Sean: "Special effects'll take care of that! But this isn't about my story, it's about yours."
I mean, doesn't that seem like an old man's game? There have always been both -- the ones that die, the Marilyns, are usually the ones introspective enough to see it for what it is -- but when you look at the nightmares of Hollywood, the clutching at youth and the self-sustaining ouroboros life of being surrounded by Yes Men, that seems like something that started and doesn't necessarily need to keep going. Better to be a careless little fool; better to be a phony, but a real phony.
Justifying yourself to an imaginary audience will kill you every time, because it involves splitting your soul into the observer and the observed, and the observer just happens to hate you and judge you at all times?
Van Miller is shocked -- maybe a little sad but mostly I think validated that one of his crank obsessions is actually working out -- as he listens to the confession. Mickey acting in good faith? Also shocking. You know that I love Van Miller more than almost anything, but you have to wonder about a guy who wants to be a Hater like, as his job. Harvey too, that's another kind. Or the opposite side of the coin.
I mean, I realize that Van Miller is a sexually complex man; but we form complex situations in reaction to the things we love. Second-tier Hollywood -- Ray, Ezra/Lee, Harvey, Miller in a way -- is about distributing the light the stars give off, and in order to be a part of that system you need a certain amount of radioactive sensitivity to celebrity. To love what you hate and hate what you love; to choke on what nourishes you -- and Van Miller is a living embodiment of that central idea, that fame is an aggregate action of turning the things we love into things we secretly hate. "Stars: Just Like Us" is a euphemism for what we really want, which is to rip them all apart. If they really were just like us, they wouldn't matter.
We like to be disingenuous about what we really want, which is to punish them for the power we gave them in the first place. America is to celebrities what men are to women.
Or if it were a cell, the star would be the nucleus and the industry would be the mitochondria and secondary cell structures, managers bringing oxygen and paparazzi carrying waste and lawyers are the leukocytes and every single part resents every other thing and loves it in equal measure, because its survival depends on the other parts. And I guess Ray Donovan would be the chemotherapy, because the whole thing is malignant -- running away with itself far past its ability to support its own growth.