Stop The Presses!

January 12-19: You Want Fame?

Lyndsey Parker
Stop The Presses!

Well, chances are if you have working electricity (which is likely, given that you're on the Internet reading this blog right now), then you are aware that a little show called American Idol kicked off its eighth season this week. Despite a lot of gum-flapping about the show's supposed ratings decline, the public's supposed growing disinterest in the contestants' recorded output, and the supposedly dubious decision to cast fourth judge Kara DioGuardi, Idol still managed to draw roughly 30.1 million viewers for its premiere Tuesday night, making it the most-watched prime-time show of the television season thus far. So apparently Seacrest is not out, just yet. Then again, maybe Bikini Girl had something to do with it...

A past American Idol success story also made news this week, when it was announced that season 3 finalist-turned-Oscar-winning-superstar Jennifer Hudson will sing the National Anthem at next month's Super Bowl

(a broadcast with such gibungous ratings, it makes Idol's 30.1 look like nuthin'). J.Hud hasn't made a public appearance since her mother, brother, and nephew were tragically murdered last October, so this will be a big return to the spotlight for the troubled Idol. We here at That's Really Week congratulate her on this comeback, and welcome her return to the spotlight.

A couple other troubled women--albeit more notorious ones, pun intended--were also in the spotlight this week. First, hip-hop diva Lil' Kim angrily addressed the press about her depiction in Notorious, the new Notorious B.I.G. biopic. Kim, who was romantically linked to Biggie (real name: Christopher Wallace) early in her career and was famously mentored by the slain rapper, issued a statement that read: "The film studio and producers involved were more concerned about painting me as a 'character' to create a more interesting storyline instead of a person with talent, self-respect and who was able to achieve her own career success through hard work. Even though my relationship with Big was at times very difficult and complicated (as with most relationships we have all experienced at one time or another), it was also genuine and built on great admiration and love for each other.

Regardless of the many lies in the movie and false portrayal of me to help carry a storyline through, I will still continue to carry his legacy through my hard work and music."

But Biggie's mother, Voletta Wallace, dismissed Kim's complaints, saying: "This is not a Lil' Kim movie. This is a Christopher Wallace movie. It has nothing to do with Lil' Kim. If she's disappointed and upset, that is her problem." And screenwriter Cheo Hodari Coker further added: "I think that [actress] Naturi [Naughton] did a great job playing Kim. I think people are going to be a lot more sympathetic towards [Lil' Kim] after seeing the movie." But will they be more sympathetic towards Kim after reading her whiny statement? We shall see...

The other tortured female making the headlines this week was Amy Winehouse, whose jailbird husband Blake "Incarcerated" Fielder-Civil officially filed for divorce from behind bars. Yes, that's right: Blake left her. Ouch. Mr. Incarcerated cited alleged infidelity as the reason for the long-rumored (and probably long-needed) split, although it would seem that until recently Amy was pretty loyal, since she never missed an opportunity to give her lesser half a shoutout from the stage or wear a Blake-themed hair accessory in her ever-expanding bouffant.

However, in an interview last weekend with tabloid News Of The World from her current vacation spot in St. Lucia, Amyactually raved that she'd "finally escaped from hell" and was "in love again." With someone other than Blake Incarcerated. Yes, Amy has been spotted all over St. Lucia as of late with 21-year-old tourist Josh Bowman--who, Amy told the tabloid, "couldn't be more different from my husband, which is not a bad thing." (Well, we can't argue with that logic.) "I don't know what's going on with us now and for the time being I've just forgotten I'm even married...But our whole marriage was based on doing drugs. So being with someone like Josh is much better for me." She also said she would "deal with Blake when I get back"--which, we assume, will mean dealing with a divorce attorney. We suggest she hire Fiona Shackleton, the British super-lawyer who handled the multimillion-dollar divorces of Paul McCartney and Madonna.

Amy, whose rise to great fame and fortune coincided with her May 2007 marriage to Blake, is going to need a seasoned legal pro here.

And on the subject of legal pros, it's too bad Boy George didn't have a more effective lawyer on his side this week. The flamboyant Culture Club frontman was sentenced to 15 months in jail after being convicted of falsely imprisoning a male escort (he was accused of handcuffing the escort to a wall in a London apartment). Judge David Radford apparently believed that Boy really did want to hurt his victim, saying that George was guilty of "gratuitous violence." Oh well, maybe Boy George can hang out with Blake Incarcerated behind bars.

And speaking of fame, fortune, and pros, the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame 2009 inductees were announced this week, and shockingly, the Stooges were once again passed over. We say "shockingly" because the Stooges' legendary guitarist, Ron Asheton, died from a heart attack last week, and we figured this would at least earn the band some sympathy votes. (Not that the Stooges NEEDED any sympathy votes, mind you--they're awesome and much deserving of the accolade.) This year's nine possible Rock Hall nominees were Jeff Beck, Chic, Wanda Jackson, Little Anthony & the Imperials, Metallica, Run-DMC, the aforementioned Stooges, War, and Bobby Womack, and along with the Stooges, Chic didn't make the cut either--despite their own vast influence on dance and soul music. Of course, Metallica and Run-DMC are great additions to the Hall, and we're thrilled that fierce female rockabilly pioneer Wanda Jackson made it (in the "Early Influence" category). But the omission of recently reunited punk godfathers the Stooges, especially in light of recent tragic events, is no fun indeed.

The Stooges first got back together for California's Coachella festival in 2003, and since then the fest has been a destination for all sorts of comeback bands, from the Pixies to Crowded House to the Verve to Rage Against The Machine. And this week it was announced that one of Coachella's 2009 reunion bands will likely be '90s slacker-rock icons Pavement, who (get ready to feel really old now) are celebrating their 20th anniversary this year. Other rumored reunion acts on this year's Coachella bill include Britpoppers Blur and '80s ska legends the Specials, although it seems extremely unlikely that a long-hoped-for Smiths reunion will take place at Coachella 2009. Or at Coachella 2029, for that matter. And we;ve got a feeling there won't be any Culture Club reunion, either...

And thus concludes another week in headspinning headlines. Come back next week for more, and until then, goodnight and good music.



1) Idol Worship - American Idol returns for an eighth season with a fourth judge.

2) You Know Their Marriage Is No Good - Amy Winehouse's husband officially files for divorce.

3) Boy George's Karma Catches Up With Him - The Culture Club frontman is sentenced to 15 months in jail on false imprisonment charges.

4) Hall Or Nothing - 2009's Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame inductees are announced, along with some surprising snubs.

5) Jennifer Hudson Back In The Spotlight - She will make her first post-tragedy public appearance at the Super Bowl.

6) Lil' Kim Throws B.I.G. Tantrum - She's not thrilled with how she's portrayed in the new Notorious B.I.G. biopic.

7) Kanye West's Bad Vibe - He's angry about how he looks on the latest Vibe magazine cover.

8) Bone Thugs-N-Robbery - Rap act Bone Thugs are also robbed.

9) Variety Is The Spice Of Mayer - John Mayer is set to star in his own TV variety show.

10) Chasing Pavement - The 1990s alt-rock band is set to reunite.


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