Monday, October 01, 2007
Anne Robinson and her weakest link - boastfulness
I long ago lost count of the number of times Anne Robinson and husband John Penrose split up over affairs (hers and his) and god-knows-what-else. When I interviewed her about 12 years ago she told me the marriage was over because he couldn't deal with her success. This was before The Weakest Link here and in the US rocketed her into the showbiz stratosphere. Men, she claimed, cannot cope with highly successful wives -it undermines their machismo. Probably some truth there, but Anne is - like most successful journalists or journalists made good - boastful and self-regarding, always calibrating others against her own achievements and pushiness (Andrew Neil is another good example of this syndrome). I sometimes wondered whether Anne never let Penrose forget who was the great success and who not in their union. Now they are to divorce: the newspapers have made up the £30m he is due from her "£60m" fortune - he will get nothing like. Anne's great virtue is public frankness so I look forward to the tell-all book or magazine interview in which Penrose will be reminded whom he can thank for his good fortune.