15 Minutes of Fame…Or Less?

This morning as I was lazily watching a repeat of Two and A Half Men, my mind drifted back to a few short months ago. The star of the show, Charlie Sheen, had become the focus of the latest celebrity meltdown. However this particular public unravelling was unlike the rantings of a drunken Mel Gibson or the weeping mess of a Paris Hiltonesque figure. In the wake of Sheen’s dramatic fallout with producer, Chuck Lorre, following the escalating cycle of drug, spousal and hotel room abuse; Sheen appeared to embrace social networking.

After a series of bizzare public appearances, the man truly became unavoidable as he set up a Twitter account, setting a world record for being the fastest person to gain 1 million followers. This brings me to my main point… What happened to bring the media circus to a sudden end? Don’t get me wrong, Charlie Sheen has well over 4 million followers (at the time of writing) but his infamy as an internet celebrity has came to a sudden halt.

There was a point this year where not a single day would pass without anyone rehashing his nonsensical phrases such as “bi-winning” and “tiger blood” in an ironic fashion. Is it just me or in the age of the internet, when the public become fixated with a specific celebrity, they are not only voyeuristic (as they always have been with “car crash” like figures splattered over the covers of rags such as Heat and such) but also much more easily distracted and thus will lose interest in such stories at a faster rate than they have done in the past.

Furthermore, I’m just curious this way, why do people continue to care about the daily lives of such individuals?


4 Responses

  1. Celebrities problems may allow members of the public to forget about their own troubles for a while? Just a su.ggestion

  2. Escapism.

    Also, we know that no matter how terrible we look going home at 3 on a Saturday morning, the worst that can happen is that it ends up on Facebook, not the front page of Heat. So there’s an element of schadenfreude involved as well.

  3. I think the story hasnt been followed-up becuase by the time it was headline news, the whole situation involving his firing from ‘Two and a Half Men’ was already well underway. I guess there was no new revelations or continuing scandal, therefore there was no real newsworthy story left to generate.

  4. Charlie Sheen was actually the recipient of a ‘Comedy Roast’ very recently. It aired in the UK last night, actually, on Comedy Central and I’ve no doubt it’ll be repeated several times in the near future. I think America are still very much fixated on him as Ashton Kutcher’s time as Charlie Harper in Two and a Half Men begins imminently.
    It is a slightly perverted fixation the public has with him. He sleeps with porn stars, takes illegal drugs without being reprimanded and is hailed as a hero by millions of followers. Perhaps we like to see him do what we would probably all do given the money and fame he has?

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