20. Huge in South America
New-waver loses mind, drops pants
Warren Cuccurullo was once a normal, skinny, new-wave guitar hero. But sometime between leaving Duran Duran and re-forming his original band, Missing Persons, Cuccurullo lost his hair and, quite possibly, his mind. Today, he’s a buff, greased-up, sex fiend who markets something called the “Rock Rod,” a rubber replica of his penis (“overall length 8″…diameter 1 3/4″…robust scrotum”), and promotes himself as “the first rock star to ever pose in a magazine with an erection” (a 27-page spread in Brazilian gay mag G). He also uploads homemade porn on his website (where he answers fans’ questions about “music, sex, nutrition, or bodybuilding”). Could it all be a big, sticky cry for help?
19. Don’t Cry for Me, Mexico
Pop-star manager’s teen sex cult
With her untamed hair, busty figure, torn stockings, and pro-choice/pro-sex political statements, Gloria Trevi was celebrated as the “Mexican Madonna” in the early 1990s. A police warrant suggests that at the same time, Trevi was also procuring starstruck teenage girls for her fortysomething manager, Sergio Andrade, who would beat them, make them drink from toilets, rape them, and force them into prostitution. Andrade and Trevi (who hooked up with Andrade at 14), fled Mexico in 1999 when accusations hit the tabloids. They were arrested in Rio de Janeiro in 2000 and locked up in a Brazilian prison for 25 months, where Trevi became pregnant, claiming that she’d been raped by a prison guard. DNA tests later proved Andrade was the father. Trevi returned to Mexico with her young son in December of 2002; she still awaits a court date in a prison in Chihuahua.
18. When Divas Attack!
Whitney Houston, from frying pan to fire
After a year of très sleazy rumors–drug abuse, marital drama–Whitney Houston, 39, encored by verbally bitch-slapping ABC News personality Diane Sawyer and New York radio rumormonger Wendy Williams in a pair of finger-wagging interviews. First, Houston appeared on Primetime Thursday (seated beside profusely sweating, drunk-driving, drug-abusing husband Bobby Brown) and acknowledged her own drug use (“I partied my tail off”), though she denied that crack was her poison: “Crack is cheap. I make too much for me to ever smoke crack.” Houston also unconvincingly addressed claims that she’s anorexic or bulimic (“Whitney is not going to be fat–ever”). About two months later, during an impromptu interview on Williams’ WBLS radio show, Houston cursed out Williams for talking “about me every fucking day” and prying into her personal affairs (Houston then candidly discussed her breast implants). Replied Williams, “Whitney was not in her right mind. She was ghetto, and I mean, ghet-to!”
17. I Don’t Think We’re Alone Now
Tiffany grows up by taking it off
Tiffany’s 2000 comeback album, The Color of Silence, impressed critics, but her label went bankrupt before its release. So how could the former teen queen send the message that she was now a singer/songwriter who’d emerged from her dark youth with wisdom to share? Get freakin’ naked! “This pictorial will shake the world from its belief that Tiffany is still a 15-year-old performer, rather than a 30-year-old wife and mother,” Tiffany said shortly before the April 2002 issue of Playboy hit the stands. People did start talking about Tiffany again; unfortunately, they were saying things like, “Geez, do you think those are real?”
16. Are They or Aren’t They?
T.A.T.U. play footsie with teenage girls
In a downtown Manhattan restaurant, an older, male American rep for T.A.T.U.’s Lena Katina and Julia Volkova is planning a SoHo shopping spree. “We need really chic but informal clothes,” he says. “It’s all Miss Sixty in Moscow now–we need something more Melrose.” But the real mastermind behind the Russian teen duo’s success–and sexualized, lesbian image–is Moscow-based manager Ivan Shapovalov, a former child psychiatrist and advertising exec who auditioned 500 girls while plotting his pet project. According to Katina, 18, “[Ivan] is a very good psychiatrist. He thought that maybe we have something more than friendship, so he said, ‘Girls, why don’t you show it to everybody?’ Most people are afraid of these feelings. But we said ‘Okay, let’s do it.'” And teenage girls have responded. Says 14-year-old Sara Marcus of New Haven, Connecticut, “It’s even becoming a lot more popular for girls to dance with other girls at school dances.” While Katina and Volkova willingly swap saliva in their made-to-be-banned “All the Things She Said” video, their passion seems to fade when they’re away from the spotlight. Shapovalov has admitted that the same-sex-teen angle is “cheap PR” and doesn’t mean the girls are lesbians. “I hope to God it’s not true,” says Marcus. “That would be some kind of cruel joke.”
15. Physical Graffiti
Navarro loses grotto pass
Before he started picking out china patterns with Carmen Electra, Jane’s Addiction/Red Hot Chili Peppers sideman Dave Navarro was the quintessential superfreak. In his autobiography, Don’t Try This at Home: A Year in the Life of Dave Navarro, the guitarist and three female companions visit the Playboy Mansion’s “orgy room.” As the women have sex, Navarro shoots up heroin, then tries to write on the wall with blood squirted from his syringe. “I cleaned it off,” Navarro wrote, saying he “felt weird” about defiling Hef’s crib. Nonetheless, he was quickly bounced (and banned) from the mansion.
14. Backstreet Siege
The persecution of Nick Carter
“I’m not a bad person” was Nick Carter’s response to his 2002 dustup outside a Tampa nightclub. Maybe so, but that doesn’t explain why the youngest Backstreet Boy was screaming at an unnamed woman for so long that the police ordered him ten times to exit the premises. Later, in the backseat of a police car, Carter broke down crying, then wailed, “You just want to arrest a Backstreet Boy!” Meanwhile, the other Boys filed a $75 million lawsuit against Zomba, their record label’s parent company, complaining that Carter’s solo album drew attention away from the group’s new record. Cry us a river.
13. He’s Bad
Cows perish in voodoo ritual
At the time of his 1983 music video “Thriller,” Michael Jackson reassured us that the subject matter (dancing zombies, Ola Ray) did not mean that he held occult beliefs. But an exposé in Vanity Fair claims that during the summer of 2000, Jackson participated in a voodoo ritual in Switzerland with the intent of eliminating entertainment titans David Geffen, Steven Spielberg, and 23 others. (The intended victims were supposed to die within a week. They did not.) The procedure, conducted by a witch doctor named Baba, cost $150,000 and involved the slaughter of 42 cows. According to the New York Post, Jacko felt Spielberg had betrayed him by rescinding an offer to star in a live-action version of Peter Pan. Liz Taylor better watch her back
12. Dr. Cliff Huxtable He Ain’t
50 Cent’s Guide to Thug Parenting
With a seeming army of haters aching to kill him, rap star/ endangered species 50 Cent is understandably worried about the safety of his six-year-old son Marquise. So what’s 50’s plan? How about a tailor-made, kiddie-size, navy-blue Kevlar vest, which Marquise will wear onstage during his father’s tour dates! Now, we know he loves his son, but was any thought given to just keeping the child safely at home?
11. Defrocked Doctor
Hollywood’s “Dr. Feelgood” gets revoked
For years, Jules “Cash-and-Carry” Lusman, 49, a Santa Monica, California, specialist in laser treatments and hair transplants, was allegedly the go-to guy for celebrities who needed a quick prescription fix. And business was booming until Dr. Feelgood met up with the Gen X Banger sisters–Courtney Love and Winona Ryder, whom he loaded up with all the “painkillers” (injectable Demerol, Vicodin, Vicoprofen, Percodan, Percocet, etc.) one needs to crash every… But when Ryder was sentenced last year for shoplifting, Lusman’s shady practices were revealed, and the California Medical Association yanked his license.
10. Please, Oh God, Not Again!
Caution, naked Courtney Love crossing
If there were any female celebrity whom the editors of Maxim might ask to put her clothes back on, it would be Courtney Love. Ms. Love, who has produced more plastic-surgery bills than music during the past ten years, is getting more nakedly out of control as she nears her 40th birthday. A 24-hour marathon as an MTV2 VJ last year was a train wreck of nipple-flashing and name-dropping; and during a recent Q magazine listening session/photo shoot, she played demos of new songs, posed topless lying in the middle of a London street, and, at one point, demanded that her beautician “wax my anus.”
9. Dogged Out
DMX abandons his best friends
With the tattoo of his late dog’s name across his back and his barking rhyme style, DMX gave signs of being an attentive pet owner. But in January of 2002, he pleaded guilty to 13 counts of animal cruelty for keeping his pit bulls locked in feces-filled cages in the basement and garage of his New Jersey home. According to his mother-in-law, X was preoccupied smoking crack and waving a 9 mm pistol at her.
8. Marilyn the Molester
Antichrist superstar rubs head, pays fine
When concert security guard Joshua Keasler showed up for work at Michigan’s DTE Energy Music Theatre on the night of July 30, 2001, he had no idea that Marilyn Manson was going to molest his head. The Army veteran and father of three was guarding the stage during Manson’s performance when the rocker, clad only in a black G-string, began grinding his crotch into Keasler’s head and neck. Manson, who was sued by Minneapolis concert security guard David M. Diaz for a similar action in the fall of 2000, pleaded no contest to charges of battery, assault, and disorderly conduct; he was fined $4,000. “It’s a victory for art,” Manson told reporters after sentencing.
7. Dude, Your Sheep Head Broke My Skull!
Last March, Maniac, singer for Norwegian black-metal outfit Mayhem, took the stage outside Oslo, humbled by a band legacy that includes former singer Dead committing suicide in 1991, guitarist Euronymous cooking and eating Dead’s brain, and bassist Count Grishnackh stabbing Euronymous to death. Still, Maniac got the party started by decapitating a dead sheep and sticking its head on a knife. But buzzes were harshed when said head flew off the blade and hit a fan, fracturing his skull.
6. Not Half the Man He Used to Be
McCartney finally shows Lennon who’s boss
You put up with the prick for years, you watch him canonized after his murder, and then you spend three decades getting called the wimpy yin to his rebel yang. Finally, Beatles’ eminence Paul McCartney could take it no more. So, on a recent live album, Sir Paul switched the hallowed songwriting credit of “Lennon-McCartney” to read “McCartney-Lennon.” (Has a nice ring to it, eh?) He also pulled the same switcheroo on a live Wings album from 1976. McCartney complains that Lennon’s name comes first on “Yesterday,” which McCartney wrote by himself. Experts suspect symptoms of early-onset Beatle-mentia.
5. Hello, Lambs!
Mariah Carey screams for ice cream
Officially, she was “exhausted,” but before checking into a New York hospital in July 2001, Mariah Carey went on a remarkable binge of public meltdowns. First, she bum-rushed MTV’s TRL, pushing an ice-cream cart and freaking out host Carson Daly by reading a love letter to him from her mother (did we mention she was stripping at the time?). Later, Carey reportedly smashed glasses and dishes in a New York City hotel suite, then left nutty fan-site messages to her “lambs,” stating a need for “like, a minute off.” Carey also declared, “I would like to walk out of a hotel with some dignity,” a mere week after taking off her clothes (again) in a strip bar. The worst part? Carey promised fans that they’d have a very special movie to sustain them until she recovered. Sadly, Glitter shoved us all over the edge
4. Nature’s Finest
Rapper Treach lets his boys out to party
When Snoop Dogg made his porn entree, it was behind the scenes–providing music for the sex flick Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle and hosting Girls Gone Wild Doggy Style. But Naughty by Nature’s Treach kicked it up a notch by becoming the first major rapper-turned-actor to go frontally nude in a movie (2002’s Love and a Bullet). Brand Nubian’s Lord Jamar also aired out his boys on HBO’s prison drama Oz, but Treach’s Naturally Naughty… Porno Movie, which featured the rapper in a graphic threesome, made Jamar look like a shrinking violet.
3. J.Lo: The Charity-Case Diva
Used to have a little, now she wants a lot
While in Miami in late 2001 filming a charity video–for a remake of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” to benefit African AIDS and 9/11 victims–Jennifer Lopez had her people submit an elaborate rider. Apparently, Jenny No Longer From the Block doesn’t feel charitable unless she’s given a 45-foot trailer that “ABSOLUTELY MUST” include a TV, a VCR, and a CD player, as well as a white dressing room outfitted with white couches, white tables, white candles, white drapes, white roses, and white lilies, plus, mangos, green seedless grapes, papaya, apple pie (àla mode), brownies, and an “assortment of current” CDs (Nelly, Beck, Matchbox Twenty). But her heart was always with the victims. Really, it was.
2. Millionaire Pop Princesses in Heat!
The descent into video sleaze
From MTV’s inception, the sleazy music-video formula was set–heavily styled male rock band + rollicking sex kitten + hot prop (car hood, fire hose, etc.) = wicked good time. But in recent years, choreography began to take more cues from pornography, until one day some genius realized that the band wasn’t even needed. For Britney Spears’ “I’m a Slave 4 U” clip, the pop princess writhed and panted while anonymous hands pawed her glistening abs. Christina Aguilera stepped it up in 2002 with “Dirrty,” which showed X-tina pawing herself and dry-humping her male dancers. Two posters seen in the video even featured Thai script that translated to “Young Underage Girls” and “Thailand’s Sex Tourism.” The Thai government threatened legal action. But in the age of video sin, that’s just the price of doing business.
20. Huge in South America