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The Kardashians and Their Ilk Have Devalued Fame
You've heard the statement a thousand times: "if you really want to make it in show business, it's all about who you know" or "it's who you know and who you blow". The latter applies mostly to women, but there have undoubtedly been a few guys who have gotten down on their knees for a role --- even those who naturally prefer different plumbing. Just as wanting to own a successful retail business such as a restaurant is all about "location, location, location", wanting to be a successful actor, comedian, musician, etc. is all about "connections, connections, connections". Wouldn't it be nice if talent player a larger role?
In the 21st century with the advent of socialites such as Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie, the Jersey Shore cast and most recently the Kardashians (namely Kim), talent is no longer a prerequisite to becoming not only successful in show business, but a superstar. In the past, one had to at least have a modicum of talent to achieve fame. Nowadays, it's less about the "modi" and more about the suffix. Sure, the casting couch has always been a factor at times vis-a-vis getting a break in the business but back in the day one at least needed talent be invited to the love sofa before going on to fame and notoriety. It really seems that nowadays, talent is third or fourth on the list of prerequisites in regards to climbing the show biz ladder. Sure, there have been many talented people that have made it, but for every one of them there are at least ten people with equal or more talent that either never made it, are still struggling to, never will make it or had to struggle for way too long to make it before getting a "lucky break" and becoming an "overnight success".
That last one really gets to me! Hollywood loves to label someone an "overnight success" when they go from obscurity to mainstream and finally break through after ten plus years of busting their butt and having had one door after another slammed in their face. All of this while watching others with a fraction of the talent (or in the case of the Kardashians, no talent whatsoever) stroll right through.
As in Sports, Talent Should be Valued More
It's sickening how much politics plays a role in the entertainment business. This author has experienced it first hand in the world of comedy. How many times have you watched a comedian on television doing stand-up who is either mediocre or stunningly unfunny and asked yourself "Jesus, how the heck did they get on television? I know comics who are so much funnier that should have been on that show". Clearly, there is more politics in show business than there is in politics.
Of course, connections and who you know exists in all industries throughout life not just the entertainment industry. Politics certainly exists in sports too (don't get me started on boxing!), however, statistics and their level of importance in regards to an athlete's degree of success is what separates the two. In 2014, if an athlete is one of the top three best college basketball players in the nation, barring a major injury, you can bet the farm he is going into the NBA and making millions of dollars. It doesn't matter if he has the right look, has the right agent or is friends or related to the right people. If the dude averaged 22+ points, ten rebounds and eight assists and led his team to an NCAA title he's in like Flynn!
The Public Suffers Under the Current System
Baseball is probably the sport which places the most weight on statistics. If a guy is lighting it up in the minors, he's going to the major leagues regardless of his appearance or if he has schmoozed enough to ascend the athletic ladder. In comedy, a guy can literally be the universally funniest son of a bitch around and not even make it on television, let alone become a star and earn millions of dollars.
Sure, humor is extremely subjective (even more than beauty in my opinion) but that is why I stated "universally the funniest". An actor or actress can literally be the best actor in the world and never become a mainstream star and certainly not achieve anywhere near the degree of fame that the Kardashians have, neither of whom can act their way out of a paper bag. The same is true of a singer, writer or any other artist.
Under the current, longstanding system in which those with little to no talent can attain wealth and fame, the public are suffering unknowingly. Great, undiscovered talent who are a victim of this absurdity end up languishing in obscurity. As a result, the masses end up losing out on being entertained by someone who has genuine, God given talent which has been cultivated through hard work. It would be so wonderful if success in show business was more like sports and based largely on talent and less on politics, connections, sex tapes and nepotism. Some would argue that the cream ALWAYS rises to the top. If they mean after it is stroked and manipulated, we categorically agree.