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*** update August 2016 – bottom
Hi, come on in. Please, have a seat. I am glad you came. Listen, we have to talk about Gary Busey. We are WAY past the ‘what the fuck’ stage. Way way past.
So, I watch Celebrity Apprentice, Big Brother, Dancing with the Stars… all of it. I blame my wife! I am not proud of it, but I like to see how successful people interact with each other. I am always curious if these people are dicks or not… and I get a pretty decent feeling from the show who is and isn’t. Example? Bret Michaels > not a dick. Star Jones? Monster dick! Omarosa? Second Worst person alive!
What really puzzles me is Gary Busey. That guy is cooked. Fried. Absolutely nothing left in his gas tank. He seems to be mentally retarded, with the capabilities of roughly a 6 year old. Now, keep in mind that Border Collies have the intellect of a 3 year old human… and know more words than Busey. So, I needed to know how long this has been. Has he always been nuts? Is he just famous for being famous? I remember he did that Buddy Holly movie, and KILLED it. I can’t think of a single other thing he has done of significance in acting. So… was he a functional retarded person back when he did that? I did some digging for you. Well, actually I did some digging while chatting with Jamie, but I figured it was too good not to share.
I went back to 1978, when he did Buddy Holly. There is not much I can glean from this time behind the scenes of his life. The earliest I could find was this performance on Carson in 1985. What do we have in 1985? A handsome, beefy, and engaging Gary Busey. Sure, the shirt is suspect, but this is a funny and decently likable guy. So, he wasn’t always this dim. That is great news, I think.
He has often talked about a very very serious and terrible motorcycle accident he had in 1988. Apparently, this gave him brain damage and might have been what cooked him. So, that explains it, right? I am just an insensitive asshole making fun of an old guy with brain damage! Nope. Turns out that is not the case at all. See this appearance below from 1990 on Letterman. He is even more engaging, more likable, better looking, and even funnier. This guy is a dream talk show guest on the top of his game. He even quickly references his motorcycle accident and brain damage. So, that isn’t it then.
So what was it? I can’t figure it out. I know he also had a very public overdose drama in 1995. Maybe that, coupled with the accident, just cooked him. I used to be so annoyed by watching him. I thought it was an act. It isn’t. He is mentally incredibly feeble. I seriously doubt that he can even take care of himself. So, now when I watch, it is more like a sad feeling of watching a bird try and fly away after your cat ate its wings.
So when did he fly off the rails? Was it a slow burn, or did he just wake up one day completely nuts? I wrote this before the last celeb apprentice where he got booted. He got booted because they asked him to demo a suite of LG products, and his plan to do so was a commercial about a robotic barking dog.
Good luck and god speed to you, Mr Busey. I think to best sum up, we will go with a Hunter Thompson quote >
Update Sept 2015 > I get a lot of negative feedback asking why I am so mean, and insensitive to brain damage. I am NOT mean. I am not here to mock, I am super curious as to what happened, when, and why. You are here because you, too, are curious. Note, if I wanted to be mean, I could have found a thousand clips of him being a space cadet. All my clips, carefully researched, are of an articulate and engaging Gary Busey. I challenge you to find a more even handed look at the man.
He is making millions just being Gary Busey. That is what he does, and it’s all he does. He isn’t acting. He is just being his creepy, sad, brilliant, childlike self. His popularity, though, (we can all agree) is for the cruelest of reasons. I think when people watch him, it is similar to slowing down to watch an accident. I don’t watch him anymore, on any shows. It freaks me out, and breaks my heart. Leave Gary Busey Alone! At least he is laughing all the way to the bank.
*** update August 2016
final thoughts on this piece
I wrote this years ago, as you can see. Here are my final thoughts, and they are awesomely contradictory
- His handlers should be ashamed of themselves, and taken away. This guy ONLY gets jobs because he is infantile and sadly incompetent. Trust me, I know he has handlers making these decisions. I don’t know that he could feed himself or dress himself without help. How could they just throw him out there for a few dollars to watch the world laugh at his foibles
- But then I think – he clearly seems happy, and to be having fun. I think he is also (luckily) unaware that he has regressed to a child like state. So, even if he is only being hired for some kind of schadenfreude… who the hell cares? If he is happy, what business is it of ours?