I know there are thousands of blogsites out there obsessed with today’s so-called celebrities and they all seem to focus on what Katie/Dannii/Cheryl/Simon et al did today. But I have a strange fascination with the faded celebrity, the ones who are no longer papped falling out of Chinawhite’s at 3am or seen gracing the diary pages of Hello, OK!, Now and the red top papers. Once they were titans but now they simply don’t even register a blip on the tabloids’ radar. How do they feel about that; are they relieved or heart-broken to be out of the public’s attention? Don’t you really want to know how their psyche’s been affected? No? Well I’d love to meet them now just to find out how a return to the quiet life is affecting them. You just know that some of them will be happy to potter about in the garden whilst others will try to hold on to faded glories and continue to act all luvvie/rock star and be the pathetic centre of attention on Saturday nights at the local Dog and Duck.
I was just thinking the other day about a number of people who have simply disappeared from our media view when once they dominated it. Take the broadcaster David Coleman. This is a guy who dominated sports reporting for years with anchor roles on BBC’s Grandstand, Sportsnight, Sports Personality OTY, Question of Sport and the Beeb’s coverage of the Grand National, FA Cup Final and all UK athletics meetings, and who just happened to cover a mere 11 Olympic Games. But can you remember the last time he was seen on TV? I know he’s getting on and all that but so is David Attenborough and he’s never off our screens. Just what did the guy, for whom Private Eye dedicated a whole section of its magazine content to his ‘Colemanballs’ unintentionally amusing expressions, do to justify this fall from grace? It’s hard to imagine that someone who so monopolised the screen and airwaves is simply retired and happy to be away from the public eye, but I could be wrong of course.
Some other names? What about Val Doonican who once was the God of Saturday night tv at the BBC. He’s still performing I read but when did he last appear on your radar? About the same time as woolly jumpers went out of fashion. Speaking of which whatever happened to Frank Bough – the sports broadcasting heir to Coleman who migrated to the early morning couch when 24 hour tv came in? He even managed to attract the most lurid headlines when he became the Max Moseley of his day when he became embroiled in a sex and cocaine scandal. What nice old uncle Frank? Oh yes. These days that would guarantee him a place in Celebrity Big Brother or I’m a Celebrity GMOOH but baldie Bough went down like a broken bough and has never been seen since, not even in panto – the last refuge for the faded star. For the geeks, whatever became of Prof Heinz Wolff or even James Burke who progressed from Tomorrow’s World to front a whole series of science-related programmes in the 80’s and 90’s?
Women don’t seem to fare much better. Name anything that any of the girls from Charlie’s Angels did after the original show (other than Farrah FM) or the woman who was Wonder Woman? When was the last time you saw Valerie Singleton featuring in the current media news or Calista Flockhart, Linda Kozlowski, Molly Ringwald, Tracey Ullman, Alisha’s Attic, Cindi Lauper or Yazz? It wasn’t today. And I could quote dozens more.
I even smiled yesterday when I read that the Leeds United-supporting guys from the Kaiser Chiefs were at the FA Cup match against Man Utd. Do you remember a year or so ago when they were on everything and everyone was humming Ruby, Ruby, Ruby? Since then….they could have been hermits for all the notice they’ve attracted in my media choices. I wouldn’t have reckoned on these guys being the likely lads for wondering whatever happened to….?
Any big name celebrity green bottles fallen from your wall in recent times?