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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

You Have to be Crazy to Want Celebrity

The same old story, different name of the obsession. It doesn't matter really who it is in the world of celebrity, apparently it's a part of the human brain anatomy to create a surreal environment. Following a few different fan groups along the lines of a scientific experiment has provided me an inside view of the beast the celebrity must deal with; one thing that maintains similarity - media and fan reaction.

Media supplies the fuel that feeds the fans' reactions with stories or rumors following each other from one viral gossip site to another like a round robin game of Chinese Whispers. Each translation carrying more fantasy and an increasing sense of fact no matter if true or not. Meanwhile the celebrity of focus is left trying to scrabble some semblance of truth from the mess the media rats posing as journalists have created for them.

Likely this facet of almost immediate notoriety something guys like Taylor Hicks and Robert Pattinson had to fast track, both hit celebrity with a speed akin to a flash of light. Taylor Hicks became a household name and a pivotal force within a matter of weeks on the FOX reality show, American Idol. Rob Pattinson, hit the track after securing the role of tragic hero, lovestruck vampire, Edward Cullen, in the Stephanie Meyers' book to movie series.

One of Taylor Hicks biggest challenges in the media has to do with the very thing he's set himself as a career path - his singing. The gossip hags within the on-line vortex found early on if they wield insults and criticisms about the guy's singing, their articles get hit hard. On one hand, the more something is said the more readers think it carries truth, the other hand, after a while those who continue to carry the story feel elevated, hip and in the know. Besides it is always more interesting and enjoyable to make fun of others lest you are the target or the butt of the joke. Problem here, this sort of thing creates it's own demons that can be a real buzz-kill for an artist's career path.

Fans too are targeted. By insulting the fans following the celebrity, intention to make that celeb look less desirable. The nuttier the fans portrayed, the more unattractive they may seem to be in pictures creates a more insulting and demeaning environment for the person they are following. Word catches on, readers read or look at photos of the folks media castigating and are given pause to think how they might not want to be a part of that crowd.

Most of the time media mongrels place fans following a celebrity in either the teen-age hormonally driven mindless bracket or the bored house wife category. I don't care if the celeb is Joe Jonas, Taylor Hicks or Rob Pattinson or a Michael Buble', the fans are thrown together in one of the two groups, or both.

In the case of Taylor Hicks, the 'in' thing concerning his fans: cast him as adored by plump females largely hanging in the menopausal crowd. You know, like perhaps an elderly Auntie who thinks a wild night out is dinner at Luby's and Bingo. Can't tell you how often I've read about the "Grannies" knitting him sweaters and scarves. Like anyone under fifty can't knit. Okay, I can't knit. Regardless of truth or untruth or really who cares how old someone is to enjoy music. This slant merely provides the media more fuel to attempt to sound witty, make snide comments and get internet attention. That is one thing important in the internet world since so many writing positions are not financially very viable and the attention can work for them on several levels.

Heckler Spray.com writer, Stuart Heritage, one of the baddest boys when it comes to dissing celebs, he's also one of my favorite celeb bashers, notably one of the funniest to read. "Taylor Hicks Unexplainably Labelled ‘Hot’" an article written by Heritage the year Hicks' won Idol. Heritage draws the reader into the piece with, "Where did all the hot guys go? You know the ones we mean; the slightly overweight, prematurely grey hot guys that can't manage to get through a rudimentary sentence without whooping like a Tourettes sufferer walking barefoot over Lego. Right girls?".

In this piece, Heritage said, "Taylor Hicks In Producer Lawsuit Frenzy" says, "It's hard enough winning a televised talent show like American Idol when you have the outward appearance of a fully functioning cognitive human being - so imagine how tough it must be for Taylor Hicks". I mean damn, people, that's funny. Thing is outside the humor those seeds of doubt hit the reader, sprouting ideas such as 'hell, he's just not cool, he is spazzy' he's an idiot.

Guys like Heritage are now running amuck with a viral campaign going on against Robert Pattinson that really stinks. Google alert after alert reads the same material as the entertainment sloughers vie for the funniest take on the idea that perhaps handsome Rob isn't fond of bathing. I traced the first of this rumor to a male writer; in fact overall it is the male entertainment writers deriving the most glee in casting Pattinson in a bad light, or in this case, in a bad smell. I say don't hate him because he's beautiful.

"Twilight" is currently shooting in Vancover, and this article in the Vancover Sun discusses Canadian singer Adaline's chance recent encounter with Pattinson at a club. Adaline said, following her brief moment spent with Pattinson, "In the end it was lovely to meet the man who so well depicted the character so many people love. I can tell you two things: 1) Even though Robert is not Edward, he has the same intense stare in real life. It took me off guard. 2) He smells lovely. The stinky thing is a bunch of tabloid garbage."

Put that in your bong pipe Heritage, et al, and smoke it.

Another viral story that is in high repeat mode, Miley Cyrus' comment about Pattinson not being liked for himself - rather the fans mistaking him for his movie character, Edward. (Not really that unlikely.) Naturally Heritage gives it a go to put fresh spin on it and liven up Cyrus' statements in "OMG! Miley Cyrus Totally Doesn't Love Robert Pattinson! Etc!". Stuart shares with the readers, "Everyone knows that Robert Pattinson has two main target markets - hysterical teenage girls and lonley (sic) old women.

So Miley Cyrus should be perfect for him. Miley’s got a little bit of both Robert Pattinson fans in her - the enthusiasm and breathless cadence of a teenage girl, plus the speaking voice and dead-eyed world-weary cynicism of very, very old lady."
Hilarious, true but yet spookily accurate descriptor of Miley considering in public appearances evidence of a typical girl of her age sorely lacking.

One thing I have read extensively since I became a part of the Taylor Hicks' fan base, the fans upset about how he's portrayed, that he's selected out of the world of celebs and singularly castigated and insulted. One thing I can confirm, that is not the case, the kind of abuse Taylor's hit with is very similar to what many in the bright glare of celebrity experience. So take heart Soul Patrollers, (or just plain ol' fans of Taylor Hicks), at least he's not being accused of smelling like a 'sweaty tramp's dirty rectum like Pattinson.

(That poor kid's transfixed.)


  1. jerseyirish2:25 PM

    Sunny, I know Taylor is not the only one who is the butt of many jokes and non flattering statements, some I find amusing and some just very distasteful. You know as well as I do it is the negatives that stick in peoples minds. Has he made all the right choices, in his mind I believe he probably has and bottom line thats all that really matters what he thinks. I have read that the post Idol CD they really don't have much freedom as to what will be on it, it is dictated to them what songs will go and which won't. I know you were not pleased with TD overall, but I found it to be an easy listening enjoyable well presented CD, is it his best, I think Taylor has more to come this is just the begining of his artistic freedom.

    I read the comments about Robert found them to be cheap shots also. Here is a young guy making his way and someone puts that type of comment up about him, unfortunetley as I said above that is what most will remember the negative things said. Since you have been writing about him I have been reading up on him, he is a multi talented young man and should be judged for what he has done in his art.


  2. I know! He's (Robert) just fabulous.

    I made the comment about T getting picked on as I've read on so many boards fans who obviously really think that. It's just his cross to bear.
    It's just got to suck having your every move, every statement over analyzed by strangers.

    That Stuart Heritage popped by my spinshack blog and left a comment. He's at least witty and really funny compared to some of the other entertainment writers. He has this wacky section of his web site titled, "Things that Kill You" featuring odd and strange animal attacks - not for the faint of heart. I enjoy the weirdest things sometimes.

  3. jerseyirish6:34 PM

    Sunny, I saw he left a comment, got a kick out of the bong comment, made me laugh. After my Dad passed away my brother got really brazen around the house, he would leave his bong on the kitchen table and my Mom would freak, she called it his "bingo bongo", but wouldn't touch it. She would go out in the garden and cut flowers and put them in the bong so it looked like a vase on the table, thinking no one would notice. It was pretty funny.


  4. At least your Mom kept a sense of humour about it. Hilarious she put flowers in it like a vase. hahaha