So the big deal in the celebrity world right now is Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds getting hitched. Every time somebody in Hollywood gets married it becomes front page news. But why? Sure, we like Ryan and Blake. I suppose it's exciting for them that they've made this decision to wed. I'm sure all their friends and family are ecstatic for the impending nuptials. Yet, indulge me for a minute as I replace that bag of rice with a bucket of ice water, and assume the role of devil's advocate by taking a critical look at this situation as it pertains to Ryan and Blake, as well as celebs in general. Am I the only one who remembers that Ryan was married to Scarlett Johansson only a few months ago? Isn't it a bit peculiar to break up with your wife in 2011, then marry your rebound the following year? Are we really supposed to look at this as the makings of a lifelong partnership? Do they see it that way? And why should anyone look at celebrity pairings as anything more than temporary insanity?
Okay, so you argue that maybe 3rd times the charm (Ryan was also engaged to Alanis Morrisette back in 2006. Didn't even make it to the altar that time). Let's not forget about the dismal prospect of marriage longevity in most of the western world. You basically got a 50/50 chance of making it with whom ever you decide to take the vow with. There's a divorce happening every few seconds in the US. Those are pretty sad figures. Yet they're positively rosey compared to the celebrity marriage track record. No one stays married in Hollywood for long - especially if they're in the upper echelons of stardom. There's probably a bunch of reasons for that. They got lots of temptations, those celebs. Tough to be with just one person when you got the whole rest of the world just itching to get into your pants. There's also the distance issues. You might be spending all your time making movies or TV shows on the other side of the world, spending months apart from your mate. You're probably going to get lonely in that time, maybe get a wandering eye. That's all it takes. Soon enough, splitsville. Then, of course, there's the pressure of maintaining your new dual public persona. Once that glow fades, the tabloid press starts to smell the blood in the water. And the only thing that makes them more giddy than stars getting hitched, is stars getting unhitched.
Unless you're a completely clueless idiot, totally outside of all reality, these facts have to got to occur to celebs like Ryan and Blake, or any of the other famous folks looking to take the plunge nowadays. I don't think Ryan and Blake are clueless idiots, so what are they thinking? I suppose if you're rich and famous, you've got the means to bring in a legal team to write up the infamous prenup. A wise choice, particularly for folks with so much to lose. Ensuring that your "loved one" can't keep any of your shit is not exactly the pathway to a happy, long-lasting marriage though. I can't think of anything more sabotaging to the spirit of matrimony than having the law offices of Snodgrass, Pinkus and Melvin negotiate how your albums will be divided, should things go south in the marriage.
Do I really have to go through the list of horrible marriage collapses in the last 10 years or so? Should we talk about trainwrecks like Brad and Jen? Luckily he had Angelina waiting in the wings. Or how about Tiger Woods? Dude lost half his money, most of his endorsements and much of his game. He'll never be the same after that fiasco. And even if they do part on good terms, it can't be much fun to be famous and always running into your ex at parties or premieres or whatever. I freak when an ex updates her relationship status on Facebook. Imagine how shitty it must be when your ex's new relationship becomes breaking news.
Some famous folks actually have the presence of mind to look before they leap. Take everyone's favorite Hollywood bachelor, George Clooney. Now there's a guy who understands his situation. Dude got married when he was younger, it didn't work out and they split. Yet, George understood something. He puts out a relatively humble vibe, but he's known for awhile that he can get pretty much any woman he wants. So why go through all that marriage bullshit again? When he finds a hottie he wants to get with on a regular basis, the two of them enjoy the hell out of each other for awhile, and when the relationship has run its course, they move on. No regrets, no bruised feelings, no loss of money or possessions or public standing. You get the best of what that relationship was, without any of the nasty after taste. Guy's a genius.
As a fan of both Ryan and Blake, I wish them only the best in their lives. That being said, I hold little hope for this union, or any union that takes place amidst the glitz and glamor of Hollywood. That might sound mean or unduly pessimistic, and maybe it is. But the statistics don't lie. Frankly, I've never understood why celebs keep coming back to the altar. It reminds me of an old joke, equating repeat marriages to leaving the expired milk in the fridge and expecting it to magically become edible again each time you come back for a glass. If the idea is that you can get marriage right if you keep trying, I'm afraid you're in for disappointment. Marriage is not something you get right. It either is or it isn't. And even if it is right, and you do get it to go smoothly, things can very bumpy very quickly. That's the case with any normal relationship. Imagine how much more precarious things become when the have millions of dollars at stake and vast numbers of people watching your every move.
No, for most celebs, I think the game of celebrity marriage is much like the game of Thermonuclear War - the only winning move is...not to play.