At the end of the legendary 1991 film, “Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey”, Bill and Ted’s band, The Wyld Stallyns, travel to the future and find out that through their music, the world is united in peace and love. Never thought I would live to see the day that the world is united like in “Bogus Journey”, but then the man who gained fame for the latest gossip coverage and drawing penises on celebrity photos using clip art, Perez Hilton decided to release a cartoon web series. “The Assisted Life” has drawn almost universal hatred for offending every major demographic and social group. Adding my thoughts on the quality of the series is a fruitless endeavor like calling the Jersey Shore crew unintelligent.
What I would like to examine is that the public failure of the “The Assisted Life” is an apotheosis of Perez Hilton brand and in the case of Perez Hilton, this is exactly what he wants. Perez Hilton has reached a level of fame greater than some of the celebrities on whose image he draws fake penises on due to enraging the populace that consume whatever he deals whether its the gossip mongering or frivolous controversies he creates. He has become the face of the outrage of exploitative celebrity culture. Many of my friends deplore Perez Hilton, but they are the first ones to consume every nugget of gossip he creates. His writing has been labeled as trashy, racist, misogynistic, irresponsible and surprisingly, homophobic towards the people he covers. So when Perez Hilton’s own cartoon web series is a reflection of all these traits, his public wonders how he could be so offensive and unleashes its furor on message board to no end. The comment and view totals are staggering on YouTube for for the 4-episode web series and there’s even more of them on his website. Despite the massive critical take down of the series, in 12 hours, the season finale has generated over 65,000 views and 827 comments, at least 80% negative earning a 2 star rating on YouTube. It has reached a level where you have to suspend disbelief for Perez not to realize the lynching it is receiving, yet he has not even commented on the cartoon or even apologized for the perceived offenses of the cartoon because he has made a comfortable living of being the enemy and at this point, does not even to expend much thought or calories to become a lightning rod.. I can go on how there are many better and funnier cartoon web series in which it appears that the creators actually burned some calories in its creation with far fewer success and viewers, but that is also a fruitless endeavor. It’s important to note that the 4th episode of “Assisted Life” was only it’s season finale. When the 2nd season begins, the world will unite again with furor against the video and we’ll send it to all our friends so that they can sneer at it and send it along and the cycle continues. We hate Perez Hilton, but he allows us to to feel temporary moments of superiority to the so-called “pretty people” and we can’t help ourselves. Rather than hate that part of ourselves that can’t help consume celeb culture, we give it a face and it’s Perez Hilton.