The Six Most Egregiously Overrated Celebrities

1. Chloe Sevigny – First things first, hats off to anyone willing to give Vincent Gallo a beej in an already terrible movie. That girl is a trooper of the highest order, and deserves that respect. That being said, I’ve always been perplexed at the amount of undying respect and love she seems to get from the “artsy” crowd for being, at best, a mediocre actress. Sure, she’s had a couple good roles, but she mostly just seems to have graduated Salutatorian from The Cool Hipster Monotone Girl’s School For Acting (founded in 1865 by Janeane Garafalo). And while she may not have the twee charm and staggering little girl dress collection of Valedictorian Zooey Deschanel, she certainly carries a similar level of admiration from the same crowd. I suppose that people associate her lack of inflection and general feminine appeal as making her intelligent and a “serious” actress, although I have my disagreements (see: Vincent Gallo), but does not really doing a whole lot of acting suddenly put you beyond the Mumblecore Hall of Fame and into the stratosphere of Actress I Totally Want to Hang Out With? Judging by the amount of pictures of her breasts on Tumblr, I would assume that such is the case. I suppose with people like Chloe, the hipster masses just project whatever image they have onto the actor from their slew of cool, artsy roles and imagine that they are the kind of girl that would come to their house party, listen to their favorite LPs and maybe, eventually, bang them (see: Vincent Gallo).

Source: Kerosene Photography

2. Justin Bieber – And I don’t mean that he’s overrated in the positive sense, I mean he is far too overrated in the negative one. People have latched onto him, as people beyond the age of 17 tend to do with any “tween sensation,” as the object of their blind, consuming, often grammatically incorrect hatred. Every internet forum, YouTube video comment section, and self-righteous conversation between struggling musicians cites Bieber as the nadir of the music industry and possibly the first true sign of the Apocalypse. And though I would surely love him myself if I were twelve, (if the actual 12-year-old me who would have gotten all five Backstreet Boys’ names tattooed on my forehead in a heartbeat is any indication) I can’t say that as a twenty-something, I fully comprehend the hatred. Maybe I’m not in step with my generation, but I have to say, of all artists–Justin Bieber? If not writing his own music, being auto-tuned, looking extremely feminine, or being a product of an industry that cares not if he has stage-4 cancer so long as he makes his tour dates is unsettling to you–well, you can pick almost any popular musician today to hate. No, I think it’s his massive popularity that makes him so roundly despised. And yet, if the internet community should hate anyone so much, it’s ironic that it would be Beiber. No, he didn’t just answer some anonymous cattle call asking for 5 angel-faced teenage boys that Lou Perlman could lock in a basement and sweatily exploit until a hit song came out–he gained a cult following on YouTube by…what’s that? Singing! Singing adorable little songs at church functions and state fairs and in his bathroom. People slowly started to catch on, enjoy, and share his work. Eventually, record execs and established musicians caught notice and fought a little over the rights to his lucrative future. Usher won. The rest is history. Hate Britney Spears, that woman has been riding on having no talent and being sexy for about 8 years since she stopped actually being sexy. Shouldn’t you all take more umbrage with that.

Source: David Shankbone

3. Taylor Swift – Okay, okay, the girl can write a song. And perform them. And play an instrument. That makes her more talented than most other performers in the pop/country realm. And, yes, she manages to stay somewhat chaste with her public image (at least remembering to put on underwear when she’s going for a 3 AM stroll in a micromini). Although let’s be honest, she can’t afford to slip up and lose all that sweet, sweet Red State money. She’s gotta keep her clothes on, Jesus doesn’t want us to see her cooch. But anyone with more than three brain cells to rub together must have realized by now that literally all of her songs are the same. She likes a boy and there is some unforeseen difficulty, which ultimately resolves itself just in time for him to pick her up on his white horse with the Confederate flag draped over its side and take her to prom. Side note–she’s been going to prom for about six years now. Is she going to graduate from high school at some point? Anyway, it seems to be the consensus in America that she’s a good role model for young girls because she’s a “real” musician who doesn’t need to rely on sexuality or vulgar language to succeed. But somehow I feel that talking endlessly about sex would almost be more empowering to young girls than sending the message that the only thing you should be concerned about is whether or not Tommy likes you. Forget an education or dreams of your own, run to Tommy’s house in the middle of the night and serenade him. Or, better yet, linger on the sidelines at the big game and bat your eyes until Tommy notices. Guys like girls who are coy. But bring eye drops, it could take a while.

Source: Matthew Field

4. Kanye West – The tenuous, love/hate, occasionally abusive relationship that white people have with Kanye West is a thing to be admired. He is somewhat artsy and dresses like Bill Nye at a gay pride parade, he shits all over Taylor Swift and exists only as one big publicity stunt–he’s a parody of himself, we like him. But I’ve read so many SUPER SERIOUS articles this past year in everything from Cracked to Rolling Stone about how Kanye West had the greatest album of the year, how he’s a musical genius, how he’s changing the face of hip hop, etc etc. Perhaps I missed the memo that went around society about ten years ago when we decided that taking other people’s music and making it skip again and again while you talked over it was somehow even in the same league as real music. There is incredibly good hip hop out there, stuff that elevates poetry to a visceral level that it sometimes can’t achieve when stuck on paper. However, Kanye writing the lyrical equivalent to masturbating in front of a mirror with shutter shades on and putting it over copies of other people’s songs does not an album make. I don’t care how cool the macaroni art of other people’s music he makes sounds on a movie trailer, there are about a billion other artists who deserve the accolades more than he does

Source: Angela George

5. Bill Maher – People who love Bill Maher puzzle me. On the one hand, his writers do occasionally use him as a megaphone for some rather incisive jokes. And I think Religulous was an important, hilarious, eye-opening, terrifying documentary. But even that film was somewhat mahrred (pardon the pun!) for me by his (ironically) preachy, condescending tone. His voice drips with superiority and smugness, as if everything he says is the most intelligent, witty, counter-culturally interesting thing anyone has ever heard. And his trained seal show of an audience is happy to laugh sycophantically and clap at every general virulent statement he makes (I’m pretty sure between takes they throw salmon into the stands to joyful cries of “Arf! Arf!”). But regardless of whether you agree with his politics or not, the know-it-all tone with which he conveys every message and the unintentionally hilarious parade of brain-dead celebrities that come on to his show to reveal how uninformed they are must at some point become grating. Ashton Kutcher? Really? I’m sorry, I don’t care how many Twitter followers you and your creepy wife have, I’m pretty sure I’d rather listen to someone who has even a peripheral involvement with the situation in Lybia. And the last thing Sean Penn needs is another place to espouse his smug beliefs and give himself a stroke trying to work up some self-righteous tears to go with his half-baked ideas. But even without the celebrities, Maher’s blind, oversimplified view of the world and his easy, dumb jokes–are just exhausting. That being said, he did date Karrine Steffans for a long time. Credit where credit is due, that girl is gorgeous.

6. Meryl Streep – Just kidding, Meryl Streep’s fucking awesome. TC mark

image – Boys Don’t Cry

Chelsea Fagan

Chelsea Fagan founded the blog The Financial Diet. She is on Twitter.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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  • beej

    you clearly haven't seen big love

    • I-am-an-elderly-citizen

      exactly. or american psycho for that matter.

  • Kat

    Scrolled through quickly, saw Meryl Streep and I almost let loose on you. Totally agree with the Taylor Swift. I could write my own songs too Taylor Swift if they all sounded exactly the same and had similar content.

  • Brandon

    i never understood the hate on Chloe Sevigny. the others, yes, even though i won't/can't speak for them. chloe gets undying love and respect from the “artsy” crowd because she's one of the first ones to come from that whole scene/generation. she had a starring role in KIDS, that alone speaks for itself. she was labeled the “it” girl in like what?, 1995?

    help me understand chelsea.

    • AaronWB

      I'll always love Sevigny for her role in Gummo. How many famous actresses would do that movie when they can get roles in mainstream films? She's a successful actress who cares about something other than becoming rich and famous– shockingly, she actually seems to care about interesting projects. Seems really unique.

      I think she is way cooler than Zooey Deschanel. Has Zooey Deschanel actually made a good movie? Elf?

      • SisterRay

        Zooey Deschanel's best movie is probably Almost Famous. She was perfect for her (small) role in that.

      • josephine

        how does being in a movie for 5 minutes count as a role, not to be that guy

  • Thoughtpuddles

    Agreeing hard on Bieber.

  • http://twitter.com/rawiya rawiya kameir

    “The tenuous, love/hate, occasionally abusive relationship that white people have with Kanye West is a thing to be admired.”

    So the relationship black people have with Kanye West is somehow different? Or is it just not to be admired?

    • T6

      agreed. i'm kind of lost on the relevance of bringing up “white people.” Do only white people have hateful feelings for him, while black people must only love him… because… they're black?

      sheesh.

    • http://twitter.com/Incandescere Candace Nicholson

      I've found that most black people either consistently love Kanye or consistently hate Kanye. They don't go back and forth between hating him with the fiery passion of a thousand suns to buying front-row concert tickets on his next tour. I see that behavior far more often from white people.

      • Greg

        very true

      • http://staugustine2.wordpress.com/ STaugustine

        I suspect I know the name of your favorite movie, Candace Nicholson…

  • jxshafr

    If you bothered to put any effort into listening to Taylor Swift's music, you would realize that most of the criticisms you directed against her are only applicable to her debut and 'Fearless'.

    She's grown up significantly in 'Speak Now' – it's not all just about landing Tommy (BTW, she's never dated anyone called Tommy neither has she named a guy Tommy so I don't see where this came from). 'Dear John' is a pretty caustic rip as is 'Innocent' and 'Better than Revenge'. Even 'Mine' is about growing up and facing adulthood.

    I kind of stopped reading after that because it's clear you haven't taken the time to consider the material that these artistes have put out before slapping the overrated label onto them. Also, I think Kanye West is an absolute douchey piece of douchepie, but 'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy' is groundbreaking material that deserves any accolades that come its way.

    • T6

      hahahahahahahaha

    • loller

      lol

      Someone cares a little too much about this…

    • Francois

      I'm not sure if you're being hilariously sarcastic if you're actually serious. Either way I just had a good ol' fashion LOL.

      • Francois

        *or if

    • Anonymous

      I've never met a 13 year old who knows the word “accolades.”

    • Catt

      “'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy' is groundbreaking material that deserves any accolades that come its way.”

      Yeah, okay…

    • Sa

      I'm laughing at your confusion at the name Tommy being used.

  • Heron

    Yeah the Justin hate puzzles me and I think you nailed it regarding the hate being about his popularity. People want to see a Hero fail, fall…

  • HHR

    What's good Hip-Hop?

  • Beiber

    Libya

    • bee

      nope, pretty sure she meant labia.

  • Casey Jones

    “Perhaps I missed the memo that went around society about ten years ago when we decided that taking other people’s music and making it skip again and again while you talked over it was somehow even in the same league as real music.”

    That's gotta be troll bait? Right?

  • http://thetangential.com Becky Lang

    yeah i never got the chloe sevigny thing either. i think americans feel like they can mention her all the time and people will be impressed they can pronounce her name while feeling intimidated that they don't know who she is.

    • Greg

      I want to bang her….soooooo bad

    • Krissie

      Not all of us :P I can’t pronounce her name at all, and I can’t remember a single movie I’ve seen her in.

  • How to be a Troll

    I love all of the these celebrities and that means you must be a despicable person. That's logical right?

  • Tim

    Is Girl Talk over rated then? People just hate Kanye because of his ego. When College Dropout came out, nobody was going 'yeah this stuff's ok but it's all samples so it's actually pretty average'. Plus, I don't know if you ever noticed but um every great hip hop beat EVER used a sample.

    Kanye is acclaimed for his brilliance in making music that stands on its own as a song, rather than just being a solid beat for someone to rap over. Sure, NY State of Mind is a great beat, but would it be worth listening to if it only had a chorus? Not really. On the other hand, Gold-Digger et al would be. Kanye isn't a great rapper by any stretch of the imagination, but it's his ability to make an entire song out of a sample, rather than just a one off brilliant moment that goes on for an entire track (XXplosive I'm looking at you).

    It's also his ability to conceptualise. I don't know if you remember what the rap landscape was like back in the early 2000s, but the idea of someone rapping about being a college dropout and living with their mom was simply unheard of. When I talk to my room-mate who was raised in Chicago like Kanye, and who saw him at age 16, pre-College Dropout, I can begin to understand how absolutely mind-blowing it would have been for a rapper to do something like that. Songs like 'Jesus Walks' simply didn't exist in mainstream rap up until that point. You'd have to go for your Kweli or Hill types for that.

    Drake, The Weeknd, Kid Cudi, Lupe Fiasco, and even Wale wouldn't exist if it wasn't for Kanye's influence, both lyrically and musically. Plus the full extent of an artist's influence isn't seen for decades. Look at Radiohead's influence and you'd say that their imitators aren't particularly inspiring: Muse, Coldplay, etc. But in 20 years time they'll be even more influential than they are now. Same with Kanye.

  • http://twitter.com/paulhansonclark Paul Clark

    I like Chloe Sevigny, Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, Kanye West, and Meryl Streep.

  • http://twitter.com/cream_dreamz Stephanie Jones

    Don't you mess with Meryl Streep!

  • Seanmaciver

    I don't understand the Kanye criticism – or at least not in regards to his new album. Saying hiphop is just “taking other people’s music and making it skip again and again while you talked over it was somehow even in the same league as real music” is a used up argument. Kanye is a lot of things and some of them are very negative. But his new album doesn't do what you describe. Yes, there are occasional samples that are recognizable.However, the rest is him creating lush multi layered arrangements.

    • wackomet

      Yeah, that line about “real music” is fairly ignorant. Not just in terms, of Kanye, either.

      • humblecore

        Indeed. It's the same thing people have been saying about rap for the last 40 years or so.

  • http://staugustine2.wordpress.com/ STaugustine

    Next article: “Fire is hot, water is wet and does anyone out there like ice cream!?”

  • soloman

    I wish I could add you to this list

    • FredHampton

      Is Chelsea a celebrity? Like, should I try and get her autograph?

  • Naya

    “Things people cared about 8 months ago and Bill Maher”

  • Josue

    I agree with one thing, Meryl Streep is awesome. The rest is basically your opinion. I am over the 17 year old mark you put for Justin and I don't care one way or another about him. He is a singer I don't listen to and don't discuss. Taylor Swift I enjoy and as previously posted comes out with more songs than the waiting for a boy to notice me ones. Kanye, same as Justin, don't listen to his music or discuss him. Bill is far from overrated, he just is. As for Chloe Sevigny, never heard of her, so can't like or dislike her. You are calling people overrated because you feel they are overrated. Any celebrity in the limelight could be considered overrated based on their acting abilities, singing ability, just being (reality stars), famous for being famous (rich heirs, heiresses) or anything along those lines. So, your list is moot. Oh, and if you're going to get a big head about how I read it and noticed you, it was only because a friend posted the link and I thought I was going to actually read some quality information.

  • http://twitter.com/calamity rebecca

    Chloe Sevigny gives consistently fantastic performances on Big Love.

  • abe

    Let's not backpedal your original statement about hip-hop not being “real music.” You make a tired, uninformed argument that's as valid as saying collage or pastiche is not “real art.” Then you acknowledge there's “good hip hop” that “elevates poetry to a visceral level”? Hip-hop is less poetry and more performance art, a distinction you need to make before making any sweeping statements about an entire genre of music. You want visceral poetry, read T.S. Eliot.

    If you don't think hip-hop is real music, at least own that argument completely. Don't pad your opinion with a soft lining so you avoid the kind of backlash you got for your TC piece on the slut march. It's not only dishonest to the reader, it's annoying.

  • Guest666

    hahahhaha your thoughts on chloe made me think this was a piece from the early 00's or something. she's been in dope movies, she's cute, and has had a consistent career with moments of excellence. and, yo, this type of shit perpetuates her having some supposed 'overrated' admiration more than anything…she's not some jeweled prize of the 'artsy crowd'(yo, she's on tv and shit) and 'masses of hipsters' ain't really checkin for her on the reg.(they're chattin shit about the cute girl in that band that plays at diy venues, really).

    hahahahahahaahhahaa your thoughts on kanye made me think of [misguided] indie rock journalists that try and dissect hiphop(see: articles on ofwgkta GOLF WANG) except you're an idiot and you probably don't appreciate hiphop at all…not that you have to, but it's pretty funny that you offer “stuff that elevates poetry to a visceral level” right after the ignorant statement that preceded it.

  • http://twitter.com/andshewasnt genna mae

    The appearance of Chloe and Zooey's (haaaaah rhyme!) names within this list should've been switched.

  • Chris

    “Perhaps I missed the memo that went around society about ten years ago when we decided that taking other people’s music and making it skip again and again while you talked over it was somehow even in the same league as real music.”

    are you serious? as much as you might hate it and as annoying as it CAN be sometimes……sampling is like the all-time hallmark of rap music. the memo? ten years ago? lol are you kidding me? how old are you?

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