STOP! Just say no.
The cults of celebrity and personality are powerful in America. In fact there's almost a cult of cultishness. We hunger for distinctive characters to provide archetypes and guidance for the herd. In the supposed Land of the Individual, one is permitted to be an "individual" so long as one stays within the specific set of limits prescribed by these characters. Venture outside those limits, and you're "crazy" or an "undesirable". As Internet-fed national hysteria casts its har... [Read more]
Google "Who is Red John" and click on a few links, and you'll find yourself embroiled in a storm of passionate fans with strong opinions and theories. There's even a Vegas betting line, and that Robert Kirkland is NOT in last place (which he should be, because he's been depicted talking on the phone with Red John). If I were betting, I wouldn't choose the odds-on favorite, Bret Stiles, but that's admittedly at least partially because I like the character. [Read more]
In a society where you can buy string bikinis for babies, where there are children wearing clothing that say “wink wink” or “juicy” across the butt and popular shows like the psychological train wreck Toddlers and Tiaras and the salacious teen series Gossip Girls, and when people like your mom are taking classes at pole dancing gyms, is it really that shocking for an almost 21-year-old Miley Cyrus to hit the stage at the VMA Awards half-dressed, saucily rubbing herself up against singer Robin Th... [Read more]
I hadn't thought much about the whole Dixie Chicks / Toby Keith controversy in a long time (if you need a refresher, check out http://www.btchflcks.com/2013/03/shut-up-and-sing-dixie-chicks.html). It made me think about whether or not I consider my personal principles in the context of entertainment. I mean, I like to think of myself as fairly principled. I've done a u-turn and made a passenger get out of my car and pick up some litter they tossed out the window. I've abruptly left a party because the host used the n-word. Heck, I even had a "Free Mr. Bates" bumper sticker on my car.
But when it comes to entertainers, I seem to give everyone a pass. [Read more]
He's still rocking Broadway
There is quite the Shakespeare surge this season on the Great White Way. After last season's acclaimed nearly-one-man Macbeth starring Alan Cumming (Cabaret), a more traditional production starring Ethan Hawke (Gattaca) and directed by Jack O'Brien (Hamlet, Hairspray) is slated to begin performances in October. And one of this season's big celebrity vehicles is a new revival of Romeo and Juliet starring Orlando Bloom (not exactly a teenager anymore, but Legolas can pr... [Read more]
There have been many rumors about the master magician and illusionist David Copperfield in recent years. He’s been sued for breach of contract for cancelling shows in Jakarta while his Indonesian promoter held onto hundreds of thousands of dollars of his equipment in return. He sued an insurance company for reimbursement of a ransom paid to Russian mafia who had taken his equipment. He fought rumors that he was gay despite his six-year engagement to supermodel Claudia Schiffer. He later was acc... [Read more]
I have my doubts about both Celtic Woman and Celtic Thunder. I was excited enough by the build-up to watch specials featuring each of these groups, and got comfy with my popcorn (or, possibly, a martini), ready to be blown away.
Not that the productions weren't slick and the performers incredibly talented. I just kept waiting for them to cut loose a bit. It was all too neat and tidy. The vocals were flawless—too flawless. In both cases, I wanted to toss some gravel into all that honey. I wanted someone to sweat. [Read more]
Video Still from "Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film", Jay Z and Mark Romanek, 2013
For many of us who have not yet been adopted by the New York City art world we wondered who was the intense-looking lady in black pressed up against Jay Z’s forehead in the performance art film for "Picasso Baby"? She showed up again in Lady Gaga’s NSFW alternative medicine/rehab video promo for Gaga’s new album sitting opposite the Fame Monster herself. To say Abramović is having a moment is redundant. Abr... [Read more]
It would stink if it wasn't for charity.
When I dragged myself from my pit this morning, the only thing on my mind was a Spaniard who has been teasing me for weeks. His name is Cesc Fabregas, and he plays football - sorry, soccer - for FC Barcelona. Over the past month there have been rumors flying around, to the effect that Fabregas is going to sign for Manchester United, the team I love. Unfortunately, any substance that might propel these rumors into the land of the possible are unforthcomi... [Read more]