Thursday, July 13, 2006

The Natives are Talking Back

Pat Kingsley (former publicist to Tom Cruise) is credited with pioneering modern image control in Hollywood. Listen to the NPR story on her. She was the first to demand that her client appear on a magazine cover in exchange for a interview. She was also first to set the terms for who would do the interview, who the photographer would be, and demand approval of topics and interview questions. These have become the standard practices in Hollywood and you can see it in the overly staged and scripted presentation of celebrities. Over the last 15 years we have been force fed celebrity science fiction.

Blogging has changed all that and in the age of participatory media lots of things get said that are beyond the control of publicists and agents. There has been a huge backlash against celebrity culture. The natives are talking back.

"F*** page 6! We've got our own captions for those pictures!"
one of the funniest and most irreverent voices commenting on celebrity culture is Go Fug Yourself. Here are two of my favorite pieces from them.

They described Jude Law as dressing like a 'shipwrecked maitre d''.

They described this woman as a "trend casserole".

The visual equivalent of Go Fug Yourself is Gallery of the Absurd. The illustrations by 14 are viscous and brilliant.

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