Pretty Hate Machines

The sick, sublime joy of celeb-bashing blogs

Go Fug Yourself versus People magazine; Perez Hilton versus Star; Manolo the Blogger versus Lucky: There's little debate which are more entertaining. Go Fug Yourself and similarly-minded blogs best mainstream magazines with their own brand of celeb-skewering snarkiness, and with a boldness that can only come when one works unfettered by the shackles that encumber larger publications. Call it the sweet blessings of unaccountability, but one must marvel at those who needn't play nice-nice, needn't perform any delicate dance with Julia Roberts' pr to secure a precious one-on-one with America's Favorite Wench-in-Hiding, complete with a bonus photo diary of her equally fascinating offspring. Even with a limited photo base to work with—must every single site show the same unfortunate stain on Mischa Barton's white jeans?—these blogs, from the purely fashion-focused to the more rumor-obsessed, are worth a perusal.

Here are our favorite of these blogs, largely organized by what they do best.

Finest use of Photoshop: Nothing escapes the keen eyes of Pink is the New Blog, which concerns itself with all types of celebrity lambasting, sartorial style included. Arrows point to flashes of errant celebrity panty; the blog's trademark pink stencil lettering announces "CHER COMES TO TOWN" over photos of a raven-haired Lindsay Lohan. Similar sites: The Superficial, A Socialite's Life, Celebrity Smack, Junk Feud, The People We Love to Hate.

Greatest audience participation: On the community board for Live Journal site Oh No They Didn't, all it takes is a posted photo of Wizard of Oz's Cowardly Lion juxtaposed with a shot of Mariah Carey in a fur coat the same color as the lion's mane, and the comments fly: four pages' worth, to be exact.

Best imitations of InStyle: Want to dress like Scarlett? Drip in bling like Beyonce? Sites The Celeb Life and Sparkle Like the Stars point out ersatz, budget versions of the couture and jewels favored by the celebs. Sad little sites, but they'll save browsers the $3 they normally drop on InStyle.

Blogosphere luminaries: If you believe his bio page, gossipmonger Perez Hilton has a pet poodle named Mariel, loves "animals, enemas, and animus," and resides in Manhattan. Funny then, how he can score so many West Coast photos and shamelessly smack his website name on all of them. His "Make a Donation" bit is pathetic, the site often ventures into the patently offensive, but any man who posts up a picture of Tinseltown freakazoid Crispin Glover's purported love interest and compares Schwarzenegger's busted lip to Katie Holmes' pucker deserves a nod. We're also rather fond of Manolo the Shoeblogger—no relation to Manolo Blahnik—who concentrates on straight-up footwear fashion, with frequent commentary on celeb style. Recent posts discuss Queen Latifah's transformation, David Hasselhoff, Season's Greetings from Trump, and Malibu Barbie Frieda Kahlo.

Still the meanest queen in the high school cafeteria: A problem with many of these sites is that they tend to substitute rote bitchiness for wit. That's when we turn again to Go Fug Yourself, by far the cleverest of the coven. Here is Fugger Heather, commenting on Talan from Laguna Beach's sporty zip-up: "I get where you're going with it, I do. But it's a little...Allegedly Sexually Threatening European Tennis Pro In An 80s Teen Movie, don't you think?" Here is Fugger Jessica, discussing a dress worn by Grey's Anatomy star Katherine Heigl: "Katherine Heigl is beautiful…So I am very confused as to why she would wrap said body in what appears to be kitchen curtains covered with some kind of terrible Salute to Split Pea-colored tulle overlay…this dress is like an Homage to Pleasantville Told Through The Assorted Fabrics of My Grandma's Sitting Room." And one more, from Heather, about a "random fug" sporting a top that exposes her scary-looking bellybutton: "That is chapped evil, right there. You are staring into the eye of Satan. Have you ever seen the South Park 'Woodland Critter Christmas' episode? If you have, then you'll understand why the words 'blood orgy' are so appropriate here. And if you haven't, well, you are figuratively (and in some ways literally) staring at the belly of the beast in this photo. That thing is all monster. Don't stare at it too long, or you'll be compelled to drink the blood of a righteous woman while carving pentagrams into the walls."

 
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