Cyberboris johnson is me, angie, angelneptunestar on twitter, worked in fashion and the media for years, published 5 books of my knitting designs in my heyday, one a best seller.

    Started my blog as I am a big fan of Boris and an ardent Tory, just to do my little bit for the cause. There are some pretty tough comments in your blog on The Lady scenario. Poor Rachel has an impossible task, she is damned if she does and damned if she doesn’t. To be honest, much as I admire her, I do think she went off on the wrong tack.

  5. I know poppet, Madame Arcati is a harsh environment created in my image. I’ll look you up on Twitter. Not that I care much for Twitter. x

  6. Madame Arcati, I deeply respect your psychic gifts and have leapt to put you on my blog roll so I can keep an eye on your naughty doings.

    Your blog does seem rather controversial, but those are always the best kind.

  7. ps. Rachel seemed to be getting pretty ticked off with her dilemma and seemed about to blow her stack, we all know that feeling when we are stuck in insupportable situations.

    A book about the crazy situation would be a good idea, in case The Lady implodes any time soon, but even better, Rachel should write a sitcom. This has all the elements of a winner, the sexy posh totty coming in to save the Victorian relics stuck in a backwater and shocking them all to the core as sales nosedive and then rise out of sight.

  8. The programme was very funny but Rachel seemed out of touch, even though she is obviously a lot of fun.

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