Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lie Low, LiLo

It makes my daughter's skin crawl to hear me refer to Lindsay Lohan as "LiLo," but frankly, the former has too many syllables, causing me to waste even more time discussing her. What's the fascination? Schadenfreude? Oh, how the mighty have fallen kind of thing? Yes and no.

For those who don't know, Ms. Lohan's is a tragic tale of a yet another Disney star gone wobbly. Ejected from the same fame mill as Justin Timberlake, Christina Aquilera and Britney (do I have to say her last name?), she rocketed to fame as a co-star in Disney's Parent Trap with follow-ups Freaky Friday, across from mega-star, Jamie Lee Curtis, and in Mean Girls, all high-grossers. Maybe what cracked her pot was having a car as a co-star in Herbie Fully Loaded because after that, both publicly and in her filmography, she moved toward strictly grown-up stuff, like rampant, in-your-face sexuality, beaver-reveals and nip-slips a-plenty, the rumoured, but so-far-untrue, cell-phone sex videos, allegedly being beaten up and spat upon by her supposed ex-girlfriend, Samantha Ronson and, of course, not one, but two DUIs within a ridiculously short time span, both also involving the possession of coke, and I don't mean the fabulously sweet carbonated beverage that gives me agita, either.

Really, WTF? We are talking about a "successful" 24 year-old with two records under her belt and more than fifteen movies, a few of which have been huge hits, right? And the potential is there, not because she's a great actress or a fabulous singer, but because she is smack-dab in the middle of the Hollywood success machine, at just the right age, with loads of momentum. And she apparently doesn't give a f*ck. That's sad.

What's sadder still is that she hadn't taken a page from the Celebrity Manual of Contrition. Michael Vick took his lumps, served his time, apologised and ponied-up a barrel full of money to help counter the publicity surrounding his dog-fighting conviction. It didn't mean that he had to lay prone while animal rights activists took their best shots in a poorly-lit east Philly parking lot, but he instead negotiated the situation and whatever arc of a career as a star NFL player he has left can now be followed neatly to its inevitable conclusion to a network color commentary chair, surrounded with a smattering of dealership ribbon-cuttings and a side of strength-training supplement endorsements. All because he got caught, weighed the difference between being a feckless thug and the potential of true star status, and decided that it would be better to make people like him again so that they would show him the money. LiLo's attititude is exemplified by the creative mani she sported on sentencing day in July - "f*ck u."

Blah, blah, so it's a "shame." Unfortunately, it's a little more than that. Hollywood types have been self-destructing since the days of Fatty Arbuckle and we've been eating it up since then, gossip whores that we are. Thing is, it's not alright. It's about time that the divas and dudes that do this kind of thing understand that a nip-slip or drunken brawl might be momentarily entertaining, in the end, it's pretty nasty and does nothing for our country's image in the world. Further, as a celebrity, one has the obligation to be respectful to one's fans. Celebrities don't have a private life when they're in public and if they want to behave like drunken, drug-addled idiots, it's really an intentional insult to the lesser "great unwashed." Hey, listen, you're cute, hot, talented, whatever, but there are limits. So, behave badly all you want, just not in our collective livingroom. It's just plain rude. And sad. And it's about time that we collectively set a standard both for ourselves and for our kids that says to these lilotypes that we're not sinking any further - sorry. And for those celebrities - and sports stars and politicians - who can't respect themselves enough to show a little respect for the rest of us, well, we must commit to just turning away like we turn away when someone else's toddler explodes in frustration at the Pathmark because he just wants it wants it wants it. Well, you can't have it. Behave yourself.

1 comment:

Portamonkey said...

If you don't care, they why make a big deal of it? Celebrites entertain us, right? So, Lohan in the slammer is pretty entertaining to me. I'm pretty sure she's just "acting" out her life. Some people can't live with no drama.