Friday, 28 August 2009

Ryan Alexander Jenkins and the Culture of Celebrity

A constant state of celebrity exists within human society. We exalt those amongst us into kings, god-kings, 'God's representative'. This is the nature of hierarchical beings.

This 21st century version was born through a TV camera lens on the Real World in America and Big Brother in Britain. It is celebrity of the gormless, the witless, the talentless: Paris Hilton1, Jade Goody2, Jordan3, Octopussy4, Jodie Marsh5, Jon & Kate6 et cetera. This is the celebrity Ryan Jenkins desperately wanted to be a part of.

Television conceived it. The internet nursed it. The press validated it. Vh1 christened it.

In the UK we have Celebrity Big Brother. Alumni include Jermaine Jackson, La Toya Jackson, Verne Troyer. Vh1 had The Surreal Life (alumni include Verne Troyer) – which morphed into Strange Love which begat Flavor of Love (FoL). 3 years later the 15th show down the FoL line was Megan Wants a Millionaire. Finally Ryan Jenkins was on TV. He was on guaranteed hit TV.

Celebreality is inclusive in its avarice. Vh1’s franchise brand name – Flavor Flav – was convicted of illegal weapon charges in 19957. Brittanya O’Campo was awaiting trial whilst filming Rock of Love Bus and Charm School 38. If known criminals can be accepted then unknown criminality can infiltrate: Saaphyri Windsor was a fugitive while on Flavor of Love 2, Charm School and I Love Money 29.

Ryan Jenkins was a convicted wife-beater.10

A lot of people want to be rich. A lot of people want to be famous. It’s all about status. Who would you rather attend your birthday party - Brad Pitt or Bill Gates?

Sports, arts and entertainment will always be the default. However society has elevated celebrity above and beyond politics, diplomacy, military, industry, royalty, religion and science. Donald Trump did not need to go on television to hire an apprentice. Neither did Sir Alan Sugar11 nor the dragons in their den12. General Sir Mike Jackson13 is constantly popping up on television. The worthy want what the unworthy – Jade Goody, Jordan, Jodie Marsh – have.

It’s a valid occupation. It got Kate Gosselin14 a spot on The View. It got Katie Price national respectability. It got Octopussymum a free ride. There is no admission charge. It is a carousal of ego where have-nots pursue the wealth and respectability of the successful and where the haves covet the status and exposure of TV reality. It is fertile ground for the uninhibited.

The skin chicks. Strippers, porno starlets, Page 3 girls/topless/nude/glamour models. Frenchie, Raven, Brandy C, Brandi M, Brittany Star, Daisy de la Hoya, Anna Nicole Smith, Jodie Marsh, Jasmine Fiore.

These are murky waters. When the body is infected with trash – Kato Kaelin15 – it becomes a beacon for more – Ryan Jenkins. Celebrity used to be self-governing; you had to bring something to the club – Elvis, Michael Jordan, Tom Cruise. The absence of which now celebrates Dog the Bounty Hunter16.

Pop Will Eat Itself17 was a UK band formed in the 80s. Thanks to celebreality (American Idol, X-Factor) their prophecy has come true. Capitalism will eat itself. It did so last year but it’s not done yet. Celebrity will eat itself but before that it will devour the young18.

Celebrity as entertainment cannot be quantified. It is pastime for the masses. Celebrity as occupation is a cesspit of iniquity. Michael Jackson’s fate is yet to be legally determined19. Jasmine Fiore’s fate will remain conjecture.

Ryan Alexander Jenkins wasn’t a victim. He was a participant. Celebrity didn’t kill him. His lust for it did.

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Monday, 24 August 2009

Ryan Alexander Jenkins Found Dead

This news just in from the Associated Press.

And so it ends. With no closure.

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Sunday, 23 August 2009

Jasmine Fiore and the Culture of Celebrity

The delightful Lex over at sooperserial1 blew smoke signals to me about this. I clicked on the link and stared back at Ryan Alexander Jenkins. After reading the piece I was mildly surprised but not shocked. Murder occurs everyday. The surprise was that it was TMZ breaking news.

TMZ is the site that broke Michael Jackson’s passing2. I am a (5th estate) blogger in contrast and competition with the 4th estate mainstream (corporate) media. The worldwide web is the people’s newscast.

TMZ is owned by Warner Bros.

So how successful do you become before you sell out to The Man who welcomes you into the corridors of power? Son.

After reading the Ryan Jenkins piece I clicked over to Ricky Robot3 as is my wont. I trust his judgement and wordings. His posted opinion generated a response of consensus: pity for the victim, a rush to judgement and condemnation of Ryan’s flight. Ricky also pointed out some reactions from TMZ readers - they were sneering, insulting and heartless.

These reactions couldn’t be more typical. The internet serves as a gossip hole for those who choose. Gossips – idle talkers, tattlers4 – tend to spread their bile with the proviso “don’t tell anyone”. If you do they’ll deny you. Online they operate with complete anonymity. Online they monger with complete immunity from responsibility. These are the people who will not say such things in public. By definition these people are cowards. Their words are to be treated like bile – a putrid waste.

Who was Jasmine Fiore and why did someone kill her?

Jasmine’s death did not shock me. Murders occur everyday. 69 British Armed Forces personnel have died5 in Afghanistan this year alone – the last two on 20th August since Jasmine’s body was discovered. On 26th July Nigerian police began a two-day battle against anarchists/terrorists resulting in 150 deaths6. This United Kingdom is still shocked over the infanticide of Baby Peter Connelly[7][8].

80% of murdered women are killed by men. Between a third and half are married to their spouses9. These fractions do not include boyfriends, fiancés, common-law husbands and exes of all variations. Simply put if a woman is murdered odds are it’s by a current or former lover.

Scott Peterson10

Round up the usual suspects.

I believe in democracy and in freedom for all men (not just white men). I’m willing to fight for it (though I’d rather die for Christ). A fundamental right in a democracy is the presumption of innocence11. Corporate media do their best to usurp this right by cheerleading the public opinion lynch mob. This salaciousness sells copy. Yet every compos mentis citizen has the choice to defer to due process and allow the legal system to run its course on the matter in hand. So it is with dismay that I read coherent responses12 that rush to judgement. How can an opinion be valid when it is based on prejudice? How can a man be judged by such peers? How can he expect a fair trial?

Ryan Alexander Jenkins has not been seen or heard of since he reported his wife missing on 15th August hours after her remains were discovered. 18th August police named him as ‘a person of interest’. 20th August Orange County DA charged him with Jasmine’s murder.

Ryan Alexander Jenkins is a fugitive. His ongoing attempt to evade law enforcement is not an admission of guilt. Neither is it a proclamation of innocence. The flight issue should not be read either way. To those who condemn him for it I beg the question – would an innocent man flee from a lynch mob?

There are those who do not trust the law13. There are those who believe the judicial system is prejudicial, biased and/or panders to the gallery of public opinion[14][15]. With every trial the judiciary has the opportunity to validate justice. Have law enforcement apprehend the suspect and let the courts take their course. Opinions can be rendered post verdict; when they can do no harm.

I raised the question of a fair trial over at Ricky Robot’s site16. Ryan is Canadian. I have no knowledge of the Canadian media but here in Britain the guidelines curtail squealer-like mass coverage on the facts (and implied guilt or innocence) pre verdict. If Ryan has fled to Canada he and his lawyers will have motive for fighting extradition – the media coverage has prejudiced the possibility of a fair trial.

The corporate media are in the business of selling news not information dissemination. They’re not here to help Jasmine - they’re here to sell copy. If by doing so they inadvertently help Ryan Jenkins then call it collateral editorial damage.

Ryan was a contestant on Megan Wants a Millionaire. The show was airing before and after the murder and has been cancelled since the news broke. Hence the media coverage is understandable – but the tone isn't.

Here in the UK MTV is airing New York Goes to Hollywood (Vh1 UK airs music). The network hasn’t aired Charm School 3 or I Love Money 1 let alone Megan… yet the UK media are covering this story.

The keyword is ‘Playboy’.

Jasmine was a ‘Playboy™ model’. Ryan was a reality TV contestant. This is Z-List celebrity at its murkiest. Vh1 will not broadcast Megan… in the US. Perhaps elsewhere perhaps not but the show will go on. If celebrity sex tapes can be stolen and sold then so can Megan… There’s a mainstream market for it now. However that is only a somewhat possibility. The main show is the manhunt of Ryan. Then the extradition. Then the trial. Then the book. Then the movie-of-the-week.

Hollywood released a major movie out of the Black Dahlia.

They couldn’t have done it without we the people.

Megan Wants a Millionaire had a working title of Trophy Wife. In every community in every society the rich man gets the girl. Be he village doctor, council estate drug dealer or trust fund buffoon. Money attracts a certain type ie the majority. Women should be aware (though they ignore) the way a man treats his property. Ryan Alexander Jenkins is a woman beater17.

So was Frank Sinatra18.

How did Ryan pass the (presumably) criminal and psychological background checks to appear on a nationally broadcast TV show owned by a multi-national conglomerate? We may never know. Vh119 passed the buck to 51 Minds20 who have passed it to their casting company. Somebody’s got to take the bullet. Somebody insignificant. Perhaps an intern.

If money is the only language the conglomerates understand then is there a local, state or federal body that can slap Viacom and Endemol - 51 Minds parent company - with a fine? Or strong arm them into making a donation to a woman’s refuge? $1million isn’t what it used to be but it’s a gesture.

I’m a fan of celebreality; it’s entertainment. However Celebrity culture is undermining society and democracy. It is a culture where celebrities make a mockery of the law – Amy Winehouse, Pete Docherty, Kate Moss. It is a culture that is aided by the media and abetted by the public. What should be a circus is now a legitimate sport. It is avarice disguised as art. It attracts the young, the beautiful, the vulnerable, the pitiful and their neglectful parents. It attracts the corporations, the capitalists, the carpet baggers, the corrupters and the cowards.

Jasmine Fiore’s death did not shock me. It has saddened me.

She’s a celebrity now.

The death of one man is a tragedy; the death of a million is a statistic

Stalin was wrong about the last part.

Jasmine Fiore

February 18th 1981 – August 15th 2009

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Friday, 21 August 2009

Cashmere Talks

The delectable Cashmere from For the Love of A.Jaye - Ray J - is streaming online now.

She didn't say much with her potty mouth- she cannot talk about I Love Money 3 - but she's great to look at.

Read More Thrill Fiction: Trophy Wife

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Thursday, 20 August 2009

Megan wants a Millionaire 102

Everyone knows about Ryan but this is Thrill Fiction and I've got two more episodes to post.

Post haste.

Millionaire Sex Mode

This weeks MVP

because not every plumber/blue collar/skilled labourer has gay disco within them.

The season’s first challenge is gift giving as Megan’s “favourite holiday is Valentine’s day.” I didn’t know it was a ‘holiday’ in America. Over here it’s a night out – with your mates.

The challenge is like in 101 - but in reverse. This week the men have to gift Megan. Give give give.

What a gig.

Cisco cooks Megan something presumably edible. Since he’s half naked I guess they don’t have Health & Safety in America.

Megan: “Perfect size for my mouth.”

Don’t try that at home boys. The idea is to starve women so they look like this

and not this

Nervous Al remembers when he made like poodle bitch and caused Megan to assault herself. He’s gotta throw down on this one.

It’s a voucher - $8 grand worth of voucher - for cosmetic surgery.

Plastic surgery? I don’t think that’s

gonna work with Megan.”

Some women may be offended by a cheque

for plastic surgery. But not me.”

You what?

Shaun’s done his research; Megan likes sushi. Why not perverted nyotaimori ?

Niles: “Mr Shaun felt doomed. But Megan appreciated

his willingness to embarrass himself

for her enjoyment.”

Big Mike dazzles with a designer dress.

“I wrote Megan a song that’s going to

immortalise her for life [sic].”

SEX MODE lyrics by Garth the Plumber

Yo! G-Money!

G-Money? Garth the plumber millionaire?

Grab your hips and lick your lips…”

Not only is Garth a plumber. He’s a singing

plumber. And I don’t enjoy the fact

that he’s touching himself.”

I thought it was TV gold.

Sex mode? It has kinds of a good beat and

if you had a bunch of people on drugs

in a club maybe they would like it.”

The top three gift givers going on a date with Megan are Shaun

You what? The nekkid sushi guy?

Megan: “Thoughtful gifts are good.”

Big Mike

Megan: “Expensive gifts are great.”

and Nervous Al.

Megan: “Thoughtful and expensive? Now that’s a winner in my book.”

This show has a millionaire caveat syndrome: the winners are permitted to sex up their dates with Megan by purchasing gifts allotted for her.

Garth the plumber is miffed she didn’t choose him and his shitetunes. Where’s the best place to sulk?

Megan never said she hated his ‘song’ (she didn’t have to), she expected something a little more romantic is all.

Bam bam! And I went – all I need to

do is slow down.”

Slow down your behaviour?

“Sex mode. Grab your hips and lick your lips…”

He slows down the beat. Think Teddy Pendergrass.

Or not.

Big Mike Nervous Al and Shaun sit down with Niles to peruse the upgrade options.

Big Mike: “I like all of those things – but I got

something of my own.”

In his Interview Segment Big Mike declares himself bigger better and more creative than the Bonanos others. The others – Nervous Al and Shaun – prove him right by buying all three gifts and splitting the tab.

You what?

No one’s ever accused me of being romantic.

No one has ever accused me of being cheap.

Nervous Al pays cash. That doesn’t mean he’s a drug dealer. Shaun pays American Express.

American decline.

No one’s ever accused me of being a millionaire – but I can relate.

Nervous Al to the rescue; he foots the whole bill and Shaun will pay him in the morn.

Garth the plumber isn’t happy. Megan is not like other girls. She hasn’t fallen at his pipes yet.

Maybe I’m not supposed to be here; if this

girl doesn’t like something I’ve

worked two years on.”

TFi: You’ve gotta read this.

Out of nowhere Garth hands me his credit

card and tells me he’s quitting.”

Garth: “Personally, your credit’s denied.”

I am denied? By him? Because I don’t

like his stupid song ‘Sex Mode’?

Niles: “Megan demanded satisfaction.”

Garth: “From a distance I thought I might be

compatible with you and after hanging out

with you I’ve come to the conclusion you’re

going to turn around and throw me away

like a… like a… a… I’m not into it.”

Not into vocabulary you mean.

I don’t care. You need to millionaire suck it

up, sit there, put a smile on your face

and be appreciative that you’re here.”

Me too.

I see what’s going on here. Garth is trying to

manipulate me. Two can play at this

game. But I do it better.”

You’ll get a kiss when you deserve one.”

That girl’s got skills.”

The next day is ski date. Niles has prepared the gifts and Nervous Al picks them up.

I walk right in front of Shaun and I’m amazed

that Shaun doesn’t come up and say

something tome. Hand me some

cash, talk to me, do something.”

2 times millionaire cheapskates.

So it’s time for my ski date and Al has a

dozen roses waiting for me.”

For real? You can ski in LA? Or did they take a Lear to Utah?

Megan’s happy but Shaun is being left in the cold on this one.

Remember Big Mike was going to get her something off the list?

Poor Shaun.

Megan grants alone time to all three. Nervous Al uses his to present the third gift – then further screws Shaun by bubbling him vis-à-vis the dodgy credit card.

Problem with his card as in his card

doesn’t have any money?


“I just think certain times are appropriate

for certain times.”

I just want to make sure that the lines of

communication – and the lines of credit

– stay open.”

It’s night time back at the mansion. It’s elimination time.

Good gosh.

Big Mike bought her that dress but it’s Al who gets there first.

Your credit is still good with me.”

Big Mike is #2 and so on so forth until

Four dudes left. Not all will be approved.

Alex is warned about purchasing granny panties – but his credit is fine tonight.

It’s me Shaun or Joe. I mean who would

get rid of this? Think about it.”

I made up my mind to get rid of Garth the

second he handed me his credit card last

night. But he’s not going to leave on his

terms. This is my house and he’s going

to leave on my terms.”

Your credit has been declined.”

I couldn’t believe it. It just happened so fast.”

Garth you big mouthed idiot. You weren’t supposed to go tonight. Baby Joe was.

Me too.

That leaves us with Shaun.

Megan: “I’m sorry. Your credit’s been denied. Again.”

Megan wants a millionaire with a backbone.

And a line of credit.

Next time on Megan Wants a Millionaire:

Baby Joe got game.

Read more Thrill Fiction: I $ Too

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