Monday 23 October 2017

Sentimentality rules as old-school stars die

Public grieving over dead celebs is a symptom of our social media-driven age of artificial intimacy

FANS’ FAREWELLS: Tributes outside George Michael’s house in Highgate, North London, following the singer’s death on Christmas Day. Photo: PA
FANS’ FAREWELLS: Tributes outside George Michael’s house in Highgate, North London, following the singer’s death on Christmas Day. Photo: PA

Sarah Caden

On Christmas Day, soon after the death of George Michael was announced, Sarah Michelle Gellar, the actress best known for her starring role in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, tweeted her distress.

"Do you really want to hurt me?" she wrote. "I guess you do 2016 #ripboygeorge I was one of your biggest fans." It took no more than one minute for some other tweeter to tell Gellar that she had the wrong 1980s pop star. Gellar apologised, explained that she had misheard and asserted that her "intentions were good".

"Just as sad when you get the correct information," she added, "#ripGeorgeMichael thank you to everyone who corrected me - it's still so sad."

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