Anna Nicole Smith Dies (To Spite Rosie)
THE FAMOUS BIMBO SEALS HER PLACE IN POPULAR CULTURE
On Thursday morning’s episode of The View, professional complainer (that’s a compliment) Rosie O’Donnell openly expressed her wish for Anna Nicole Smith to disappear from TV for good (click here for the video clip). Little did she know Ms. Smith would crush those dreams, just three short hours later, when she unexpectedly died at a Hollywood, Florida casino. Could Donald Trump have put Anna Nicole up to it?
In a turn of events that (frankly) should not surprise anybody, the 39-year old Smith decided to join her son and octogenarian billionaire husband in the afterlife. While the cause of death has yet to be determined, one can’t help think she may have followed Marilyn Monroe’s tragic career path a little too closely. Of course we all know Marilyn had the one thing Anna Nicole lacked: Talent. That didn’t keep her from getting famous.
Anna’s long strange trip in the national spotlight began in the early 90s when she (ahem) burst forth on the pages of Playboy magazine. From that initial launch, she weaved her way into tabloids, most notably in 1994 when she married an 89-year old billionaire named J. Howard Marshall.
Fourteen months later, Marshall died and Anna claimed half of his $1.6 billion estate. When her husband’s will was finally revealed, it was discovered Ms. Smith was left out of it completely. She filed a lawsuit against his children, triggering a legal saga that took her case all the way to the US Supreme Court, which found in her favor. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is expected to rule on her claim (based on some sort of oral agreement) later this year.
I swear, on a stack of Anna Nicole Playboys, I never watched a single episode of The Anna Nicole Show. However, I did enjoy the various parodies of her ‘reality’ show that popped-up on television comedies around the same time. These take-offs would typically depict Anna as very fat, slurring her words, while she drank a large Cosmo or ate a gallon of ice cream. I doubt her show was half as entertaining–it didn’t matter. She had become a well-established presence in popular culture, ripe for joke making, by simply existing in front of the cameras.
What kept her in the headlines since last September was the tragic overdose of her 20-year old son, Daniel. His death came just three days after the birth of her daughter, Dannielynn Hope Marshall Stern. Even stranger is the court battle that erupted following her birth. Smith’s longtime personal attorney, Howard K. Stern, and ex-boyfriend, Larry Birkhead, both claim to be little Dannielynn’s father. A court recently ordered a DNA test to determine paternity, although it has yet to be administered. (Her death should speed that process along.) Maybe they can get Maury Povich to announce the results? “Howard K. Stern, you are…NOT the father!”
Any tribute to Anna Nicole Smith would be sorely lacking if it didn’t mention TrimSpa, the ‘wonder drug’ that helped her lose a reported 69 pounds. After Smith’s TV show ended, no one knew how she planned to return to the spotlight, but they knew she would. Out of nowhere, commercials began airing with a slender Anna asking,”Like my body?…TrimSpa, bay-bee.” While her apparent weight-loss was impressive, I never thought it was due to TrimSpa. No TV diet drug helps you lose that much weight. A toxicology report may hold the truth behind her slim appearance–I’ll bet it was some kind of opiate.
Rosie O’Donnell may eventually get her wish, but not until we have publicly sifted through the mess Anna Nicole Smith behind. Damn you, Trump!
Don’t forget to set your TiVo’s…