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Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 03/19/2007

Comment Box: Is Britney Oops Prone?

By Liz Kelly

A bald Britney. (AFP/Getty Images)
Photo Gallery: Britney's Changing Look

Not to be witchy or judgmental, but when Britney looks for a man what exactly are the qualities she's aiming for? I mean from K-Fed to an alcoholic frontman of a little-known band. Yes, prime boyfriend material there. Okay that was witchy and judgmental, but come ON! -- Washington, D.C.

Witchy and judgmental you are not, although maybe a touch on the "hypercritical" side. But here in Celebritology you and your armchair assessments of Britney (and Lindsay and Paris and Nicole) are welcome. Part of our mandate as Celebritologists is to try to make some kind of sense out of the life choices made by these people. So, when Britney Spears goes from pop goddess to tabloid poster child in the same amount of time it takes Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera to transcend teen idol status to become true stars, we are well-advised to deconstruct exactly how she managed to muff things up so badly so quickly.

Part of the problem is her inability to pre-suppose the consequences of impetuous actions like shaving her head, bludgeoning an SUV with an umbrella or reportedly romping in the bushes with another rehab patient. My guess is that while Britney's body matured at warp speed, her decision-making skills and sense of self are still back in Mickey Mouse Club land. Fortunately, Britney is well-placed right now to take advantage of some tough life lessons. She's in rehab, separated from her children, facing a divorce and probably realizing right about now what an absolute fool she's made of herself over the past few months.

But change doesn't happen overnight and we may not have seen the last of Britney's bad choices. Is rumored new boyfriend Jason Filyaw another? Too soon to tell, but I still stand by the 12-step plan Celebritology crafted for Spears back in December.

You mentioned Ricky Gervais? I think I have a non-gay crush on the man. I love him! I know almost no one who has seen "Extras." I'm assuming you have. Please give it some props. -- The Big Apple

You don't have to twist my arm to squeeze out heaps of compliments for Ricky Gervais. And though I have much love for Steve Carrell and Rainn Wilson, I back Gervais's original British version of "The Office" as the superior series (though French and German versions also exist). Which makes sense since the concept was Gervais's brainchild. Both seasons of the original BBC production are available on DVD. But don't let your Gervais worship stop there -- you can also catch him on the hilariously uncomfortable (think Larry David on speed) HBO series "Extras" in which Gervais plays a lovably despicable barely-working actor and in his wildly popular weekly podcast, "The Ricky Gervais Show." And, of course, any self-respecting Gervais fan needs to be well-versed in the short-lived phenomenon that was Seona Dancing.

So I guess I have a crush on him, too.

Who do you think would win in a naval battle: Captain Kangaroo or Captain 20? -- Washington, D.C.

I love this question. Seriously, it makes my day and considering the outcome provides an instructive lesson in how our brain stores memories. See, because when I start to picture Captain Kangaroo and Captain 20 facing each other, "Master & Commander" style, across a roiling ocean my brain instantly opens the waters into a vortex-like drain that dumps both ships into the "Land of the Lost" where both Kangaroo and 20 are imprisoned by Sleestaks.

Still, to give your question the consideration and answer it deserves, I would have to declare Bob Keeshan (aka Captain Kangaroo) the winner because of his experience as a Marine in World War II. Sorry Captain 20.

Have questions? Send them to or submit them to Thursday's Celebritology Live discussion.

By Liz Kelly  | March 19, 2007; 10:43 AM ET
Categories:  Comment Box  
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Captain 20 versus Captain Kangaroo in a naval battle is not a fair fight, since Captain 20 is not a naval captain. Captain 20 is captain of a space ship and a Mr. Spock knock-off. Although Captain Kangaroo was never seen commanding a vessel, or anywhere near the ocean, his uniform would indicate that his title is a naval title. (Although it could be a self-appointed honorific, like those famous "Colonels," Sanders and Tom Parker.)

Perhaps the poster meant a battle between Captain Kangaroo and Channel 45's Captain Chesapeake, who actually piloted a tug boat. That could be an evenly matched naval battle.

Posted by: Live Long and Win Many Prizes | March 19, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Britney is no more Ooops prone in her choice of men than most women in the day-to-day. They stay with guys who beat them, abuse them, cheat on them but are hot, or "bad boyz" or whatever; while ignoring more staid, stable guys who don' blow all their money on the here and now bling.

Posted by: Stick | March 19, 2007 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Amen on Ricky Gervais! I struggle with which version of the office I like better. I think the American version is funnier overall but David Brent is funnier than Michael Scott, if that makes sense.

The Big Apple - I LOVE Extras and can talk about it forever. How about the episode with Ian McKellen? "I'm not really a wizard."

Posted by: KG | March 19, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Ricky Gervais was also featured in "For Your Consideration". He was a poker-faced scream in that one, too

Posted by: Fairfax | March 19, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Captain Kangaroo was a riverboat or tugboat captain (I forget which). He was called "Kangaroo" because of the big pockets on his coat.

Posted by: Fairfax | March 19, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Britney is also the breadwinner in the family. When the kid becomes the moneymaker in the family you get a Dana Plato, & the rest of the kid cast of Different Strokes not to mention far too numerous other child stars.

If little baby stops working we lose the mansion & the yacht so we gotta keep him out there regardless of his/her mental state.

Those parents should be looking to the Ron Howards of the industry instead of looking @ the $$$.

Posted by: Bored @ work | March 19, 2007 12:03 PM | Report abuse

She's in rehab, separated from her children, facing a divorce and probably realizing right about now what an absolute fool she's made of herself over the past few months"

Sorry Liz,

Right now, Britney is thinking about getting laid and getting back with K-Fed and the kids, and maybe buying a decent wig from Wal-Mart.

Rehab or not, self-reflection is encouraged by those around Britney.

Posted by: Lisa | March 19, 2007 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I concur the BBC version of the Office is better, but the NBC version is definitely improving.

Seona Dancing. Wow -- Just, Wow....

Posted by: Anonymous | March 19, 2007 12:18 PM | Report abuse

"(Although it could be a self-appointed honorific, like those famous "Colonels," Sanders and Tom Parker.)"

Colonel Sanders was a real Kentucky Colonel. Unfortunately, that title has no military significance. It just means you were honored by the state of Kentucky.

Posted by: dgc | March 19, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Oh I miss the Ricky Gervais Show podcasts. They are phenomenal.

Posted by: Boutros | March 19, 2007 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Old fossils like myself know that WTTG's Captain Tugg would have beaten out both Captains Kangaroo and 20. I presume both Tugg and his associate Fantail the Parrot have sailed off to their reward.

Posted by: Alexandria, VA Guy | March 19, 2007 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Fairfax's post made me L-O-L.
Muchas gracias!

Posted by: methinks | March 19, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Huh-Huh! You said muff in reference to Britney Spears! Huh-Huh!!

Posted by: Butthead | March 19, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

For those of us 30- and 40- somethings who grew up with Captain 20:

And his alter ego - Count Gore Vidal!

Warning - inane background music embedded in web page:

Posted by: Chasmosaur | March 19, 2007 1:02 PM | Report abuse

My oops - Count Gore de Vol.

Please don't sue me, famous author-man...

Posted by: Chasmosaur | March 19, 2007 1:04 PM | Report abuse

The first poster is correct--Captain Chesapeake is the more likely foe for the so-called Captain Kangaroo. And he would kick that non-seafaring marsupial wannabe's butt all up and down the eastern seaboard. Consider, if you will, their relative qualifications: Captain Chesapeake was an actual mariner. He was once lost at sea and found his way to his beloved tugboat from which he broadcast to us every day after school. There were REAL ship bells on the half hour announcing our favorite shows (Tom and Jerry, Gilligan's Island, The Munsters, etc.). We were his crew members. He had a real live sea monster for a sidekick!

This landlubber Kangaroo guy? He played Clarabelle for crying out loud! His friends were sock puppets and a moose and, who could forget...Slim Freakin' Goodbody. Nice guy this Kangaroo clown, but...come on. He was a guy dressed as Miss Doubtfire in drag as a dude. That's right, double-dragged out. I said it. He dressed like an usher. A valet. In a toupee.

Captain Chesapeake was Bogey in The African Queen. Captain Kangaroo? Try Yeoman Purser Burl "Gopher" Smith.

Posted by: jrh | March 19, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

My brain is smarter than I am.

Posted by: Podcasts | March 19, 2007 1:09 PM | Report abuse

capt. kangaroo was a good dude, one of the few, the proud, the marines. he served in ww2 with lee marvin (or one of those old tough guy actors that's dead now) for crying out loud. i think he was on iwo jima. probably had the idea to plant the flag.

Posted by: methinks | March 19, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

JRH -- You make a forceful point. Thanks for weighing in.

Posted by: Liz | March 19, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Slim. Goodbody.

You bastard.

Posted by: 23112 | March 19, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Methinks, check on that one. Its an urban legend.

Posted by: James Buchanan | March 19, 2007 1:34 PM | Report abuse

you're absolutely right. it is an urban legend which i knew but decided to keep going, spoilsport!
acc. to snopes: lee marvin was at saipan, keeshan did enlist but didn't serve in combat, and neither of them helped plant the flag which is why they weren't portrayed in that clint eastwood movie.

Posted by: methinks | March 19, 2007 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Another vote for channel 5's Captain Tugg. Not only was he butt-ugly, he was also not unaccustomed to violence; he used to warn us not to try the stuff we just watched the 3 Stooges do on our friends, siblings or pets.

Posted by: squid | March 19, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that Britney gets free press every time she poops.

Sorry, I did it again. I meant oops.

Posted by: SoMD | March 19, 2007 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I agree completely regarding the office - the original, English version is superior, in part because the acting is so much better. I was disappointed in Extras - I think it tries too hard to be hip and it lacks any real energy. Ricky's character is a bitter failure who tries to bring out the worst in everyone around him. It's just not that funny.

Posted by: ikeaboy | March 19, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

OK, I hate to say it, but Brit's biggest problem is that she is a Redneck.

Posted by: Barb | March 19, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that Britney gets free press every time she poops.

Sorry, I did it again. I meant oops.

Posted by: SoMD | March 19, 2007 01:55 PM

Nay, you mean poops, not oops. Ha!

Posted by: WDC | March 19, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Can anyone confirm...

My coworker said Britney left HS in the 10th grade. That would explain a lot! She's still living like she's in 10th grade!

Posted by: Columbia, MD | March 19, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Britney was not just romping in the bushes--she was romping AND frolicking. Hoo boy!

Posted by: lori | March 19, 2007 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I just want to point out that when I was in rehab, there was about as much chance of romping, frolicking or otherwise cavorting as there was of doing a bong hit in the cafeteria at high noon

I'm just saying....

Posted by: John D in Houston | March 19, 2007 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Is Celebritology taking bets yet on how long it takes Britney Spears to become the next Anna Nicole Smith? long will it be before we see the former pop princess slurring her words, hawking TrimSpa to the masses, and have guys coming out of the woodwork to say they fathered her children?

How many Oops are enough?

Posted by: Ken | March 20, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

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