[quote]Paula Yates was the tabloids’ darling for a while, when her on-screen flirtatiousness was neutralised by its distinctive Carry On Interviewing vibe and the fact of her rockstar boyfriend, Bob Geldof… When she had an affair with Terence Trent D’Arby in the late 80s, the disapprobation from the press felt neurotic, as if a collective ego wound had been inflicted. … But we might still look at the headlines – “Bob’s Paula caught with black star”, in the News of the World… That cocktail of racism and sexism – they acknowledge Trent D’Arby is a star, yet it’s still more important that he’s black than what his name is. Paula Yates is Geldof’s chattel.
[quote]It was only when Yates left Geldof for Hutchence in 1995 that Fleet Street turned remorselessly against her… the 60-plus photographers camped permanently outside her house… Then the voices of the moral majority chime in, the “who does she think she is?” brigade. Then the supposedly sympathetic media wing, the feminists, the satirists, bring up the rear: “You seem like such an intelligent woman, why did you flaunt yourself in this way?”
[quote]By 1997, the most appalling tragedy has struck: she has lost the love of her life; and in the same week the red tops have broken the story that her putative father wasn’t her father. She attempted suicide the following year, as a result of which she lost custody of her children to Bob Geldof. And still it doesn’t stop. “Pathetic Paula makes mockery of love and loss”; “Why poor Paula is only as good as the last man she slept with.” She tells Townsend at one point that she got sent her own obituary by accident, by one of the tabloids: “Headline, suicide blonde.” But that was sent in the post, to her address: how was that an accident? The cruelty was unmitigated, and the responsibility wholly distributed.
[quote]The fundamental charge, here, is not that Yates was promiscuous or adulterous; culture was not united, certainly by the mid-90s, on promiscuity being an untrammelled evil. No, it was that Paula Yates was an attention-seeker, uppity, spoilt, self-promoting.
[quote]A coroner found that Paula Yates had not tried to take her own life when she died: she was the victim, rather, of her efforts at recovery. She had fallen off the wagon after rehab, and if she had been a habitual drug user, that amount of heroin wouldn’t have killed her.
I thought Terence Trent D’Arby was gay?