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2009 Juice*ys: A look back at Gaga, Glambert and more

2009 was one of the craziest celebrity years of ALL TIME. Here's The Juice*'s third annual peek in the rearview mirror at 12 months in which the world met Glambert and Gaga, lost Jacko and Swayze, and we all learned the meaning of Twitter. — Compiled by Joshua Gillin jgillin@tampabay.com

MISS ANTI-MANNERS AWARD

Kanye West

Usually when Kanye West blabs about his opinions, IT'S IN ALL CAPS ON HIS BLOG, so no one really notices. Unfortunately, his greatest outburst came when Taylor Swift won Best Female Video for You Belong With Me at the MTV Video Music Awards. If ever we wondered what the greatest video of all time was, Kanye let us know. And we didn't even know Beyonce's Single Ladies was all that. At least Kanye acted contrite — he even actually called Swift after an appearance on The View. Don't let it be said he doesn't call a woman back, ladies!

JUICE*Y PERSON OF THE YEAR

Lady Gaga

Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta is the modern embodiment of the American dream. If at first you don't succeed at being famous, then make up a persona, dress in outrageous outfits, use your musical talents (she almost attended Juilliard) to create mindless but mildly entertaining dance tracks even if you can't sing that well, and watch the cash roll in. Yes, that's actually Lady Gaga playing the piano, although she hocks a leg up on the keyboard to make it "edgy." Yes, she claims she dresses this way all the time, although if you've seen paparazzi photos of her with friends, she dresses in nothing like her showstopping getups. Yes, she was signed to Def Jam at age 19 after being heard by L.A. Reid, but she claims to have never been approached by the man. Yes, she claims to be completely original, although her performances have been carefully crafted from years as a stripper and in a burlesque revue, and her very name is taken from Queen's Radio Ga Ga. Yes, she's apparently had some plastic surgery, but still sports a very uncommercial bone structure and a honkin' schnoz. She is the amalgamation of influences that is today's pop cultural landscape: a mashup of club hits, questionable fashion sense (really, what was up with that Kermit the Frog cape?), crass commercialism, classical ability and marketable talent. And her acceptance of — nay, desire for — this makes her our Juice*y Person of the Year.

THANK GOODNESS THAT'S OVER WITH AWARD

Jon and Kate Gosselin

We know we banned this pair from our pages, so we'll make it brief. All we can say about the show is, without the eight kids, it's about a doughy, unemployed slob with bad fashion sense and his spiky haired, OCD champion nagfest wife. Who wants to watch that?

WE ALL NEED COUNSELING AWARD

Chris Brown and Rihanna

When news broke that Chris Brown had beaten up his girlfriend Rihanna in February, the pair instantly went from power couple of R&B to the new Ike and Tina Turner. But even the most jaded gossip hounds (read: us) were appalled at the brutality of the incident. The match to this powderkeg: Rihanna accusing her boyfriend of getting text messages from another woman. Details of how Brown bashed Rihanna's head into a car window, choked her and bit her hand and fingers as she tried to fight him off turned him into a monster in the eyes of the media. But then strange things began to happen — or rather, not happen. Far from being abandoned by his fans, many, including a surprising number of women, were saying it was Rihanna's fault for daring to question her man. Instead of coming out immediately with an anti-abuse message, Rihanna kept quiet, and even asked a judge to be lenient on him. Brown went on tour after being sentenced to probation and community service, giving anyone and everyone a disjointed message that yes, he understands hitting women is wrong, but you have to realize he ain't like that. This is an attack none of us is liable to recover from soon.

HOW TO HANDLE A WOMANIZING SCANDAL AWARD

David Letterman

When word came that a man was busted for trying to extort David Letterman for having an affair with a female staffer, the Late Night host did something we expect of all celebrities, but rarely get: He came clean and said it was true. He devoted time on his show to explain that someone had threatened to destroy Dave's life in order to get $2 million from him. Well, his personal life may have its problems, but you'll note that the Letterman stories have stopped. It's simply not a good story when the wrongdoer admits doing wrong, but it points out it's really no one's business but his and his family's.

HOW NOT TO HANDLE A WOMANIZING SCANDAL AWARD

Tiger Woods

The Juice* tried to resist this one as long as it could, since every news outlet from here to Jupiter took it upon itself to single-handedly destroy the poster boy for making golf cool. But Tiger Woods made two mistakes here: not keeping his 9-iron in his pants and letting news of his profligate extramarital exploits break on a holiday weekend. While he initially tried to spin his SUV crash outside his home as an unfortunate accident, a gossip-starved media descended on his suburban Orlando home like a horde of locusts, finding every trashy mistress from here to Pebble Beach and back again, and promptly profiling them, quoting them and blogging about every single turn of phrase. All Tiger could muster was a weakly worded message on his Web site and a shroud of silence to rival the Communist Bloc. Meanwhile, the effigies burn, the sponsors drop and the total of women from every port continue to mount.

BIGGEST HYPOCRITE AWARD

Carrie Prejean

When the former Miss California came in as runner-up for Miss USA, her troubles were just beginning. Claiming to be an all-American girl, she cried out that she lost because she expressed her opposition to gay marriage. She was stripped of her title in June because of "contract violations," officially that she hadn't been showing up for events. When she countersued, it was revealed that she'd posed for topless photos and had a sex tape, two things that are frowned upon in the pageant world (even if the sex tape starred just herself). She started saying it was because she was a conservative woman and somehow brought politics into the mix. Calling the sex tape the biggest mistake of her life, she touted a memoir titled Still Standing, despite the fact that EIGHT MORE solo sex tapes appeared. She played the conservative card again, threatening to walk out on Larry King after he dared ask about her videotaping habits. Which leads us to ask: Is the media really attacking you if you actually did the things they are saying about you?

MOST OVERBLOWN MUSIC PERFORMANCE

Adam Lambert

You mean Adam Lambert is gay, and gay people kiss people of their own gender? Shocking. But not as shocking as the backlash against this America Idol product, who took it upon himself to spice up the closing performance of the American Music Awards last month. So what if he kissed a band member and introduced a dancer's face to his crotch? It was after 11 p.m. on an awards show — most people had gone to bed by then.

MOST LIKELY TO BE ON 'CELEBRITY REHAB' AWARD

Brian Bonsall

We hadn't seen hide nor hair of the erstwhile Andy Keaton, until he was charged last week with second-degree assault for hitting a friend in the face with a bar stool in Boulder, Colo. It seems the onetime contemporary of Michael J. Fox has fallen on hard times, allegedly violating probation from a 2-year-old charge of beating his girlfriend and abusing all manner of controlled substances. In addition, at some point between leaving Family Ties and becoming so broke he couldn't afford a $7,500 bond, Bonsall apparently went to a tattoo parlor and asked for a giant illustration of failure on his throat. Dr. Drew Pinsky will be waiting for you in two to six years, Bri.

WOMAN'S BEST FRIEND AWARD

Jessica Simpson's dog

Remember how Jessica's dog Daisy was snatched by a coyote from their Texas home? We're not going to rag on that, because that's kinda sad. Nick Lachey gave her that maltipoo! But like anyone who'd ever seen Newlyweds, we could tell you from jump that the poor dog was no more. So why were we being inundated with Twitter messages, Facebook updates and CNN breaking news alerts about finding that mutt? You'd think people on a Texas ranch would be more realistic about such things. Guess what? They didn't find that poor dog. We'd like to think it was simply escaping the Simpson homestead.

Rest in tweets

Twitter is supposed to be the Hot. New. Thing., but the microblogging service has been around for a couple of years. Maybe that's why so many celebrities have adopted it — because they're so much cooler than us (follow us @tbtjuice, btw). In 2009, the year of the celebrity death, Twitter gave us all insight into how famous people deal with another star's passing. Some sentiments were sweet, some were hilarious, some were downright trite and depressing. A selection:

Michael Jackson

• The news coverage of Michael Jackson's death is like the Buckwheat death skit on snl in the 80's…so sad. — Sasha Grey, @SashaGrey

• Did you hear Michael Jackson's kids are free? That's not nice. I'm sorry. Ugh, I feel bad for saying that. LOOK A BLUE CAR! — Sarah Silverman, @SarahKSilverman

Patrick Swayze

• Patrick you are loved by so many and your light will forever shine in all of our lives. In the words of Sam to Molly. "It's amazing Molly. The love inside, you take it with you." I will miss you. — Demi Moore, @mrskutcher

DJ AM

• Nononononono what????? i can't believe this.. i'm in shock. why? why? r.i.p. Adam — Lindsay Lohan, @sevennyny6126, now at @lindsaylohan

Farrah Fawcett

• What a wonderful, beautiful woman inside & out. Kind as can be, an amazing fighter who always kept hope in her heart. We can all learn a lot from her tremendous will to keep on fighting. God Bless You Farrah & may she finally rest in peace. — Paula Abdul, @PaulaAbdul

• R.I.P. Farrah Fawcett. You will be missed. And if you see Mr. Spelling in your new journey, tell him I miss him. — Alyssa Milano, @Alyssa_Milano

David Carradine

• R.I.P. David Carradine. You were a true hero to so many of us children of the 70s. We'll miss you, Kwai Chang Caine. — Rainn Wilson, @rainnwilson

Billy Mays

• My dad didn't wake up this morning.. I'm sure you'll all hear about it. It hasn't yet hit me but it's about to. — Billy Mays III, @YoungBillyMays

2009 Juice*ys: A look back at Gaga, Glambert and more 12/18/09 [Last modified: Friday, December 18, 2009 8:46am]

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