Friday, July 10, 2015

Ryan Jarman defends Courtney Love

Ryan Jarman launches into a spirited defence of Courtney Love in a blog for the NME freesheet.

There are a lot of grounds to call out people who attack Love - some are motivated by sexism; some forget that she has had a stack of challenges to deal with; just waving Celebrity Skin should be enough. Jarman's case, though, seems to rest on her being a chum:

I stayed at her place for a bit and it was such a fun time because Courtney is a total star and when you live with her she absolutely shows you that proper side of being famous. It's kind of trippy and amazing. To a newer generation of people, she still wields a lot of power because of who she was when they were growing up. She still conducts herself in the same way - she hasn't mellowed in any way. Absolutely, she is exactly as you'd expect and the way she presents herself in the public eye is not put on whatsoever.
That's lovely, but... it's not really a defence, is it? 'Don't slag her off because she's the same behind closed doors' would only work if the Love-Haters suggested she was fake, and I don't think even Courtney's strongest detractor has ever accused her of putting on an act. Indeed, many pops at her are motivated by concern that she doesn't change her behaviour when she's in public. Courtney Love has never been a woman with an Outdoor Voice.

The trouble with Jarman's defence of Courtney is that it simply ignores the missteps Love has made. Those - the throwing of bottles; the battles with Courtney Love the band; beating up David Gedge at Reading because he'd worked with Albini; tussling through the courts with the rest of Nirvana; the list goes on - are fair grounds to question some of her decisions. And those fair grounds have, over the years, become fairgrounds on which more extreme whack-a-Hole games have been established.

If you want to say 'it's gone too far' or 'she doesn't deserve all this', that's fine. But to do that effectively, you have to understand where it began.

If you love Courtney Love for who she is, and what she is, you have to understand that she's always been uncompromising.

And you have to understand that not being willing to compromise isn't going to endear you to a lot of people.

Ryan Jarman knows Courtney Love. I'm not convinced he knows people, though.

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