By Charlotte Hope, Lifestyle Editor @TLE_Lifestyle

The rise and fall of Amanda Bynes

I was a fan of The Amanda Show when I was younger but even then it was quite clear that Amanda Bynes had some relatively serious mental problems. I put it down to friendly old ADHD and forgot about her until the last year or so. Then she had some sort of breakdown in which she shaved her head and insisted on wearing incredibly cheap wigs pulled right down over her face. Apparently shaving ones head is a rite of passage for child stars turned adults. We’re looking at you, Britney.

Bynes compounded her breakdown last week by tweeting a series of unpleasant accusations about her father, claiming he ‘fondled himself in front of me so many times’. The tweets, and indeed Bynes’Twitter account, have been deleted now, but savvy internet folk/deplorable media hounds (delete as appropriate) saved screen shots just to ensure Bynes’recovery from what can really only be interpreted as a pretty serious mental breakdown is that extra bit difficult. She has since gone into behavioural rehab, which I certainly hope helps. Regardless of slightly manic sketch comedy, she’s clearly a person that needs some help and I hope she gets it.

Mariah Carey can’t sing anymore

 Mariah Carey named her last album ‘Me. I Am Mariah… The Elusive Chanteuse’. Rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? No, of course it doesn’t. It’s both ridiculous and incredible in completely equal measures. With a new album comes a promotional tour, where you can presumably spend a lot of your hard earned money on tickets to see the Elusive Chanteuse live on stage. Given the public nature of ticket sales and arena tours, I’m just not convinced Mariah knows the meaning of ‘elusive’, but that’s by the by. Do you remember her Cribs episode? Iconic television. I’ve never seen so many costume changes, and I used to do musical theatre.

The point of this story is that Carey’s concert in Japan as part of this tour left a lot to be desired, with many fans complaining that she couldn’t hit the high notes and performed terribly. At one point, fans said, it looked as though she forgot the words, though some fans have conceded that this could have been a microphone fault rather than a memory failing. I haven’t yet watched the footage because I can’t bear iPhone concert videos but if it’s true it must have been a real blow to those that spent a lot on tickets. Mariah hasn’t hit back at critics, yet, but then she is a self-styled elusive chanteuse so perhaps she never will.

Russell Brand

Russell Brand once again graces The Column. This time an excerpt of his new book has been published in the Guardian in which he implores us to open our eyes to our capitalist society. I happen to agree with him, but I’m deeply complicit in the society which he advocates change in, so it’s all quite confusing to me. Also I think he’s beautiful, but that’s neither here nor there.

It’s interesting to me how Brand has turned his celebrity status into one that is more revolutionary. Or, at least, is certainly moving that way. Life, after all, is not static. He recognises the hypocrisy inherent in denouncing a class system that he has, arguably, benefitted from and makes light of it, endearing himself to readers without coming across as preachy. It’s certainly worth reading and presumably so is the book which is out shortly. Even if you don’t necessarily agree with what Brand says, his way with words is so charming to read that it’s like taking a little boat up a canal, passing all sorts of whimsy on the way. For me, anyway.

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