It has been compared to a Greek tragedy, labeled the greatest stab operation of all time, and called a period drama “with balayage and Botox.”
everything in the Wagatha Christie trial has been forensically analyzed.
There have been interviews with the courtroom artist about those unflattering sketches, cost reports of all the outfits worn, and podcasts about boat trips to the North Sea.
There has even been a passionate plea from poor old Peter Andre asking if anyone could be so kind not to compare his penis to a chipolata.
But at the end of one of the most anticipated trials in showbiz history, are we any closer to truly understanding the world of WAGS?
On the one hand, everyone in the world knows that we have better things to do than listen to two very rich women, whose husbands play football, argue over Insta stories.
But then again, did you hear what Rebekah allegedly said to that FA official? And how do you manage to delete so many WhatsApp messages?
Some believe the closing statements in the case mark “the end of an era.”
The Daily Telegraph declared “RIP WAGS”, as it ended in the Supreme Court yesterday.
But in reality, the term “WAG” and “WAG culture” is a thing of the past. Were it not for the “Wagatha Christie” pun, the use of WAG today would be about as current as pulling out a Motorola flip phone.
One of the reasons this case has been so fascinated is that it harks back to a nostalgia for an era we currently have a collective obsession with – the 2000s.
“WAG culture peaked in the mid-2000s, and we’ve been having 2000s nostalgia lately,” says 2FM pop culture expert and host of the Housewives And Me podcast, Conor Behan.
“Both people who raved about that era and people who look back and see what didn’t work…I think we’re almost reaching the pinnacle of ’80s nostalgia.”
Many who followed the process did not pay the same attention to Wayne’s evolving career as a Derby County manager, or to the launch of Coleen’s children’s clothing line.
“There’s an element of ‘Where are they now?'” says Conor. “It feels like you’re checking in with someone who’s been a pop culture figure.”
When Coleen Rooney posted the details of her scavenger hunt on Instagram three years ago, it was explosive. It shocked us back and we knew it would eventually come to a head. †[The trial] feels like season five of a show you’ve been watching for years and now you’re going to the finale,” said Conor Behan.
TV producer Debbie O’Donnell agrees. “It feels like reality TV,” she says. You couldn’t write it.”
If this is the grand finale, when did season one start?
Let’s go back to 2006 and to the quaint and quiet German town of Baden-Baden.
The World Cup was in full swing, but sports coverage was secondary for many of us.
The real story was what the wives and girlfriends (WAGs) were up to.
Coleen McLaughlin, Victoria Beckham, Alex Curran and Cheryl Tweedy were dubbed “Visa card hooligans,” while stories of their table dancing and shopping spree became red fodder.
There were endless stories about the sun-filled vacations these women spent and the $1,000 handbags they carried with them.
But even then, those at the center of the media frenzy weren’t fond of the term.
“It’s foolish to lump us all together like that,” Coleen said in 2010.
“We’re all just individuals getting along and doing our own thing, and we deserve to be treated as individuals.”
By the time Rebekah Vardy met and married Jamie Vardy in 2016, the days of Baden-Baden were long gone.
With the rise of social media, there was already a crucial shift in the symbiotic relationship between wives and girlfriends and the press.
Irish freelance photographer Mark Doyle still remembers that shift.
When Coleen visited Ireland in 2012 to promote her Littlewoods collection, she stopped for a drink at O’Donoghue’s pub on Dublin’s Merrion Row.
Coleen stared at the press photographers by sharing a selfie of herself enjoying a glass of Guinness. “It would be rude not to,” she wrote.
“We had her walk from the bar to the taxi when the shot was that she was drinking a glass of Guinness,” he says. “The smartphone was a killer.”
But for some celebrities or celebrity husbands, it gave them agency and control.
“Now you take the picture. You post a picture of yourself… so you determine the story… [celebrities] bypass the need to be inside Elle or Fashion or whatever,” said Conor Behan.
Our interest and fascination with who celebrities and famous football players are dating has not diminished.
In fact, we may be more invested than ever in the details of their lives.
The Wagatha Christie case was so poignant because it showed that despite that power shift, some celebrities still feel the need to control the coverage of themselves.
Aside from the brilliance of their million-pound lifestyle, the issues at the heart of the process – betrayal, deceit, betrayal and pride – are highly recognizable.
As for what the two women have to gain?
“This case should never have gone to trial,” said Neville Cox, a defamation law professor and expert.
“I Can’t See What It’s For” [Vardy]… You are suing to protect your reputation. Is she really restoring her good name? Or has it been irreparably damaged by what emerged during the cross-examination?”
Many believe that Coleen has come out well: determined, smart and astute.
She’s even said to have struck a deal with Netflix on the matter — maybe by the time it’s released our 2000s nostalgia will have abated, or maybe it’ll be an incentive not to cancel your subscription.