Today in Madonna History: January 15, 1996

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On January 15 1996, Madonna appeared on the cover of People magazine, with the title: Madonna faces down her stalker in court.

Here’s an excerpt from the issue:

At first glance, it looked like any other Madonna-centric media event, with scrambling news crews and ogling fans swarming around her black limousine. But as soon as she entered courtroom 116 in the L.A. Criminal Courts Building on Jan. 3, it became clear that this was no ordinary Madonna performance. Inside, a jury listened intently as the normally flamboyant singer, 37, dressed with subdued elegance in a black, knee-length suit, soberly delivered testimony against a 38-year-old drifter accused of stalking and threatening to kill her. “He was there to take me away; he wanted me to be his wife,” she said in measured tones. “If he couldn’t have me [he told my secretary], he would slit my throat, from ear to ear.”

Madonna’s hour-long testimony may bring to some kind of conclusion an unsettling series of events that began when Robert Dewey Hoskins was first found hanging around the singer’s Hollywood Hills estate. Hoskins showed up at Madonna’s home last April 7, jumping a security wall before being ejected from the 3.5-acre grounds by a private guard. (Madonna was not home at the time.) Returning from a bike ride with her personal trainer the following day, Madonna encountered Hoskins at her gate. “He looked homeless, dirty; his clothes were wrinkled, and he had a crazy look in his eyes,” she testified. His stare, she said, was “creepy…deranged. It was scary.” Hoskins said nothing but left a note that said, “I love you. You will be my wife for keeps.”

The appearances by Hoskins were unsettling enough, Madonna says, to persuade her to sell the estate, once the home of gangster Bugsy Siegel. Seven weeks later, while Madonna was in Florida, where she also owns a home, Hoskins was back, this time carrying a four-inch wooden heart with the oddly misspelled inscription “Love To My Wife Madnna.”

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Today in Madonna History: December 25, 1989

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In the December 25, 1989 issue of People magazine, Madonna was named one of the 25 Most Intriguing People In The World.

Madonna and Warren. Madonna and Sean. Madonna and Sandra. Madonna and Pepsi. The Material Girl, the Boy Toy, Papa Don’t Preach, the stigmata debacle, a used bustier that sold at Sotheby’s for $3,750…   So what is it about this 31-year-old woman with a mole on her upper lip that aroused such curiosity, even among, for example, Belgians, who bought 62,656 copies of her Like a Prayer LP this year? Only one person can approach that question with both the authority and seriousness that it deserves, and that person, of course, is Dr. Joyce Brothers. “Madonna is a sexy person for our time,” says Brothers. “She’s independent and on her own two feet. Women like her because they don’t feel she’s a victim. Men like her because she’s sexy, but not straight out, like in Penthouse. She is childlike and innocent but at the same time naughty. Madonna,” concludes the good doctor, “is walking that line very successfully.”   Thank you, Dr. Brothers. And thank you, Madonna Louise Ciccone.

Today in Madonna History: December 14, 1987

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On December 14 1987, Madonna and Sean Penn appeared on the cover of People magazine.

Everyone Said It Wouldn’t Last… …And It Didn’t. After Two Years of Marriage, Madonna and Sean Penn Go Their Separate Ways.  

Well, you can’t blame Judge John Merrick. It was Merrick, now a retired justice of the peace, who performed the August 1985 marriage of Madonna Louise Ciccone and Sean “KO” Penn. “I felt they were serious about their vows,” says Merrick. “I remember a line from the ceremony: ‘Although there will be times that your moods may falter, and you’ll question each other’s motives, the faith and love that you share will help to show that your inconsistency is only for the moment.’ ”   Trouble is, for Sean, 27, and Madonna, 29, that moment seemed to persist for a little over two years. Now, after 27 months of holy matrimony and unholy acrimony, the material girl and her rebel without a pause are positively, absolutely, this-time-they’re-not-kidding headed for that crowded community called Splitsville. “The marriage is definitely over,” says Madonna’s spokesperson, Liz Rosenberg. Seconds Penn’s publicist, Lois Smith, “The two of them have called off the marriage.”

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Today in Madonna History: September 17, 2001

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On September 17 2001, Madonna appeared on the cover of People magazine as part of the Best and Worst Dressed feature.

People magazine had this to say about Madonna’s great fashion choices in 2001:

Madonna wore midriff-baring Dolce & Gabbana cowgirl pants to Europe’s MTV Music Awards last fall—just three months after giving birth to son Rocco. Britain’s Times later praised the star for baring “her potbelly” during her concert tour, declaring, “The truly hip are taking a leaf out of Madonna’s book and learning to love their tummies.”

Today in Madonna History: January 8, 2001

 

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On January 8 2001, Madonna and Guy Ritchie’s wedding was featured on the cover of People magazine with the headline: Kilt by Association Amid Tears, Tiaras and Scottish Tartan, Madonna and Guy Ritchie Baptize Baby Rocco and Tie the Knot.

Here’s a snippet of the article inside:

Shortly  after 6:30 on the evening of December 22, the guests were invited, without fanfare, to take their seats. Guided by the glow of hundreds of candles, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rupert Everett, Donatella Versace, a kilt-clad Sting and some 55 others gathered near the foot of the grand staircase in the Great Hall of Scotland’s 19th-century Skibo Castle. As the skirls of a lone bagpiper gave way to the music of French pianist Katia Labèque and a local organist, the wedding ceremony of Madonna Louise Ciccone, 42, and film director Guy Ritchie, 32, began.   Madonna’s 4-year-old daughter, Lourdes, shoeless and draped in a long ivory dress with short sleeves and a high neck, led the processional. Descending the staircase—its balustrade laced with ivy and white orchids—she tossed handfuls of red rose petals from a basket, almost exhausting her supply by the time she reached the front row, where she sat in her nanny’s lap. “As soon as they saw Madonna’s daughter throwing rose petals,” says a guest, “people were crying.”

Today in Madonna History: December 28, 1992

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On December 28 1992, Madonna was named one of the 25 Most Intriguing People In The World For 1992 by People magazine.

Here’s what People had to say about Madonna in 1992:

The Movies! The Album! The Naughty Pictures! Once Again Madonna Was Everywhere, Shouting, “Look at Me—Every Inch of Me!”

Intriguing: suggests an air of mystery. Madonna: does everything in public but floss her teeth.

Intriguing: wrapped in enigma. Madonna: not wrapped in anything.

Intriguing: means doesn’t appear on-camera in romantic encounters with Evian water bottles. Madonna: does.

OK—so what’s so intriguing about somebody who lets you know that her lovers require a five-cent deposit?

For one thing, she made ya look. Consider Sex, the photo book in which she had her picture taken doing everything but blushing. Besides proving that a naked Madonna could arch backward over a pinball machine without mussing her hair, it also pushed the envelope out to the size of a circus tent. And when the crowds came pouring in, there she was at center ring, cracking her whip.

It only served her purposes that Sex earned sniffy reviews like “The Empress Has No Clothes” and that it was banned in places such as Japan and Ireland. Coming on the heels of her summer film hit, A League of Their Own, the fuss over her book helped to launch her new album, Erotica, and primed the movie audience for her next assault on their sensibilities, Body of Evidence. Her success at getting the world to subsidize her sexual preoccupations—to say nothing of her mammoth self-absorption—is what makes her worth the $60 million deal she cut this year with Time Warner (the parent company of PEOPLE). Madonna is not the first star to find the bucks in buck nakedness. But no one before her has capitalized so well on human willingness to have our fears and desires repackaged and sold back to us.

Yet this most public of women still strains to be a mystery. This year she went through more faces than Lon Chaney—one minute in Baby Jane pigtails, a cupcake from hell; the next in sour milkmaid gear, Heidi with a mean streak. Her changing gallery of faces is one reason that she’s a sex symbol who inspires a lot of heavy breathing from intellectuals. One landmark of the 1992 publishing list—The Madonna Connection: Representational Politics, Sub-cultural Identities and Cultural Theory. You didn’t get this sort of thing for Petula Clark.

But does she really throw such a mysterious light on our culture? More likely it’s just the glinting gears of a giant publicity machine. Yet the sheer magnitude of her achievement in that regard is, well, intriguing. And the grinding of those gears is surely too loud to be ignored. “I’m a revolutionary,” she once sighed. “And yes. it’s a burden.”

Sometimes it’s a burden for her, we sigh in return, and sometimes for us.

Madonna was a busy woman in 1992! What did you enjoy most? A League Of Their Own? This Used To Be My Playground? Erotica? Sex? Body Of Evidence? 

Today in Madonna History: December 11, 1989

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On December 11 1989, Madonna was featured on the cover of People magazine as one of the best-dressed celebrities of 1989.

Topping the list of the best dressed were Princess Diana, Kevin Costner, John Candy, Jacqueline Onassis, Mick Jagger, Angela Lansbury, Madonna, Marlon Brando, Michelle Pfeiffer and Mel Gibson.

People listed Bruce Springsteen, Kim Basinger, Sean Young, Elizabeth Taylor, Rod Stewart, Roseanne Barr, Jerry Hall, Geena Davis, Kathleen Sulilvan and Prince Andrew as the worst dressed.

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