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Juliana Hatfield’s Critique of “Celebrity Rehab”

I loved the Blake Babies. I loved the Juliana Hatfield Three. I loved “My So-Called Life,” on which she appeared for a Christmas episode as the homeless ghost girl. For me, rocker Juliana Hatfield will always be one of the defining women of the 1990s. So I was pretty pumped when I saw that she’d penned an op-ed for Stereogum about, of all things, “Celebrity Rehab.” And let’s just saw that homegirl can really write. Here’s what she had to say:

“I wanted to hate Heidi Fleiss. I wanted to hate her for pimping women out to men; for declaring proudly and shamelessly that ‘I was the greatest madam that ever lived’; I wanted to be mad at her for her clown-like, overstuffed pillow of an upper lip looking like some big muscly man punched her, hard, right in the mouth; and for her eyebrows yanked up so surgically high on her forehead; I wanted to look down on her for doing this to herself. But I can’t. Even as she answers Dr. Drew’s intake inquiry, ‘Any pregnancies?’ ‘Oh yeah … quite a few … I don’t know … thank god for abortions … just kidding’ in her jittery meth voice, flashing her crazy toothy grin, I feel for her.

She is the one character I am rooting for on the new season of ‘Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew.’ Maybe it’s because I have always felt lonely. And Heidi Fleiss is lonely these days. Really lonely.

Loneliness is her motif. ‘I’m so lonely.’ ‘I’m a lonely person.’ ‘Drugs can make anything okay. They can cure boredom,’ she says. And when she says it I understand why her days and nights are filled with drugs.

Julianna goes on to make the argument that cleaning up on national television is impossible—that having cameras in your face, inflating self-importance and giving you a taste of what’s almost like a drug to anyone of note (i.e., fame), negates the whole process. But why am I recapping what she says? Go read it here.

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