Celebrity train wrecks fascinate and appal. But could they be our fault? | Opinion


Nine years ago, I flew to Detroit for what had by then become an international spectator sport: watching Charlie Sheen have a mental breakdown. In the previous months, Sheen had gone from “beloved bad boy cheeky chappie” to shattered wreck. He posted unhinged webcam videos in which he claimed to have “tiger blood”, and these proved so popular that he took the show on the road, in a tour titled Violent Torpedo Of Truth/Defeat Is Not An Option.

As a child, my parents took me to what was then the USSR, and we visited the Moscow State Circus. No one goes to a circus expecting to see happy wildlife, but the Moscow State Circus in 1988 took it to the next level. The animals were ragged, their fur patchy. I enjoyed a bear on a bicycle as much as the next 10-year-old, but watching…



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