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edge staff writer


Celebrity Slam (05/03/2017)

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Graceless under Fyre

There are those who would label what we do as a form of schadenfreude, taking delight in the misfortune of others. And while not all of our stories reach that level – we do plenty of stuff that is more of the “point-and-laugh/gently mock” variety – we certainly do embrace the more delicious opportunities when they come along.

And sometimes, well … sometimes a story comes along that is so perfect for this space that it almost doesn’t seem real. A story that we wouldn’t even try to make up for fear of coming off as too fanciful or unrealistic. A story that straight-up begs us to give it the Celebrity Slam treatment.

A story like the Fyre Festival.

For those few of you out there who might not know what we’re talking about here, you might want to buckle up, because this is one delightful mess.

The Fyre Festival was intended to be a hip music festival of sorts, aimed at millennials and other folks who considered themselves to be “social influencers” or some such nonsense. The thing was organized by rapper Ja Rule and an entrepreneurial young man by the name of Bill McFarland.

The Festival was to take place on an idyllic island in the Bahamas, a place where the beautiful people could go and not have to stand shoulder to shoulder with the riffraff at places like Coachella or whatever. The promise of scores of beautiful people roaming the grounds and music from the likes of Tyga, Major Lazer and Blink-182 was enough to get people onboard – especially with the significant promotion that was trotted out.

People were paying thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars for the chance to go to this exclusive thing where they were promised luxury villas and high-end food and music and the chance to rub elbows with important people and generally feel like a big deal.

But when they arrived, reality was much more stark. They found themselves in an rocky clearing next to a Sandals resort, surrounded by makeshift tents and cheese sandwiches and reports of musical acts canceling left and right. From front to back, top to bottom, the Fyre Festival was an utter fiasco.

So much so, in fact, that a multi-million dollar class action suit has been filed against McFarland and Ja Rule and seemingly everyone else who was even remotely involved with the whole thing.

Really, the question becomes: are we really so petty and small that we are going to take great delight in rich people having a horrible time at a ridiculous thing that they spent a ridiculous amount of money to attend? And the answer?

Yes. A thousand times yes. Of course we are. Absolutely.

Seriously – we can’t even begin to detail the number of ways this whole thing was screwed up. From not paying attention to the location to straight-up not paying vendors or artists or anybody, this thing was a s—tcircus from the word go.

Maybe the most hilarious part of the whole thing is that these money-burning idiots allowed themselves to be fleeced by Ja Rule; one of our favorite headlines about this whole thing involved someone basically saying that anyone who wrote a check to Ja Rule deserved everything they got.

It’s one of those things that looks inevitable with the benefit of hindsight. Putting together a music festival is hard. Creating one from scratch is exponentially harder. Doing all that while having zero actual experience? Harder still. And yet these morons went ahead with their Quixotic plan, turning the promotion up to 11 for something that were almost certainly going to fail to deliver.

Here’s the thing: it seems unlikely that this thing was an intentional scam. These idiots are too incompetent for that. However, they probably should have pulled the plug before people started showing up – you can’t tell us that the Fyre crew was unaware of how utterly unacceptable the situation was long before the day of.

Honestly, stories like this one are among the best we get here at Celebrity Slam – a lose-lose where we can unabashedly and unapologetically delight in the misfortune of both sides. In truth, the only winner here is us.

Last modified on Thursday, 11 May 2017 10:01


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