Imagine This

When did we get so obsessed with celebrity that we started reading and accepting things that simply are not true?

I’m not talking about annoying publicity stunts or some made up crap on twitter, but articles published by reputable magazines which are self-confessed fabrications. I’d hesitate to say I like celebrity gossip as much as the next guy, but I don’t have any real aversion to it – I have very little interest in or opinion on celebrity culture at all.

BUT – this one stood out somewhat. You may know it. Vanity Fair writer, Josh Duboff, writes a column every Friday entitled “Imagined Celebrity Connections” and as far as I can tell people read it. Real people, not imagined. Now I’m not really one to call people out or come for anyone, but this particular article about a real meeting between Adele, Jennifer Lawrence and Emma Stone had me riled up in ways and for reasons I don’t quite understand.

The article runs under a number of sub-headings, which I will helpfully summarise here in case you tear your eyes out at the state of journalism as exhibited by Mr Duboff. I should point out here that I am not a journalist, nor do I claim to really know anything about journalism whatsoever. It just made me sad.

Wait these three know each other?!

A healthy portion of gossip about how this monumental meeting of superstars came about. Plus links in pretty colours to other VF articles. Handy.

Where did they eat?

Pretty simple one here – a posh Mexican in New York, Cosme. Plus a made up J-Law quip. Give her some credit Mr Duboff, she is actually funny.

Now here’s the big one:

What did they talk about?

Seriously.

There is no way for us to know for sure (believe us, we have spent the past three hours questioning hundreds of random passers-by outside Cosme for any possible leads, to no avail), but we imagine it went something like this:

I really struggled to believe what I was reading here. Granted I had never come across this “Imagined Celebrity Connections” series before, but you see this particular article is not in that series. The colon is followed by a full script (including stage directions) of their wacky conversation, as imagined by Mr Duboff. My problem with this section (one of my problems with this section) is how self-congratulatory it is. Every joke is followed by “prolonged laughter” – or “cackling” in Adele’s case. I’ll give you an example:

Adele [cackling]: “I feel like . . . oh, you know, you two are these glamorous Hollywood movie stars, and I’m just like a mom from the middle of nowhere in England.”

Firstly, what, and secondly, this is followed by such fatuous rubbish as Jennifer Lawrence saying her mum sent her a “running text thread” the first time she heard “Hello”. Nobody calls it a running text thread. I’m fairly certain of that. Thirdly, Adele’s response:

Adele: “Stop, stop, this is too much!”

You’re right, Fake Adele, my sides are splitting.

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Then we get more weird nonsense about Adele wishing for Lawrence and Stone to co-star in a movie with songs written by Adele. That, I’m sure, would actually be great, but it’s ruined by some repeated pun from earlier which I skipped over because it was too cringeworthy. And I love bad puns.

Who covered the bill here?

I’ve lost the will to care now. Duboff hopes the restaurant covered it.

Where did they head after?

A slurry of wishful celebrity japes – leftover pie at Emma Stone’s place, Amy Schumer on the Lower East Side, quirky photos with a giant bagel. Fabrications all. They were snapped getting into an S.U.V. in a shot which Duboff claims is “amusingly similar” to Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears, and Paris Hilton eight years ago. It’s three white women in a car. They’re famous. So similar.

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And yet, despite this rant which I’m aware has slowly but surely become more vicious as I get more pissed off, my next post could well be an imagined celebrity encounter. It does seem quite fun.

Advice: Don’t hurt cats. They’re ugly and dogs are so much better for so many reasons, but nothing deserves to be drop kicked. Donald Trump, maybe.

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