With the death of Mike Starr, a former Celebrity Rehab participant, the time has come to talk about why the show needs to be shut down. No, not because of Starr’s death—“If every recovery center had to close down after a former patient relapsed and died, we'd have no facilities left,” notes Drew Grant on Salon—but because it’s become completely obvious that Dr. Drew Pinsky “is not helping anyone,” Grant writes. By mixing true addicts with people like Rachel Uchitel, who was supposedly addicted to love, the show is no longer about treatment.
Instead, it’s about “creating the perfect storm of volatile and absurd characters in order to remain entertaining.” The problem is Dr. Drew’s fascination with a condition he calls “celebrity narcissism,” a form of narcissism that “drives young people to seek out celebrity status.” By blurring the lines between drug addicts and so-called celebrity narcissists, “those in the cast battling drug problems become secondary, even though they remain most at-risk,” Grant concludes. To help anyone, Celebrity Rehab must “decide what it wants to be: a show about recovering drug addicts and alcoholics, or a show about the addiction of celebrity.” Click for the full column.