Tag Archives: Woody Allen

K-Stew Cheated on R-Pats: Who Cares? An Analysis of Celebrity

27 Jul

In Woody Allen’s new-ish film, To Rome With Love, he has a thread concerning an ordinary man, Leopoldo, played by Roberto Benigni. Leopoldo finds himself captured by fame, quite literally. He leaves his humdrum, nothing special life in the morning, says goodbye to his wife, only to find himself suddenly accosted by reporters and photographers. Paparazzi surrounds him; flashbulbs blind him; microphones capture his sound bites, recording what he ate for breakfast and whether he wears boxers or briefs. No doubt this is Woody Allen’s clever commentary on the notion of celebrity, investigating how truly odd it is that we care about these inane details of strangers lives.

When one strips away the created aura that is celebrity or fame, how different is Leopoldo, from R-Pats, from you or me? If you are too cultured to know, R-Pats and K-Stew are the names bestowed upon Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, the stars who were catapulted into the limelight with the debut of the succession of the ultra-popular Twilight films. What causes this obsession with a person, who when it comes down to it, is really just a person who happens to have a cool job? This fascination with an ordinary person elevates them over and above who they are in reality, creates something like a simulacra, a false reality that doesn’t exist. Is Angelina Jolie still Angelina Jolie when she visits countries where no one knows her? Or is she just a really pretty woman named Angelina?

The same is true for the attention given to royalty or athletes and it can be traced virtually throughout time. It seems we find someone we perceive as better than ourselves, more glamorous, or rich, or has something we want and fixate on them. They become an ideal as opposed to a person. But are they ideal or better? Probably not. Inevitably they will disappoint us. They will come out with a sex video, or leave the house without makeup, or say something stupid and give themselves away only to fall out of favor with the masses.

This is a very common cycle. We lift them up and tear them down. Media loves to sell it and we love to buy it. We love to create this unreal persona and then “figure out” that they are just like you and I.

There are even magazine articles about it. They feed the parking meters. They hit magazine stands. They fly with pillows. They use airport luggage carts. We are astounded by this. How could Eva Longoria fly with a pillow?! There are millions of people who feed parking meters every day. Why do we care when Wilmer Valderrama does it?

Perhaps, when one can identify with, or find flaws in a person perceived as perfect somehow it justifies our own flaws, lifts us up because they are less ideal. Consider the current Reality Television epidemic. Why do we love celebrity train wrecks so much?


Is it that the cast of MTV’s the Jersey Shore lives so differently than most of us that causes us to watch, eyes wide with horror? Or, do we enjoy seeing pseudo-celebrities make fools of themselves? Does it make us feel better to watch the cast of six, knowing that at the very least, no matter who you are, there are six people less intelligent and more crazy than you are?

I am just as guilty as the next person. I watch The Real Housewives more than I care to admit. But what if we didn’t? What if we all woke up and saw it for what it is: a bunch of twenty-somethings drinking too much, just like at every bar across America, people buying a magazine, people putting money in a parking meter, people just like you and I, except with cameras following them?

What if we all said, who cares?

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