Monday, September 28, 2009

Incest Is Best (for Ratings, Anyhow)

I found Alessandra Stanley's take on the Mackenzie Phillips "comeback" performance last week on "Oprah" to be spot-on, mainly because I think she viewed the whole immoral circus the same way I did. That she lumps it in the same category as Tom DeLay's "Dancing With the Stars" comeback only adds to the fun: "Both spectacles were momentarily shocking, but not momentous: audiences have grown inured to weirder sights and sadder stories."

Like I did, Stanley notes Mack's "surprisingly matter-of-fact" recounting of the whole thing ("as a public service she wanted to tell the world that she willingly had sex with her rock-singer father, John Phillips"), how Mack "could hardly have offered viewers anything less" if she wants to sell her memoir, and Oprah's "polite but wary distance" from her guest, "as if bracing herself for the possibility that the story could be discredited." (Having finally heard that several people who aren't Mackenzie or people Mackenzie told -- like Denny Doherty's daughter and Owen Cass -- knew about the affair in the '80s has finally convinced me that she's being truthful, for whatever that's worth.)

Stanley ends with this wonderful thought:
Winfrey, who looked dismayed and quizzical throughout the narrative, couldn’t help asking when it was that Phillips realized, “how wrong and vulgar and shaming this all was." Wrong, vulgar and shaming. That’s the least of it, but these days, in Hollywood and Washington, it’s the price of re-entry.

Speaking of which, it seems Mack has landed herself a job on VH1's "Celebrity Rehab" (way to go, Dr. Drew!), which might explain why sis Chynna jumped on the Jesus bandwagon. (Can I come, too?)

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