[from a dream I had]
Talking points memo from strategic communications/public relations firm, to Whitney's translators: toss that nigga Bobby unda the Newark ta East Orange express bus, gurl! Run ya mouth about bein' a good wife. Takin' careya baby Bobby-Christine. The womens'll cry, nod. Uh-uh, we can relate gurl. Blame the drugs...hell, call Bobby the drug. We can relate, gurl...eEven the white housewives will related. Indeed in this sham of a post-racial millieu, hook them by saying hey, I'm just an E-OJ tackhead with a voice conferred by Jupiter, God, Vishnu and Allah...I'm not the gowns, the cutsey image, the Star Spangled Banner or The Bodyguard. I'm a "jeans and tee shirt" girl. They'll relate. I'm a sassy ghetto girl who was pressured into meeting your middle American expectations. Yes, they can get with that excuse. They love thatGet them to relate. Buy. Hell, I Do Bad All By Myself is Number 1 at the box office. Gullibility, retreat to rote, is what sells. What do you think branding is all about?
So fanboys & girls, Oprah set the stage, literary. Just she and Whitney, one on one. "Hard" questions. High ratings gimmick. Whitney Houston as first bit of pay-off and cross pollination between Clive Davis and Harpo Productions. Yes, folks, it's all artifice, all planned by white people sitting around tables with notes, iPhones and Blackberries, dead Fiji Water & Starbucks soldiers strewn before them. Yet we think it's chance, extemporaneous, even. Hearts, being poured out. Our idols, humanized.
What could be more humanizing that Whitney describing how to sprinkle crack into a joint, torpedo style. Oprah cracking up when Whitney recounts lolling about in bed all day, high and stink. Or both "powerful" women sharing a moment--what to do about their kept, less than successful menfolk, wink wink. What could be more contrived than Whitney's saga of darkness. It was better done, and funnier, when lampooned (like Walk the Line, Ray and any other damn biopic) by John C Reilley in Walk Hard.
So what's your take, folks? Perhaps it's rote: she's nuts, but she still's got that voice. And in the end, isn't that all we care about? Me, you, Clive, Oprah.