Maximum Impact 06.01.06

We will all know by now if the rumours circulating within the media
this week are correct and Michael Barrymore is about to resurface on
Celebrity Big Brother. If it’s true, then Barrymore (left) will be
hoping that there is life after death and that programmes like Big
Brother and I’m a Celebrity can continue to give fallen or forgotten
stars the fame fix they crave. For Barrymore, any opportunity to get
back on British television will be taken like a drowning man grasping
out for a hand up. All that matters to people like him is fame and they
will do virtually anything to get it – as life is pretty meaningless
without it.

We all remember the death in Barrymore’s swimming
pool of Stuart Lubbock, a young man he brought back to his home and
whose death still remains a mystery. The events of that night left such
a bad taste in the hearts and minds of the British public that they
made it abundantly clear they could no longer be entertained by such a
man.

But controversy sells, which of course is why Endemol would
accept public offence and outrage by bringing Barrymore back. It
achieves huge media coverage and potentially opens a door which has
been firmly shut in Barrymore’s face since the events of March 2001.

Will
it rekindle his career? I doubt it. I knew Barrymore as well as I
wanted to and Cheryl – his ex-wife – extremely well. I spent a lot of
time with her in the months leading up to her death last year and know
only too well what he did to her.

Which shamed celeb will be the
next to benefit from resuscitation by reality TV? Will it be Gary
Glitter and Jonathan King, taking us even further down the Barrymore
road?

Times are always desperate for fallen stars looking for
their fix of fame. There are many TV viewers who enjoy this kind of
entertainment, but to me it brings to mind those who stop to stare at a
bad road accident – as Kenny Everett used to say, of course its all in
the best possible taste.

The fee for this column is donated to the Rhys Daniels Trust

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