Monday, April 02, 2007

Celebrity Madness

In the latest strike, Rosie now fires back at O’Reilly, calling him an imbecile, referring to more or less accurate similarities between him and Rupert Murdoch and Big Brother from George Orwell’s book, 1984. The interesting thing about the difference between O’Donnell and O’Reilly is that they are more or less the same thing except at different ends of the political spectrum and with a slightly different fan base.

Rosie O’Donnell’s relentless campaign to prove herself ratings worthy enough to get her own show is starting to work against her. It is threatening the base from which she works. Drumming up publicity over the past few months with her sensational arguments that are always far more about the public conflicts with well-considered, high rating targets like Donald Trump and Kelly Ripa (who refused to play long terms ball and shot her down immediately over the phone live on The View) themselves than the actual point she makes, Rosie appears to be losing control of what makes a sustainable and profitable ratings boosting argument.

With the recent round of sensational, attention grabbing allegations that 9/11 was an inside job (because topic-wise, where else could she turn for a bigger response than the public open sore that is 9/11?), she seems to be over riding Barbara Walters with short term media blitzes and therefore de-railing the poignancy of The View. NBC’s Joe Scarborough suggests that because Barbara Walters does nothing to stop these ratings grabbing gestures, Walters herself is revealing a desperate need for relevance and is losing her grip.

After an unhindered O’Donnell hammers the Bush government on The View by saying she isn’t convinced 9/11 was entirely the work of terrorists (a generally discounted theory across the board), Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly predictably takes the bait and initiates his own ratings grab for all it is worth by playing the mis-directed rage and anger fueled rant of a man whose son in law had been killed in Iraq. There’s no connection between what Rosie said and what the man is complaining about. He’s just an archetypical angry Fox news viewer and O’Reilly uses it for his own ratings grab. Are there any records anywhere that show the caller was actually for real and not an actor anyway? O’Reilly falsely claims that O’Donnell is dragging ratings down at ABC and that she should be fired; again, a gesture used to placate the average, stupid, pro-war, non-thinking viewer of Fox News that is without factual basis. This is merely O’Reilly’s schtick.

ABC won’t fire Rosie until people stop liking her attention seeking rants and Walters won’t stop her from mouthing off because, unlike what the Fox news pundits predictably suggest, America isn’t insulted by her exploitation of 9/11, they just love the distraction. Maybe Walters needs to stand up and stop Rosie every now and then, firmly. It would really mobilize her gay fan base. They love a strong woman – especially an emotionally complex old one. [source]

When you’re a lawyer who is more than likely still grappling with the fact that you were unpopular at school, that your parents ignored you or that you felt pressured to be a lawyer rather than to follow your true dream of becoming a Hollywood celebrity, you cannot be seen anywhere even remotely passé and you must have extra-conspicuous wealth. It’s all part of the appeal. Especially when you’re representing one side in one of the most mindlessly focused on cases of the year. You’re a celebrity now. LOOK LIKE ONE or be doomed to less coverage. That’s probably at least part of the justification behind lawyer Debra Opri’s recent outrageously over the top bill for more than a half a million dollars to recent client, Larry Birkhead. Rest assured that if he wasn’t in the news all the time, all these thousand dollar dinners with clients Birkhead wasn’t even present for, 6 hour plan rides that apparently take 10 hours, and fees for her personal publicist wouldn’t have been necessary. It’s all about the visual and editorial appeal after all and we can’t have the press saying that the lawyer ordered pizza or Chinese when they could be reporting that she’s successful and celebrated enough to order lobster. [source]

Following the lead of Britney Spears and emerging from the woodwork, Avril Lavigne needed a way to set herself apart from Spears’ essentially unforgotten squeaky clean, repressed but present whore-ish angle so she kicks off the “I’m the edgy, punk version of Spears” campaign by saying she was forced by her mother to see Britney Spears perform as a child and that she considers it abuse. Oh wow, Lavigne really is edgy and cool. She considers Britney’s music abuse. Yeah, totally. Wow, that’s because she feels like the pain she goes through to get to the honest, real material in HER songs is insulted by Britney’s corporately constructed clean image. Life isn’t clean and simple, Britney. If only you knew what Avril Lavigne has BEEN through. GOD. Listen to her music, it’s, like, all there; the real, heartfelt pain… If we could guarantee that Lavigne wouldn’t sit in her trailer in a well orchestrated, PR suggested, teenage angst riddled sulking fit; publicists ringside and gagged, who would win in a boxing match: Pink or Lavigne? [source]

Jonathan Rhys Myers’ publicists insist that their bankable and up and coming client has massed appeal by relentlessly hammering it home that Rhys Myers is not gay by making sure items like this get into the Post.

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