(Image: EPA/Andy Rain)

When Prince Philip died last Friday, it was a moment the world’s media had long been waiting for — the Duke of Edinburgh, 99, had been looking particularly cadaverous for months, if not years. The obits were ready -- though, as Charlie Lewis reports in Tips and Murmurs today, some were missing vital facts, and others had some embarrassing typos.

Still, the death of Philip — husband of the Queen, World War II veteran and a man who spent most of his time in the public eye going around with a foot firmly in his mouth — brought forward a frenzy of media activity over the weekend. For a man whose main contribution to recent Australian public life was accelerating the downfall of an unpopular prime minister and getting CV-stacking high schoolers to go camping, it all seemed a bit much.

Sycophantic coverage

Over the weekend, TV networks rolled out the big guns for their coverage of the duke’s long-awaited demise. On the ABC, as well as the commercial channels, star programmers returned to work a weekend shift, adding a bit of gloss to coverage that was pretty much wall-to-wall.