The Sun on Sunday is coming! Yes, the much-rumoured tabloid newspaper to replace the fallen News of the World was announced a week ago and this weekend will see its first issue be sent to newsagents, supermarkets and whatever other type of building stocks a newspaper these days.
Credit should go to Murdoch’s crew for publicising it well. Staff have been working on the paper since the start of the year and no sooner since it was announced it was given a release date in the near future, complete with simple, bold and clear TV adverts to boot. It was the newspaper equivalent of when Radiohead announced their seventh album, In Rainbows.
That said, like the pre-release buzz for In Rainbows, no one really knows how good the newspaper will be until it drops though the letterbox. Columnists will include TV chef James Martin, ex-footballer, manager and now attempted pundit Roy Keane and former Strictly Come Dancing contestant Nancy Dell’Olio. You might be thinking that Dell’Olio is an odd pick for a columnist but don’t forget she has been a guest on Newsnight which surely gives her the credible verification you need. On that basis, expect them to sign up Katie Price in a matter of weeks.
Who will buy the Sun on Sunday? The answer is simple: an awful lot of people. The News of the World‘s last full month of circulation hit 2,667,428 according to ABC figures. For the Sun, even a million is a hopeful initial target. It’ll take a bit of time to reach the lofty heights of its predecessor but the longer the Leveson inquiry drags on without notable incident, the more readers it will inevitably pick up.
The biggest clue of how well it will do is the way it’s already attracting plenty of hyperbole from excited readers of the Sun. Reader Lucy Daley, 24, of Lewisham, London exclaimed at the bottom of this article that “this country needs you on Sunday.”
Ignoring the over-eager nature of that statement, it shows that there is an audience for the Sun on Sunday. It won’t appeal to everyone but, whether you like it or not, chances are it’ll be here to stay for a while.