About this Blog

"In the future everybody will be world-famous for 15 minutes." So said the bleached-out, late lamented artist Andy Warhol. Having lived and worked in New York City, Warhol came to fully grasp the hold celebrity has on us. In this very famous sentence, he meant to point out that in a culture fixated on fame, many people will suddenly flash brightly onto the public screen, then--poof--will just as quickly disappear from public view--like shooting stars. Other individuals derive their celebrity from one stellar accomplishment (one hit song, one iconic role, etc.) that they never again match.

This blog is devoted to the one part of our celebrity culture that no one has written much about: temporary/one-shot celebrities.

The pace of modern life has quickened, and now we hear people speaking of someone's 15 seconds of fame. These "celebrities with a lower-case c" who will appear in this blog sometimes come to us from the world of entertainment, sometimes from the world of news. All are fascinating.

The need of our communications media for a continual stream of new material assures that we will have no end of colorful people who go quickly, where celebrity is concerned, from zero to hero (or villain) and back to zero. Now you see 'em, now you don't. What a crazy world, eh?

Temporary celebrities coming from the world of entertainment include one-hit recording artists; TV and movie icons who, although they might have had a great many accomplishments in their career, are remembered for one big role; standouts of reality TV; sports figures remembered for one remarkable accomplishment; and people whose celebrity came from one big role in a commercial or print ad.

News-based temporary celebrities come in many forms: mass/serial killers, other murderers of special note, sex-crime offenders, disgraced figures of government/military/business/media/religion, spies/traitors, hoaxers, femmes/hommes fatale, heroes, whistle blowers, inventors/innovators, and victims.

Celebrity Blogsburg will consider each category in turn.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Iconic TV role: John McGinley

TV viewers know actor John C. McGinley from his iconic role as Dr. Perry Cox, the acid-tongued attending physician who picks on the medical residents in the series "Scrubs."

McGinley was born in New York City and after majoring in acting, began getting supporting roles in movies and on a variety of TV shows. His movie credits include "Sweet Liberty," "Platoon," "Wall Street," Highlander II," and "Car 54, Where Are You?"

Among his early television appearances were "Spenser: For Hire," "Frasier," and "The Practice."

Dr. Cox is a solidly built mesomorph who loves dominating the show's main character, played by Zach Braff, a much smaller man whom Cox usually addresses as "Alice" or "Sally." In turn, Cox himself is picked on by the hospital's still larger janitor and also by their boss, the hospital's wizened chief of medicine.

Viewers enjoy the comedic gruffness of the Dr. Cox character and enjoy his biting remarks and his continual marital problems.

In real life, McGinley and his wife have a child born with Down's Syndrome, which understandably has become this actor's favorite cause as a fundraiser.

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