My interest in reality television runs its course when a series ends. The resulting deals – guest spots on the Tuesday Night Project, tabloid coverage, Heat covers, OK covers, Hello covers, Now covers, Next covers – they’re all for morons, right?
So what the hell is going on with the coverage of Jade at the moment? The bizarre, sentimental freakiness of the last few days is enough to turn the stomach – both at the soft-focus, Max Clifford exploitation festival it’s becoming and also at the outright hypocrisy that’s dribbling out of the television and from the mouths of idiot journalists.
It’s not just the tabloid press. The higher-minded (but just as manipulative) broadsheets and nightly talking heads are also enjoying a spurt of repulsive self-analysis, disguised as altruism and goodwill. I’ve seen features on Newsnight and in The Observer and The Times – and no doubt I’ve missed many others.
Jade Goody occupies a very weird position in public knowledge. She’s the epitomy of the untalented celebrity, celebrated for nothing. Her normality is what made her famous and with fame as her ultimate aim, once she reached that peak there was nothing left for her to do but milk it. She was born without a silver spoon and with no talent to speak of, so all she could do was sell herself. And bizarrely, people handed over their cash.
The worst thing about this current state of affairs is the presence of circling vultures, literally waiting for the death of their prey before they can cash in their chips. So – I’ll share a few of my questions before my head implodes at this phenomenon.
- Who is actually watching LivingTV’s ‘Jade’ – her new reality show in which the casual, morbid voyeur can watch a familiar face degenerating and dying?
- Isn’t this a shameful enterprise, devoid of actual, meaningful content and consisting of nothing other than celebrity death?
- It’s tasteful enough when it’s onscreen, but isn’t the screen soiled with sensationalism and grotesquery when the show’s switched off?
- Who is that buys ‘Hello’ magazine so they can gawk at shots of Jack and Jade sharing their last, personal moment in front of millions?
- How much does Max Clifford make in all this?
Jade and her family are being exploited to the tune of a few a thousand quid, earning it in a grim race against time so they can chuck soiled notes in a gaping grave. It’s as simple as that.
‘Ah’ – they counter… ‘but who is exploiting who?!’
As they say this they make that ‘aren’t I clever?’ face and raise an eyebrow as though they’ve made the most brilliant and insightful second hand comment in history. And, to be fair, it’s a difficult question to answer – the money she’ll receive will be monumental… but where’s the soul? The dignity? The meaning?
Can somebody let me know?