The New York Post trumps the Daily News today by recognizing that the Heath Ledger story has legs. It has it all. Ingrained, incestuous celebrity New York, intrigue, death, many paramours on the fringes, a young child, the images of the scruffy hooded guy strolling his child in Brooklyn (will his Carroll Gardens home now be on the tour bus schedule?). It’s like another day and time when James Dean holed up on the upper west side of Manhattan and captured the iconography of his time in rain-soaked strolls through Times Square.
The chronology of this story borders on celeb fiction. Unlicensed masseuse discovers Heath dead and calls Mary Kate three times before thinking to alert police. Mary Kate sends over her bodyguard. Apparently more than 20 minutes pass while the masseuse and Mary Kate decide what to do with an obviously¬†dead body. So the awaiting blockbuster Batman movie becomes to Heath Ledger what “Giant” was to James Dean.¬† Only the good die young is a song I think about – Buddy Holly, Bruce Lee, Jimi Hendrix, James Dean, Joplin, Morrison, all around the same age as Heath Ledger. Marilyn blossomed and peaked and died at 36 in Brentwood. Can we imagine her a day older? Will we ever stop wondering about Marilyn Monroe?
This story has legs. And right now they belong to Mary-Kate Olsen.