Oh, TomKat, what the hell happened?
The Tom Cruise – Katie Holmes divorce has been plastered all over the pages of every magazine, Internet news pages and television shows. The marriage and the divorce all came down faster than you can say the words “train wreck”.
I have to confess that since the day Cruise was spotted jumping on Oprah’s couch declaring his love for the young Katie Holmes, well, I was already over it.
Having followed Cruise’s career since the early days of films like Risky Business, Rain Man and The Firm, I found it hard to not love the guy. He was, and is, superb at his craft. That smile, his vulnerability, and the acting chops of a veteran twice his age; he always managed to pull us into his characters and make us care what happened to them. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for real life.
There is something so cocky, so surreal about this man that we are always left to wonder; does he kick puppies and lock up his wife when the cameras are turned off?
The Church of Scientology has played a big part in his accepted ‘weirdness’ but so has his arrogance and self appointed superiority. Who can forget the time he publicly chastised Brooke Shields for taking anti-depressants after the birth of her child, advising her that she should rely on vitamins for her depression? Or when Tom called Matt Lauer ‘glib’ on national television on the Today Show? Who did he think he was anyway, God? Evidently.
The orchestrated split by Katie Holmes looks much more like an escape plan than a divorce. With 3 different attorneys in place in 3 different states, utilizing throw away cell phones to make calls, and striking when her husband was filming in Iceland; it all amounted to pure genius. She went from being the innocent girl on Dawson’s Creek to being a hero for unhappily married women everywhere.
The fact that she got what she wanted faster than butter melts on a high flame causes us to wonder what she had over Tom. Whatever it is, it must be a doosie (I know it’s a made up word but just go with it). She not only received sole custody of their only child but is said to have been awarded a 10 million dollar settlement and a tidy little property to boot. Not bad after 5 years of marriage. Where can I sign up? Hell, I put up with a lot worse for a lot longer to get a lot less. And I do mean a LOT less (Yes, I know. My bitterness is showing).
Control issues, Church of Scientology issues, and the alleged gay issue have surfaced for years and swarm around Cruise like moths to light. Still, nothing has been proven or even addressed openly by anyone who might be in the know.
It all leads to speculation, gossip, finger pointing and a whole lot of silence from the parties involved. Fear and confidentiality agreements generally guarantee discretion, as can a healthy bribe. Uh, I mean, pay off, no, I mean settlement.
The bigger question might be; why do we give a damn? When it comes down to it, it’s really none of our business and has absolutely no affect on our everyday lives.
So what’s the big intrigue with celebrity divorces?
I have a sneaky suspicion that we like to see rich people fail, flamboyantly happy people fall into despair and the infallible become fallible. We usually don’t have to wait too long. Welcome to the dark side of humanity.
In celebrity-ville, there have been very few that the public embraced and rooted for. Judy Garland and Marilyn Monroe come to mind. We were hoping that they would find their way out of depression and drug abuse, find true love and settle down. Sadly, it didn’t happen.
Watching Cruise and Holmes implode was a probable inevitability. My advice to Katie is to be careful what you wish for. I hope that she gets some much needed privacy and has a good investment banker. As far as Mr. Cruise is concerned, I would suggest he shop for his next bride in the halls of Scientology. Make it easy on all of us.
It has all been interesting to watch … for about a day.
After that, I’m ready to trade TomKat in for a dog.
Rick Gualtieri - Feh! Now if Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie break up I’ll be kind of bummed. 🙂
Joan Cooper - Since you didn’t kick me off the blog with my last outburse, I continue.
I have been saying it forever to anyone with ears – Marriage needs an overhaul – Women are not longer chattel – the media the media is what we learn from.
Did I ever tell you I watch Telemundo? Their novellas (short stories) are fabulous in their intrigue and plotting. We have nothing like it. They are very visceral and at times quite violent (by our standards) but it is so so entertaining. The women are really women and beautiful and the men are really men and family and children are everything. They actually ‘feel’. Do we – really?
Jeffrey Davidson - A day to be interested? That’s a pretty long time!
I agree with you that his acting is good but he definitely presents a “holier than thou” persona, as well as a superiority complex. This does not take in to account his great expertise and knowledge, from his years of studying at the University of Tom Cruise, in medicine, psychology and other scientific fields, which gives him the background and expertise to tell others what and how to do things.
He is self absorbed and very honestly (would it be honest if I had not said “very honestly?”) I do not trust individuals that are so secretive with regards to their knowledge and abilities derived from studying Scientology and can not share how they “know what they know!”
Keep up the great writing!
Tammy - Hi Joan, I watched novellas a lifetime ago with my aunt. They are superior soap operas but make believe just the same. I hope that we can both agree that we live in a world where there ARE real men and real women and that we do feel … all be it, sometimes too much. I do agree with you that their plots and story lines beat ours all to heck. And as you know, women are still chattel in other countries. Sad and unforgiving, but true. As always, Joan, I’m delighted to hear from you! Thanks for reading.
Tammy - Hi Jeffrey, I think that when we don’t like a celebrity we are less likely to go see their work. It shouldn’t matter, but I think it does. Just ask Mel Gibson. Smugness is a trait I can do without in anyone. I don’t need to associate or appreciate anyone who thinks they are superior to me … even if they might be right. It’s all a bit weird and, like you, I’m over it. I am all about freedom of religion, but I’m not at all certain that Scientology is actually a religion. You’re right, the secrecy maintains a veil of doubt and questioning. Neither of which the “church” is anxious to clear up. No thank you! Love knowing you are on the other end of my little blog and so enjoy hearing from you. Thanks for posting!
Tammy - Hi Rick, ‘Feh’ is one of my most used words! I agree. But you gotta know that Brangelina is most likely on the list of relationships that won’t last. But I give them credit for taking it this far. When Tom Hanks and his wife call it quits … we’re all in trouble. Thanks for the read … and for the post!
Suerae Stein - I despised Tom Cruise once he let loose on post partum depression. I agree that he is a good actor, but he should have kept his holier-than-thou opinions to himself. I say “Yay!” to Katie Holmes for escaping that egotist. I do think people want celebrities to fail, maybe so that they can feel better about their own lives? But then we do tend to rally for people that we feel have been publicly wronged (Sandra Bullock, for example). It’s a strange phenomena to be sure! Another great read!
Mel Glenn - We live in a “celebrity culture” because we all want our 15 minutes and more. We wish to be them and say, that kind of misfortune
will never happen to me, but money corrupts and
absolute money corrupts absolutely.
You raise a very good question. We care, but we really shouldn’t. Good column.
Tammy - Hi Suerae, we are in agreement. I feel and fear that the arrogance that he displayed at that moment was what he lives on a daily basis. Not pretty. It must be hard being that perfect. We, as non-celebrities do indeed take sides. I remember the whole Sandra Bullock affair, horrible for her. She was given privacy to a larger degree because even the press felt badly for her. Happy she is doing well. Thanks for popping in and sharing, it’s always MY pleasure!
Tammy - Hi Mel, boy, you’ve hit the nail on the head with your sentiments about how money corrupts. Love the line: “money corrupts and absolute money corrupts absolutely”. I’ve yet to meet a person with money that this was not true. So sad because it’s these people that have an ability to make a difference of enormous merit. But few do. I’ll take my 15 minutes of fame, cash it in as a memory and continue on my journey. Always a pleasure having you here, Mel. Heading over to your place http://www.melglenn.com/ right now for a romp with the wordsmith! Thanks for the post.
Kellie - hum ya he needs to stick to scientology for bride finding 101!
Scott Morgan - You hit it right on the head with your question, ‘Why do we care?’ … The funny thing is, we don’t. Or I don’t. Or whatever. Great thoughts as usual, mon amie.
Charity Kountz - I agree! I have to admit that I never thought they’d last but a part of me always hoped they’d prove the naysayers wrong. But it was pretty evident not too long after Suri was born and their enormous wedding was over, that the conflicts started and the “rose petals were off the bloom”. I think Katie was just completely overwhelmed by this man she’d idolized and who everyone wanted – once she discovered the reality it was much too late. I feel a little sorry for her – she was so young and naive, seeing the total transformation from a young, innocent fresh faced girl to the woman she’s become has been interesting. I think she’s finally grown up and realized she and Suri both deserve better. Her exit was certainly a long time in the planning stage and executed flawlessly, as evidenced by the settlement. As for what she has on him, she has his daughter, isn’t that enough? With Suri physically in Kate’s custody, it wouldn’t be too difficult to put the screws to him publicly. Don’t mess with a Momma-bear and her cub!
As for Tom, I hope he continues to age gracefully (50?! Wow!) and that Hollywood doesn’t suddenly decide to toss him aside when his boyish looks fade (as they inevitably will) and his physical abilities to climb sheer cliffs and dangle from hovering helicopters via rope die away. I give him a max of 10 more years before either health or Hollywood cause him to disappear into obscurity. And I haven’t really seen anything along the lines of Top Gun or Jerry McGuire in regards to box-office slam dunks with long-term appeal from him in a number of years. The Mission Impossible franchise is starting to get pretty stale (in definite need of some new blood and story lines – the terrorist plot to overthrow the world with nuclear/diabolical weapons is getting old). Just my two cents of course 🙂 I’m such a gossip/celebrity hound. (Ashamed to admit I’m a weekly… ok ok… daily visitor to people.com)