the death of the celebrity profile

The Undead Celebrity Profile, Part VIIIIIIIXIXIXIIXIII

Long, long ago, the celebrity profile was declared dead. But then something terrible happened: It didn’t really die. Instead, the natural order of things shifted. Access to celebrities became vital to magazines’ survival, instead of the other way around, and the melding of the publicity and publishing machine begat a terrible creature: the zombie profile. These beasts, controlled by celebrities and their handlers, lurk within the pages of glossy magazines between perfume ads and often genuinely good things, where they lie in wait for humans to come along so they can suck the brains right out of them. Last night, Intel was attacked by one such creature. Let us recount the harrowing tale.

Scene: It was dark and unseasonably cold. We were waiting for the R train, and all we had was a copy of Bazaar. We had finished the story about hedge-fund wives (apparently adapting to the new reality means buying potted plants instead of fresh flowers) when we idly turned the page to the profile of cover subject Halle Berry by one Laura Brown. It was a Q&A, which is never a good sign, but it started out well enough, with a funny quote from Zoolander. Alas, the good times were not to last.

The first sign something was wrong appeared when this statement from the actress slid by unchallenged:

I like Doritos. I’m usually watching The Biggest Loser eating Doritos.

Light-headed, we pressed on … until we got to this question from the interviewer:

LB: With your fragrance, Halle by Halle Berry, you are selling the essence of yourself. How will women respond?

Ahhhhhh! Ahhhh! A terrible sound roared in our ears. The train! We got on it, and in our haste, abandoned the magazine on the bench. As soon as we were onboard we realized we should have destroyed it. But it was too late. The doors were closed. As the train rolled away, we saw it lying there. Waiting for its next victim.

Hallelujah [Bazaar]

The Undead Celebrity Profile, Part VIIIIIIIXIXIXIIXIII