April 5, 2005

I'm Sorry Ms. Simpson

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It’s easy to be a critic of Ashlee Simpson. She has yet to show the American public that she can actually carry a tune, she has achieved stardom seemingly overnight (with the help of her proud papa Joe Simpson) and she does spell her name with the unceremonious “ee” instead of “ey.” But I am here to defend Ashlee. So far, the Ashlee Simpson Fan Club is just me, her sometimes boyfriend Ryan Cabrerra and her big sister Jessica Simpson-Lachey, but hopefully you will be swayed because we could use some more members.

Ashlee’s now famous Saturday Night Live Fiasco, complete with an embarrassing dance move and complaints of a Thyroid-induced throat ailment, led to a media firestorm claiming Simpson, who co-wrote the music on her poppy but praised first album, could not sing. To make matters worse, Ashlee was then booed off stage at the Rose Bowl a month or so later. Arguably, Ashlee has had many opportunities to show that she has talent. There is the MTV reality series The Ashlee Simpson Show (on after sister Jessica Simpson’s now finished Newlyweds), the album and now the tour. Often on the show Ashlee immaturely makes excuses, which makes its difficult to defend her. In The Ashlee Simpson Show season ender, which premiered last week, Ashlee prepared and performed the first show on her new tour. There were no mistakes and the show went smoothly.

Currently there is an online petition to make Ashlee stop singing and Liquid Generation offers a game on its website called “The Ashlee Simpson Lip-Syncing Hoe Down.” Maybe she wasn’t ready for the spotlight, maybe she doesn’t have the vocal chords of her big sister but isn’t this the Hollywood star we have created? The Hollywood of Star Magazine and US Weekly? Give her a break.

Ashlee is college-aged, and yet she is not doing anything cerebral. Do we hate her because she doesn’t have to hand in papers just because we can’t do the same?Last weekend was my 21st birthday. That’s right, I can now legally make a fool of myself. Are you really going to sit and judge someone as if you have never made embarrassing mistakes? At least yours weren’t on public television.

Archived article by Logan Bromer
Arts and Entertainment Associate Editor