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‘There’s a sense that celebrities are irrelevant’: has coronavirus shattered our fame obsession?

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  • May 4th, 2020 8:41 am
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Mar 20, 2009
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‘There’s a sense that celebrities are irrelevant’: has coronavirus shattered our fame obsession?

Thread title is the headline of the following article:

https://www.theguardian.com/culture/202 ... -obsession

To be honest, a lot of what is mentioned in the article has been on my mind. Covid has changed so many things in our world, with a vast uncertainty as to whether things will ever revert back.

Here's a few snippets from the article:
The speed of the spread of Covid-19 has been one of the most astonishing things about it; the rate at which it emerged and upended all of our lives. It is no surprise, then, that it should affect celebrity culture in the same way. The pace at which artists of every kind responded to the crisis, mostly through their own social media channels, was only equalled by the ferocity with which the public clapped back as they exposed new depths of narcissism and privilege.
In the 21st century, it is hard to overestimate how far we’ve come in using celebrities to make sense of the world. They have inserted themselves in pretty much every facet of existence, from how to bake muffins to navigating war zones, and this is now broadly accepted as the norm. Again, this isn’t necessarily sinister: Tom Hanks’s Covid-19 diagnosis is credited with helping many Americans take the virus seriously (unlike, say, their president).
“I think one of the factors that is different about the virus is the sense that celebrities are appearing to the audience as irrelevant. The cure now lies with medical staff and with scientists and politicians. It’s becoming apparent, in a crisis like this, that whatever gestures celebrities have made, they’re as helpless as the ordinary person.”
One of the most dominant stories being told in this Covid-19 era is that it could lead us back to a kind of simplification, or detox, and this applies to showbiz, too; there seems to be a persistent hope this pandemic may yet sort the celebrity wheat from the sublebrity chaff. It is an impression that is reinforced when I speak to one senior showbiz publicist in London, who looks after a handful of old-school megastars. “Eurgh! Influencers!” he cries. If coronavirus does us one favour, he suggests, it would be to flatten the curve of the influencer boom.
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Deal Fanatic
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Mar 12, 2005
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I doubt it.

People are celebrities because they have access to our homes. You see people act in your favourite TV Shows, sing your favourite songs, star in your movies, etc... Then there's all the other ones I don't quite understand.

Still.. as long as there's TV, Music, Movies, Youtube channels, people can reach a whole lot more people. There will always be the celebrity unless we throw those things away.

I have no problem with celebrity. It gives people some escape. I wouldn't want to be one. I always felt the higher pay had the tradeoff of lack of personal space. I wouldn't be able to live like that. Kudos to those who can and keep us entertained :)
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Jun 16, 2009
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So they are suggesting the Influencer will disappear after this? One can only hope something that good will come from all this.
c'mon get happy!
Deal Guru
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Celebrities alway die with age first before actual death and its never graceful. But the silly raw idolatry and fanaticism of it all?? It would be awesome if covid was the enema to force that out. Then the fever subsides and the reality of recession flushes it all down the toilet. Celebrity brand is hands down the most expensive, time consuming, non essential, purposeless endeavor since building the pyramids.
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Feb 21, 2013
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I don't think it makes celebrities irrelevant, but I hope that what this pandemic shows is which celebrities are worth following because they're good people, vs which celebrities are so narcissistic and so removed from the realm of reality that we should be ignoring them. Madonna's most recent tirade about how COVID-19 is the "great equalizer" while bathing in a rose petal bath in her mansion showed just how awful some of these celebrities are, but on the flipside, I'm more apt to support folks like John Krasinski for what he's done with his SGN stuff.
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Apr 29, 2018
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I sure hope so. My guess is that this pandemic will force a lot of people to spend time at home, with their thoughts, and will help solve some of the problems all of us face
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M1GOmigs wrote: Madonna's most recent tirade about how COVID-19 is the "great equalizer" while bathing in a rose petal bath in her mansion showed just how awful some of these celebrities are,
It's probably just to get on the news because she has a new album coming out :D .
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rabbit wrote: It's probably just to get on the news because she has a new album coming out :D .
Yeah she's a master of marketing and reinvention, although at her age and relevance I don't know how many people actually gives a $h!7 about her. Last time I followed any news related to Madonna was when Guy Ritchie compared her to a piece of gristle.
c'mon get happy!
Deal Expert
Jun 30, 2006
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Have you seen the amount of social media followers these celebrities have? How is that showing that celebrities are irrelevant?
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Dec 22, 2014
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Nothing is likely to change as long as we return to some form of normal. The people rumbling and whining about celebrity did it before covid 19. Some of it is political too. Plenty of right wing propaganda trying to knock democratic/liberal celebs down a peg. I haven't seen any fanboys/girls renouncing their fandoms. People still want movies, TV and music. People will still watch YouTube.
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I agree there hasn't been any obvious signs of change to me but that doesn't mean its not happening, it could be changing right under our noses. Once everything is back to normal, let's see what the new normal is. A lot of businesses will close, the need for reliable online services and access has been made obvious, along with a need for taking better care of our healthcare, food safety and distribution systems.
My biggest issue is with the Hilton-Kardashian celebrityhood: celebrity for no reason. If there is less of that type after all this, I'd be happy. I don't even have a problem with Hollywood celebrity anymore, I find I can ignore it more easily than the newer breed.
c'mon get happy!

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