Thursday, November 24, 2005

Divorce Shocker Of The Year!

Whether tabloid journalism has honed its collective dirt-scouring skills to truly awe-inspiring precision, or have devised a sinister means of actually willing celebrity couples apart, gossip columnists all over the world are having a particularly self-satisfied Thanksgiving this year, and not just because they've found reasonable cause for over twenty "It's Thanksgiving. Be Nice. FUCK!" outbursts. Us Weekly reports:
A month after Us Weekly first reported on the breakup of Newlyweds Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey, the couple has jointly announced an official separation. 'After three years of marriage, and careful thought and consideration, we have decided to part ways,' the couple tells Us in an exclusive joint statement. 'This is the mutual decision of two people with an enormous amount of respect and admiration for each other. We hope that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.' Us Weekly first reported the couple’s split in its October 17 issue; at that time, Lachey's publicist issued a denial of an official separation. Just last week, Lachey partied alone with pals in Miami, on November 22, he attended the American Music Awards without his wife, one day after the New York Post reported that a porn star was peddling a seamy story about her night with Lachey (Lachey's attorney has denied any impropriety). Tellingly, at the AMAs, Simpson's father Joe Simpson told an Us reporter of his daughter's ongoing media scrutiny, 'We are Simpsons, we take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’.'

The telegenic couple wed in Austin, Texas in October 2002 in front of 250 guests. 'You don't think it's possible to love the man you're looking at any more. But when you say 'I do,' you somehow end up loving him even more,' Simpson told Us in October of 2004. 'When I walked down the aisle it was like Romeo and Juliet.' The duo became international celebrities by televising their first years of marriage on MTV's Newlyweds. While the show was wildy successful and the duo reaped the benefits of their newfound fame — both released albums and Jessica, who earned $35 million last year, landed a starring role in 2004's Dukes of Hazzard (in contrast, Nick's solo debut, only a paltry 105,000 copies)— reports of trouble have dogged the relationship since the second season of Newlyweds.

Says Lachey, "They're still the best yams I've ever candied."

But seriously, folks, various members of U.N. Spacy's upper-level staff have very recently revisited the glorious first season of The Newlyweds, and decided that you'd have to be daft to argue that this wasn't in the fucking cards. Even at that early date, one detects in Nick a certain... well let's call it loathing of Jessica. He spends most of his precious screen time bitching to his dramatically less dashing brother about what a moron Jess is. Conversely, Jessica spends most of her time alone, bitching to America about how Nick never hangs out with her, and commenting with disarming frequency on the uncontested fact that she herself is, in fact, a moron.

As much as America will want to find a victim a la Jen in this split, neither choice sells itself particularly well. Despite her best efforts to save the world, Jessica is truly the Queen of Harpies. For his part, Nick has done an admirable job of proving that a dim-witted, spoiled little brat of a princess is exactly what he wants from life. Nick's victim-ability will further dwindle with the inevitable - and necessary - rapid cuddle-up to another equally dense young ingenue, and finding his way into a swift betrothal, or facing the perils of the C-list cold turkey.

But perhaps there is a victim in all this: Joe Simpson. Like Doctor Frankenstein, he's watched the product he created (out of the marriage he feared more than breast cancer) soar to such lofty superhuman heights, then spent the last six months watching America pull it limb from limb at its stitches. Now this trademarked union will either lie down and die, its individual participants forced to Joey-like measures, or - more interestingly - direct the death rattle of the marriage, choppy waters of their accusation-laden divorce, and awkward forays into singledom back at reality television. Either an all-new splitcentric season of Newlyweds, or just a very special episode of Divorce Court. Whatever comes of this, we're due for a genuine precedent in the rethinking and remarketing of one of the most successful, inspired, and insipid comsumer products of the decade.

Also, just who is this Nick character, anyway?


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