The 5 Saddest Attempts By Celebrities To Hang On To Fame

Fame is kind of like a Jagerbomb, in that it's really only fun while you're doing it, and afterward there are so very, very many regrets. While some celebrities are happy to do the walk of shame all the way back to obscurity after their 15 minutes are up, others will do anything for one more shot. Anything. Even stuff like ...

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5
Farrah Abraham Wrote A Novel To Accompany Her "Leaked" Sex Tape

Farrah Abraham had a lucrative career as a pregnant teen, but it only lasted as long as she was both pregnant and a teen. When the MTV gravy train ran dry, she did everything you'd expect from a listless 20-something whose livelihood rested on the atrocity of American sex education. She released an album called My Teenage Dream Ended, then an autobiography of the same name, then she hit the washed-up celebrity reality TV circuit. Now, the next logical step here is usually Celebrity Squares, but Farrah opted for something a bit less embarrassing: pornography. But not even in a respectable, forthright way -- no, it just so happened that her studio-production sex tape with famous porn star James Deen "leaked" online.

And then leaked a sequel.Vivid EntertainmentAnd then "leaked" a sequel.

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To prove that she was totally shocked and humiliated by the whole incident, she wrote an erotic companion novel. Kind of like the Star Wars expanded universe, but with slightly more dongs and slightly worse writing. We can't reprint, well, any sentence from the book without committing a crime against literature, but it's basically a blow by blow account of her encounter with Deen, related as clinically and passionlessly as an overworked gynecologist would. But in the book they have different names, so it's totally fiction, you guys. Just a nice little story with no relation to that thing she never intended anyone to see, swearsies.

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4
Sisqo Released An "Updated" Version Of "Thong Song" For 2017

Sisqo was 1999 incarnate. He's what would happen if you mixed Carson Daly's hair gel and Britney Spears's body glitter together in Missy Elliott's trash bag. He had exactly one smash hit -- "Thong Song" -- and for a certain demographic, the tune still brings a single margarita-salty tear to the eye. Sisqo hung his whole career on that song, because the only other career he tried was acting, and we've all seen Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Season 6, Episode 1. We know how that turned out.

We couldn’t find video, but he gets out-acted by the talking cat puppet.Viacom ProductionsWe couldn’t find video, but he gets out-acted by the talking cat puppet.

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So when it came time for a comeback, Sisqo had one move: remake "Thong Song" for a new audience. And by "remake," we mean do the exact same thing, but now as a 40-year-old man in a roller rink over what sounds like a child playing a toy xylophone.

It's less of a dance sensation and more of a To Catch A Predator sting. He's wanted to remake the song for years, he says, to get all those people whom he insists have been begging him to do so off his back. Curiously, he couldn't find the right talent, possibly because the entire music world banded together to never let this happen. Then a group of Norwegian DJs agreed to break that embargo. Thanks, Norway. You just couldn't be cool, could you?

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3
After Baseball, Babe Ruth Did A Vaudeville "Show"

Babe Ruth was legendary at almost everything he did. Almost. He had a fairly disastrous game in the 1926 World Series that brought his career to a halt, but Ruth didn't dwell on that low point for long. Instead, he embarked on a three-month tour on the Vaudeville circuit. Wow, who could have known that the Great Bambino was as talented a showman as he was an athlete?

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Nobody. Because he wasn't.

Ruth's "shows" basically consisted of talking about baseball and signing autographs for kids, meaning those kids were technically performers, meaning he was technically in serious violation of child labor laws. He was arrested at a show in San Diego after failing to show work permits that allowed those kids to go onstage, though he was immediately released on bail and acquitted a few weeks later. Athlete scandals in the '20s sound downright quaint.

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2
Morton Downey Jr. Pretended To Be Attacked By Nazis

If you've ever been thankful for the high-quality programming of Howard Stern and Jerry Springer, send a card to Morton Downey Jr. (No relation to Robert.) Downey is often credited as one of the great pioneers of "loudmouth" television, but as viewers grew bored with his "zip it" catchphrase and advertisers grew wary of hawking their products via dry-humping strippers, his ratings began to plummet.

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Desperate to save his career, Morton devised a plan: He claimed to be attacked by Nazis, who apparently hated his show because it was so real, man. To this end, he came running out of a San Francisco airport with a half-shaved head and a swastika painted on his face, screaming about a savage Nazi restroom attack. (Which, yes, is available if your punk band needs a name.) Curiously, airport police never found any perpetrators, but they did find that Morton's swastika was backwards. You know, as if somebody had painted it on themselves. Say, in a bathroom mirror.

Tragically, the publicity stunt wasn't enough to save his show, and Downey was never able to reclaim the spotlight. Nazis, on the other hand, seem to be doing quite well these days.

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1
Michael Phelps "Raced The Shark"

Michael Phelps has won a record 28 medals over his Olympic career. But recall that back in 2009, right after he first gained fame, sponsors dropped him en masse when we was caught on film hitting a bong like an Arizona State undergrad. Like that, Phelps' career path was on a downturn. Until that fateful day when he decided to race a shark ...

Sort of. Kind of. But not really. <i>At all</i>.Discovery ChannelSort of. Kind of. But not really. At all.

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Phelps had agreed to take part in Discovery Channel's annual Shark Week festivities by starring in a production called Phelps vs. Shark: Great Gold vs. Great White. Hyped as a contest between man and beast off the coast of South Africa, Phelps would test his mettle in a 100-meter race against an apex predator. But it wasn't a side by side, breaststroke-for-your-life situation, like many had hoped, nor did the producers talk him into going ahead and jumping over the shark with a motorcycle. Instead, he faced off against a CGI replica of an outsized Carcharodon carcharias.

Making it <A TARGET=_blank HREF=http://www.cracked.com/quick-fixes/4-signs-that-educational-tv-totally-dead/><i>almost</i> the least-real thing</A> ever to run during Shark Week.Discovery ChannelMaking it almost the least-real thing ever to run during Shark Week.

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The internet, as it is wont to do, exploded in brief but furious indignation that they were denied a front-row seat to the horrible death of a master Olympian. But when all was said and done, Phelps did set yet another record. The show garnered more viewers than any other Shark Week production in history. Then he mostly did appearances on daytime talk shows to promote Colgate's "Every Drop Counts" environmental campaign. Which may have something to do with spilled bong water? We'll have to check.

Jordan Breeding also writes for Paste Magazine, the Twitter, himself, and wishes he had some fame to desperately cling to.

Sharks are at their best in blimp form and steered by humans, in case you had an incredible itch for one of your own.

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For more check out The 7 Most WTF Post-Fame Celebrity Careers and 18 WTF Post-Fame Lives of Former Celebrities.

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