If you're paying attention, as the fact that you even read those four words at all implies you are, then there's a good chance you recognize the premise of this article as being strikingly similar to something I did just a few weeks ago. Well, as similar as two diametrically opposed ideas can possibly be, anyway. I'm using big words to say I wrote damn near this same article in December, except back then, it was all about celebrities who got too much hate in 2014.
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Resolve to get off Kim Kardashian's dick this year!
This time around, I'm taking the opposite stance to discuss a few of the famous people of 2014 who, in my opinion, didn't get nearly as much scorn from the general public as they deserved. It's what we talk about on this week's Unpopular Opinion podcast ...
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Putting Jennifer Lawrence on a list like this is a tricky proposition. On the one hand, she seemed well on her way to finally eliciting that inevitable backlash that always accompanies becoming a bit too beloved in the public eye when she jokingly face-palmed Emma Watson on the red carpet that one time.
She's an asshole just like us!
It seems minor, because it totally was, but seemingly inconsequential dickery like that has a way of putting the nation's advance-douchebaggery-defense systems on high alert, making whatever happens next seem all the more heinous. Or, even worse, people start digging up incidents from the past and using them as evidence that maybe this person has been kind of a jerk all along.
In the case of Jennifer Lawrence, that research might have turned up the time she went on The Tonight Show and swooned over Jesse Eisenberg's "weird quirks," prompted by the fact that he'd just talked candidly about having obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Like the real kind that involves doing seemingly insane rituals over and over before accomplishing simple tasks, not the Internet kind that involves sometimes having to clean your own apartment like a normal person but posting about it on social media as if the desire to clean up after yourself amounts to a debilitating behavioral disorder.
There's nothing cute about full-blown OCD, but good luck telling that to Jennifer Lawrence, who just wished she had some wacky rituals of her own and gushed about how Jesse Eisenberg was the most interesting person ever on account of how he's got a legitimate mental condition that negatively impacts his life.
A little more digging might have turned up the time she called herself "dykey" because she was a tomboy who played a few sports in high school.
There's also her claims of being "fat" by Hollywood standards, which means ... what? Hollywood is finally giving leading roles to women regardless of how they look? Because Jennifer Lawrence is killing it in terms of landing high-profile acting roles. If my math is correct, that means Hollywood has finally thrown concerns about physical appearance to the wind in favor of recognizing talent and talent alone, even when it comes in a package as average-looking as this one.
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Right, she's not fat, and it really is sort of a problem that she claims otherwise. The situation that she's complaining about is one that absolutely exists for a lot of women in that profession and just in life in general. As impossible as it may seem, as the industry's self-appointed face of overweight women in movies, she actually makes Hollywood seem worse than it really is. Sure, what she's trying to address really is a problem, but not so much that looking like Jennifer Lawrence is considered letting yourself go. Jennifer Lawrence gets a lot of movie work, sometimes while wearing yoga pants.
Be proud of your unsightly curves, ladies!
Her intentions are probably all well and good, but I imagine the last thing a woman who's legitimately struggling with body image issues wants to hear is that Katniss Everdeen is the new dividing line between skinny and overweight.
So, all of that combined with the fury surrounding her assault on Emma Watson had Jennifer Lawrence on the fast track to a hate-filled second half of 2014, then that nude photo leak happened and she kind of became the voice of why that was a way bigger issue than people were making it out to be and hating her became a whole lot more difficult. That's completely fair. Sometimes the shitty behavior the world at large displays toward a celebrity cancels out the shitty things that celebrity has done, and this was definitely one of those instances.
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Fuck these motherfuckers for forever and a day, though. For what? Oh, you know, just being a band fronted by Bono, mostly. If specifics are a must, though, how about the decision to distribute their new album as the first high-profile computer virus to exclusively target Apple machines?
Was that something people should have been angry about? Plenty of them were, of course, and on the surface, it seems like a really crazy thing to get mad about. We're talking about one of the biggest bands in the world giving their album away for free. What's to complain about?
There's plenty, actually. For starters, this isn't how giving things away is supposed to work. Traditionally, the people who want the thing you're offering come get it from you in one way or another and the people who don't want it just go about their lives. In this scenario, it's just assumed that everyone wants a U2 album on their phone, tablet, and/or portable music player, without exception. When is that ever the case? It's a statistical improbability from a taste standpoint, if nothing else. Not everyone enjoys the music of U2; it's that simple.
This one could go either way.
Making them the test case for this radical advance in album distribution has another huge flaw in that U2, historically, has been a fairly political band. Even if it doesn't always come through in their music, Bono is almost as well known as a dude who pals around with world leaders as he is a dude in an Irish rock band. If you disagree with those politics in any way, having a U2 album surreptitiously planted on your mobile device is especially problematic. It would be like if every liberal in America woke up one morning with a Kid Rock album under their pillow. That's going to read more like a threat than anything.
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Also, way to be the face of Apple's public display of its ability to just swoop in and drop whatever the fuck it wants onto the smartphones of millions of people around the world without warning, guys! It's a pretty terrifying capability, really, but in a perfect world, it will never progress beyond relatively innocuous uses like this one. If it does, though, don't be surprised if history eventually views U2's Songs of Innocence as the official soundtrack of the moment Big Brother proved he'd won forever.