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John Gotti

You Talkin' to U.S.? We were traveling in Europe when the King of New York bit it last June. Needless to say, we weren't disappointed by the European reaction to his death. The Europress managed to turn Gotti into an American icon on the level of Elvis and Marilyn?and the thuggish archetypal counterpart of today's U.S. corporate malefactors. Yes, there were the usual tumbling assortments of cultural cliche and artifact?the Guardian went for The Sopranos and The Godfather, Le Monde plumped for Scorsese. (Germany's Spiegel even mined The Smoking Gun.) Hell, Gotti's death was big news in Belgrade's newspapers and magazines?and that city teems with a mob violence reminiscent of Chicago in the 1930s. Let's just say that the Dapper Don would've been proud of the international impact that he had at the final curtain.