Brangelina is over and Americans has been trying to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives ever since the news broke.

After their announcement I wrote a piece on why it matters in pop culture that this Hollywood power couple and the parents of six children are divorcing. I basically posited that in America culture and politics intersect to create the greatest influence on the moral direction of our nation.

At that point there was no indication that things would get ugly. Pitt and Jolie are those rare mega-celebrities who always seem like the adults in the room. They’re actively engaged with charity work, don’t complain too often about the trappings of a luxuriant celebrity-lifestyle and seem to put their money where their mouths are a lot of the time.

Now what once seemed sure to be an amicable split has turned very ugly, very quickly and politics and celebrity culture are colliding in real time, as People magazine reports that Jolie has hired the real life “Olivia Pope” for her divorce team.

Judy Smith is the owner of Smith & Company, a crisis management firm that has handled some of the highest profile “celebrity” cases in recent memory, including Paula Deen, Michael Vick and Monica Lewinsky. Smith is the inspiration for the character of high-powered D.C. fixer “Olivia Pope” on the hit tv show Scandal, and is a co-producer on the show.

The Pitt-Jolie divorce has “crisis management tactics” written all over it. Recently an anonymous complaint was called in to Child Protection Services regarding an alleged confrontation between Pitt and 15 year-old son, Maddox. Nothing came of the allegations. It seemed more like a heated family argument than an abusive situation, but the incident proves Jolie is taking the gloves off.

 

Pop culture and Hollywood culture are intimately intertwined whether we like it or not and it behooves us all to remember that.

Hopefully Jolie and Pitt can come to some sort of peaceful agreement soon, for the sake of their children.