There were so many options. "Iowans fire The Donald"? Nah. A "you're fired" joke is too predictable. "Trump is a loser?" It would've just been white noise. Too many people were already turning Trump's favorite insult around on Twitter.
That's the whole point. The Daily News has me (and presumably other readers, too) waiting eagerly to see what kind of explosive statement it will make next — kind of like Trump himself.
It was the latest in a series of attention-grabbing covers that have shifted the conversation around the struggling paper. Just a few months ago, after an aborted sale and sweeping layoffs, The News seemed to have completed its devolution from the model of a big-city tabloid to a battered symbol of the diminished state of America's newspapers. But the recent string of covers, which were all widely shared on social media, have sent a very different message — if not about the paper's long-term financial prospects, then at least about its continuing cultural relevance.
In that case, the Daily News better hope that "Dead clown walking" is an exercise in hyperbole. If Trump's campaign is actually dead, it will take some of the paper's best material to the grave with it.