The Decline Of Celebrity

The Golden Globes were last night. Lots of people are talking about them. Apparently the big news is that actress Scarlett Johansson got her ta-ta’s squeezed on the red carpet by some enterprising E! Network correspondent.

This reminds me of the reasons why I don’t have cable. Not that I have anything against Johnansson’s breasts; it’s just that it all seems so vapid and meaningless.

What’s with all these awards shows anyway? It seems like there is no end to them. The Globes, Oscars, Emmy’s, MTV Awards, Teen Choice Awards…and on and on. Are they now having awards shows just for the sake of having awards shows? Just how prestigious is it to have won “Best Male Supporting Role” in one of the literally dozens of awards shows that are put on by the entertainment industry every year? The other day, while home sick from work, I caught Goldie Hawn getting a “lifetime achievement” award from Glamour magazine. It was awarded by Martin Short, and to see everyone carrying on you’d think she’d just won the Nobel Peace Prize.

All due respect to Goldie, but who really cares?

This growth in the number of award shows seem, to me, to be an extension of a trend that has been going on here in America for a few years now. Namely, the decline of celebrity. America has always loved celebrities. We have put them up on pedestals, deemed them better than than the rest of us and concerned ourselves with each and every minute detail of their lives. This worship has given birth to an entire industry of tabloids, paparrazi and “entertainment news” that often seems to have the attention of more Americans than even the traditional political/current event media.

Did you know that there are entire websites (and apparently full-time photographers) dedicated to getting pictures up the dresses of celebrities as they get out of cars or down their shirts if they lean over to far? I’m not kidding.

Things are changing. Celebrity doesn’t mean what it used to mean. People are “famous” these days for not really doing anything it all. There was a time when fame meant something, when it took years of hard work and accomplishment to carve for yourself a niche in the public eye, but now all one has to do is appear on a reality show and suddenly you’re “Bill from Big Brother 4” or “Jenna from Survivor: Siberia.” You go to award shows and have your photo taken by the appropriate tabloids. If your star starts to fade and you get desperate enough you may even release some video of yourself having intimate relations with some other pseudo-celebrity, something that will undoubtedly spark at least another fifteen minutes of fame in the entertainment news and on the internet.

The whole thing sickens me. Not because I’m any sort of prude, mind you, but because it all seems so totally worthless. I enjoy going to movies, and there are even certain television shows I enjoy watching with regularity, but more and more I find myself disillusioned by the whole thing.

You can read more from Rob Port at SayAnythingBlog.com

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