The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Celebrity Reactions to Being Cooped Up During the Wuhan Virus Outbreak

CORRECTS TITLE OF SHOW FROM “STAR TREK: NEW GENERATION” TO “STAR TREK: NEXT GENERATION” – FILE – In this Friday, Feb. 17, 2017 file photo, actor Patrick Stewart attends a press conference for the film “Logan” at the 2017 Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin, Germany. Stewart is boldly going where he’s been before – “Star Trek.” CBS All Access said Saturday, Aug. 4, 2018, Stewart has been tapped to headline a new “Star Trek” series, reprising his “Star Trek: Next Generation” character, Captain Jean-Luc Picard. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File)

Despite being a perfect example of what it is to be massively out of touch with everyone else due to wealth combining with ideological isolation, celebrities and artists do serve a purpose. They are, first and foremost, entertainers.

For the most part, we get pretty annoyed with celebrities who put social outreach and political change before their jobs. It’s a bad habit Hollywood has developed over the years, and it’s become so bad that even fellow celebrities have had to shame their colleagues into recognizing their place such as Ricky Gervais did at the Golden Globes.

During this Wuhan virus pandemic, celebrities have reacted in various ways. Some of them are doing the exact opposite of what they should be doing and are attempting to exhibit some kind of thought leadership, or what they think thought leadership is.

Others are doing exactly what they should be doing and are doing what it is their job to do; entertain.

I like to end on a good note so let’s get the bad examples out of the way first.

The first that comes to mind is the celebrity collab video that I can only assume was put together by Wonder Woman actress Gal Gadot. Gadot is far from being one of the worst celebrities in Hollywood and there’s not a lot she can do to make me dislike her, however, she got other celebrities to come together to sing one of the worst songs ever created, John Lennon’s “Imagine.”

Why these celebrities thought we needed, not just their collab video, but this song sung to us by them at this time is beyond me. It speaks more to the Hollywood elite’s sense of self-importance than it does their willingness to try to entertain us. If it were a different song that had no political message, then perhaps it would have been excusable, but again, “Imagine” is a message type of song that promotes communism and disses religion. It’s definitely not one we’d all like to relate to.

Next up is “blow up the White House” herself, Madonna, who decided to film herself talking about how the Coronavirus is the great equalizer while naked in a bathtub because why not?

Let’s break this down. Madonna, a very rich person, had a bath made for her containing a bath bomb and some rose petals. She had to have practiced the position and water levels necessary to make sure that she showed enough without showing anything. Then proceeded to have someone film her while she talked about how we’re all equals. I’m not even going to begin speculating whether or not the piano music in the background was playing while she was filming or if she had someone edit that in later.

Madonna is known for being ridiculous and out of touch but this will probably go down as one of the most stupid things she’s done to get attention.

Speaking of stupid things. Here’s High School Musical star Vanessa Hudgens being insensitive about people dying due to the Wuhan virus.

To her credit, she did apologize after the high wore off from whatever she was clearly on.

While there was plenty of stupid, there was also plenty of good being done. Many celebrities urged people to stay in their homes, but the best ones were the self-aware celebrities who understood that it wasn’t about them, namely Ryan Reynolds who actually made it clear that pretty much everyone from first responders to imaginary friends are more important than celebrities at times like these.

But many didn’t resort to messaging and did what it’s their job to do. Among those is the man who IS Broadway, Andrew Lloyd Webber. Webber filmed himself playing his songs on piano for us while we wait out this pandemic. Needless to say, it’s wonderful to hear.

What’s also great is that Webber actually gave us a little background and stories on the songs after he played them.

He and Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda also engaged in a Broadway playoff.

My personal favorite is Star Trek’s Sir Patrick Stewart who has dedicated himself to reading us Shakespeare in his signature and highly recognizable voice until this entire thing has passed.

 

Brandon Morse
Senior Editor. Culture critic, and video creator. Good at bad photoshops.
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