What I do think is true is that they certainly liked to cultivate friends in high places.
Again and again, whether it's Kate or Gerry, we see examples of the McCanns in full-blown, narcissistic "Treat me like I'm important" mode.
We saw this right from the moment they reported Maddie missing.
Having lucked out on the request for The Avengers to be called in, and with all the helicopter gunships busy doing other things, the next group to feel the wrath was the PJ - who can forget these kind words from Kate?
I was appalled by the treatment we received at the police station that day. Officers walked past us as if we weren’t there. Nobody asked how we were doing, whether we were OK or needed anything to eat or drink or to use the bathroom. Our child had been stolen and I felt as if I didn’t exist
When Gerry took to blogging about their every movement - beach, zoo, bowel - he was very careful to let us know when they encountered someone special or important. For those following the case, they could rest assured that Kate and Gerry, after an inauspicious start when they were assigned TweedleDee and TweedleDum, were being welcomed by lots of important people. Phew!
Pretty soon, names were being dropped as regularly as trousers at a Chippendales gig.
Ambassadors? Oh yes, we've lots of those; seven or so over the first few weeks, which conjurs up visions of an army of bewigged lackeys bearing huge trays of Ferrero Rocher.
Ministers? Yes, six of those!
Cardinals? They managed a couple, yes.
Kings? Well, not quite, but they did manage to press the flesh of a senior advisor to the King of Morocco, so they mentioned that, naturally!
Of course, the really big cheese was the Pope. Okay, there's only one Pope, but Gerry did mention him a lot. I mean, A LOT.
In fact, he dropped the Pope bomb ten times, the namedropping scamp.
Then, for a bit of variety, he treated us to three Pontiffs, a Holy Father and, as they were such good friends by this time, three Benedicts.
However, in case we were still in any doubt, Gerry assured us that, not only were they spending their time with the great and good, but the great and good were doting on them, when he shared this little anecdote with us:
We attended mass this morning and the Bishop had sent a very nice message that he and everyone else was praying for Madeleine. He also said that our attitude in this time of adversity was an example for others.
Now - I'm sure that was a very nice and well-intentioned message from the bishop, but let me just take a step back here - this is a couple who went out socialising with friends every evening, leaving their children at the mercy of any number of possible dangers. Their adversity was their own bloody fault, regardless of what you think happened to Madeleine
But that isn't really the point. The point is that Gerry felt it appropriate to recount this, smarming in the undeserved praise.
Because the aim of Gerry's blog was never to inform readers how the search was going. It was to create the impression that they were special, that they were important and that they were admired.
This, of course, wouldn't last. But more about that next time.