I am fascinated by celebrity culture.
Now, don’t take that the wrong way. I’m don’t care so much about which celebs are getting married, or who’s having a baby, or who recently had hair plugs installed. Some of that stuff tends to filter through just because it passes for “news” these days, but I’m not scouring the tabloids and soaking it all in.
I’m more interested in the whole concept of celebrity: how it happens, why it happens, who it happens to, what causes it to fade. There’s good celebrity and bad celebrity. Some people have it for a long time, some barely have it for a Warholian fifteen minutes. Some people work their whole lives to get it, some people don’t want it but get it anyway. Some people work hard to get it and then realize they hate having it when they finally get it. There’s different circles of celebrity, and a someone everyone knows in a particular circle might be completely unheard of outside it.
I also find it fascinating how non-famous people react to celebrities. There are the fans who cling to every last thing their particular celebrity does or says. Any clothes, perfumes, or product the celebrity puts their name on gets automatically desired. Any thing the celebrity does that is questionable, even to a high degree, is explained away and accepted, even if it’s behavior that you wouldn’t put up with from your best friend. On the other hand, you’ve got people who hate and resent celebrity in most forms. In their eyes, the celeb doesn’t deserve any of the fame because they’re a no-talent, vacuous, not-as-attractive-as-people-think jerk who wouldn’t give you the time of day if you saw them.
I don’t generally begrudge anyone’s celebrity. Sure, there are plenty of people who got famous for terrible, terrible reasons, but the way I figure it, they always have a chance to redeem themselves. I guess it’s because I’ve been forgiven over and over again that I feel most people should also be given that chance. So while I might enjoy it that a movie might tank if it has an actor in it that I don’t particularly enjoy, that’s different from wishing they were cast into the sun. I also tend to feel sadness for actors “in trouble.” I sense a sort of glee in people when celebrities fail, even if they fail over and over again. And, sure, some of them may be awful people, but even if most of them were, I think they still deserve pity.
I don’t have any great finishing thoughts here, I just find the whole celebrity thing very interesting.