Ten years that shook the world!*

*Well, our world, anyway. So permit us a few minutes of celebration. Hey, it tastes better than the cheap cake we were gonna serve.

The first issue: July 15, 1998.

First issue: July 15, 1998

In an early instance of the creative visual thinking that set the Weekly apart, writer Ben Malisow and cartoonist Andy Hartzell collaborate on a “gubernatorial campaign sketchbook” of Jan Jones’ campaign for the state’s highest office (August 5, 1998)

In the January 27, 2000, issue, the Weekly was ahead of the curve in an article about the rise of SUVs: “The cars going into America’s junkyards today are more fuel-efficient than those in the showrooms, which was hardly Congress’ intent when it passed the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) law in 1975.”

Joe Schoenmann reports from the melee-ridden streets of Los Angeles, outside the Democratic National Convention. The memorable cover: A black-and-white shot of a gas-mask-wearing protestor under the headline “The Battle of Los Angeles.” (August 24, 2000)

Responding to a sense of urgency and flux in the local arts scene, specifically in the Downtown arts district, the Weekly sets up a lengthy roundtable discussion featuring gallery owners Jim Stanford and Jerry Misko, then-CAC president Ginger Bruner and Diane Bush. (September 7, 2000)

When John Ensign won’t cooperate in a series of interviews (which also include his opponent in the race for the Senate seat, Ed Bernstein), the Weekly crew unearths old quotes on similar topics, and sometimes brazenly speculates on what position Ensign would take, if he were talking. Those speculations no doubt make the senator wish he’d broken his vow of silence. (October 5, 2000)

Seized by the whimsies, the Weekly compiles one of the longest, most comprehensive “best-of” packages this paper has ever run—devoted entirely to the best of Searchlight. Really, it went on for pages and pages. (October 12, 2000)

For several years it seems hardly two issues can go by without a writer or guest columnist complaining about the soullessness of suburbia, growth and the corporatization of culture. Randomly selected example from the October 26, 2000, issue: “Lost in the rows of orange roofs is a sense of community and connectedness …”

Molly Brown checks out the swingers scene and gets hopped on by an amorous woman. “Suddenly, this woman—blond, wearing a purple bodystocking and feather boa, climbs on top of me and starts to lick and kiss my neck and face.” Brown demurs. “She hops right off. Then mutters something about how I’m a journalist. ‘How do you know that?’ ‘Who else would fucking dress like this?’” (September 6, 2001)

Joe Schoenmann writes a Weekly classic about how a local hospital lost a body. (November 1, 2001)

Damon Hodge digs up old blaxploitation icon Dolemite (Rudy Ray More) for a classic Weekly cover piece. (June 27, 2002)

The Killers - before they were famous.

The Weekly has the first published interview with The Killers, anywhere, back when it was a three-piece (Flowers, Ronnie Vannucci and guitarist Tavian Go). “I do my own makeup. I’m proud of that.” –Flowers (September 26, 2002)

In advance of a production of The Vagina Monologues, the Weekly gathers six women to talk about their vaginas. (Sample: If your vagina got dressed, what would it wear? “A tweed sweater. And a hat.”) (October 10, 2002)

The October 31, 2002, cover story on demonic activity and exorcisms in Las Vegas. This stands in for the many, many pieces the Weekly has done over the years on fringe religion, paranormal phenomena, ghostly manifestations, UFO visitations, celestial sightings, cults, Raelians, energy vortices, witchery, magick and similar off-the-mainstream topics.

November 14, 2002: Josh Bell plunges into the world of Internet dating for his first cover story.

January 16, 2003: We ask a question that still hasn’t been answered: “What Are Teachers Worth? Educator, Baby Sitter. Social Worker. Would YOU do all that for $27,384?”

For the February 20, 2003, edition, we send reporter Joe Schoenmann to Carson City to profile then-powerful state Sen. Bob Beers.

Also in the February 20 issue, Kate Silver writes the Weekly classic “Safe Room, My Ass,” in which she seals and duct-tapes herself into a “safe room” during a period of anthrax anxiety. “I’ve started feeling light-headed,” she writes. “Or am I just dreading the inevitable peeing in a bucket?”

March 20, 2003: The neathage issue. In which we pose a cover model with the bottoms of her breasts swelling from beneath her skimpy top, and do our best to popularize the term “neathage.” “It’s like cleavage, but lower,” we explain inside. This is the official starting point of our infamous Hot Chick phase.

In a memorably revealing essay, Steve Bornfeld explores the psychology of bullies and victims, using his own experiences. (October 16, 2003)

A high point in the art of cover text is reached with this: “Ten things we love about Jane Ann Morrison’s new column. Page 85.” It’s an 84-page issue. Not all readers get the joke. (October 30, 2003)

The Weekly is glossy. Hurray!

November 6, 2003: The Weekly goes glossy!

Steve Bornfeld weighs in with a stellar profile of Tony Curtis, titled “The last profile of Tony Curtis you will ever need,” in which TC shares some of his poetry. (November 27, 2003)

In a Weekly classic, writers Richard Abowitz and Kate Silver travel to Colorado City, Arizona, for double-team coverage of upheavals in the tightly knit, suspicious polygamist community. (February 5, 2004)

Contributing editor Richard Abowitz does his best to spend 24 hours in a strip club. (June 3, 2004)

Sonja, our relationships columnist, recounts a rape.

In one of our most controversial, talked-about, loved and hated cover stories, Sonja—our popular relationships columnist, known both for her sexy ways and for agonizing about the state of her singlehood—recounts a date rape. (June 24, 2004)

The Hot Chick Era, while not official over—there are some iconic instances of the form yet to come—is clearly dwindling. In a January 6, 2005, letter to the editor, a reader writes, “The articles are still entertaining and the exposes intriguing … but where’s the eye candy from the cover? … Is everything OK? I mean, if it’s a religious thing or something, well, OK … but if you’re trying to ‘not offend,’ then, well, that’s kind of lame.” –Letter to the editor from Ed Marshall

In January 2005, onetime Weekly cover model Destiny Davis is named Playboy’s Miss January.

In the January 20, 2005, Weekly, Stacy J. Willis explores the wounded lives of domestic-violence victims.

For “The True Story of Shiloh Edsitty, Stabbing Victim,” a Weekly classic (January 27, 2005), then-freelancer (and eventual staffer) Joshua Longobardy pays his way to upstate New York to interview a young boy who survived a horrific crime.

The cover line "The new Mr. Vegas?" made it into Mr. Beacher's ads, sans question mark.

The February 24, 2005, issue contains two stellar profiles: of attention-hog Jeff Beacher, by Richard Abowitz, and of UNLV basketball coach Lon Kruger, by Greg Blake Miller. Beacher would take our cover line—“The new Mr. Vegas?”—remove the question mark and use it in his ads.

A high point in headlines over letters to the editor is reached in the March 3, 2005, Weekly: “There comes a point when it’s no longer productive to print grammatically hilarious letters from Hilary Duff fans without correcting the errors. We have not reached that point.”

Xania Woodman debuts as nightlife columnist. (March 3, 2005)

A low point in letters-page filler is reached when we run this note, received by the editor: “Can we please reschedule lunch for next Thursday or Friday? I had a client lunch come up.” (March 10, 2005)

Damon Hodge talks to a violence victim in a story that opens with a full-page shot of the victim showing her missing teeth. (March 24, 2005)

Damon Hodge reports from “the worst neighborhood in Las Vegas,” a crime-ridden part of town near the Boulevard Mall. (August 11, 2005)

Josh Bell examines the state of movie-going in a wide-ranging think piece. (December 1, 2005)

On August 25, 2006, Penn Jillette appears on our cover, soap in mouth, talking about The Aristocrats.

Spencer Patterson profiles Lon Bronson and the demise of the Vegas lounge scene. (July 27, 2006)

A high point in offbeat movie-review headlines is achieved in the August 17, 2006, review of Little Miss Sunshine: “Sunshine word search: Find these adjectives in this review: Stupid. Ignorant. Clueless. Godawful. Pandering. Witless. Craven.” (They’re all there, by the way.)

Asked by the Weekly about negative reviews of her show at the Flamingo, Toni Braxton says in the August 24, 2006, issue, “But I’m a black woman, so I expect it. I’m used to people writing negative things about me. We’ve been taught from babies to accept prejudism and for people to be skeptical because of our race and because I’m female, so I don’t care.”

For the August 31, 2006, Nightlife Issue, Xania Woodman profiles four sets of brothers who are setting the tone for Vegas nightlife.

Ten years after Tupac’s slaying, Damon Hodge confronts the rap artist’s divided legacy by examining his own deeply conflicted feelings about him. A Weekly classic. (September 7, 2006)

April 5 and 12, 2007: Julie Seabaugh’s sweeping two-part oral history of Sam Kinison.

For the April 26, 2007, Music Issue, Spencer Patterson ranks the 25 most legendary concerts in Vegas history (Beatles, Elvis and Led Zep all the way down to Red Hot Chili Peppers).

The May 10, 2007 issue contains the epic retelling of the “The Rise and Fall of Crazy Horse Too,” by Joshua Longobardy.

Julie Seabaugh spends a long weekend in the desert for an epic story about partying and cracking jokes with Doug Stanhope and his band of freedom-loving comedians. (May 31, 2007)

Granted unprecedented access to his subject, Spencer Patterson writes a long, probing profile of Palms owner George Maloof. (September 27, 2007)

In a Weekly classic, Stacy J. Willis writes movingly about a formerly homeless woman whose life is given direction by her intense fandom for Barry Manilow. (September 18, 2008)


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