Last week, the blogs were aflutter with the news that Katy Perry’s Evangelical mother is trying to sell a book about her daughter’s sinful lifestyle, and it got us thinking about other parents who have displayed questionable judgment when it comes to their famous offspring. Read on for a roundup of Hollywood’s most notoriously unfit parents, from the Lohans to Joe Jackson.
Dina and Michael Lohan
With role models like these, it’s no wonder Lindsay “Lindsay” Lohan turned to drugs and alcohol just to stay afloat. Michael is the only Lohan who has a longer rap sheet than Lindsay, with charges ranging from insider trading to driving under the influence to attempted assault. And the only thing he does more frequently than talk to the press about Lindsay is booze. Meanwhile, Dina is desperate to be a pseudo-celebrity in her own right, and conceived that god-awful reality show ‘Living Lohan’ as a way to capitalize on her other potential cash cow, daughter Ali. She even invited a crew from ‘Entertainment Tonight’ to film the troubled Lindsay while she was in drug rehab. Parents of the year these two losers aren’t.
Papa Joe Simpson
Anyone who willingly adopts the moniker “Papa Joe” is an automatic creep. Case in point: Jessica Simpson’s dad-slash-manager. Before he became a money-hungry, reality television “star,” Joe Simpson was a Southern minister and psychologist– they’ll give a PhD to just about anyone in Texas–with the good fortune to produce two pretty, moderately talented daughters. Now, Joe is best known for having made an inappropriate remark about his daughter’s boobs. It was something along the lines of, “Jessica never tries to be sexy. She just IS sexy. If you put her in a T-shirt or you put her in a bustier, she’s sexy in both. She’s got double D’s! You can’t cover those suckers up!” So, um, that happened.
The only thing less appropriate than talking about your daughter’s boobs is letting your drug dealer touch them, and that’s what actress Tatum O’Neal alleges in her 2005 autobiography, ‘A Paper Life.’ Tatum, who has a well-documented drug problem, blames a lot of her troubles on a tumultuous upbringing that included persistent molestation at the hand of her father’s drug dealer, neglect, beatings, underage drinking and drug use. Ryan has denied those allegations, but he was arrested in 2007 for assaulting Tatum’s brother, Griffin. He was also arrested the following year when a healthy supply of methamphetamines were discovered at the actor’s home during a probation check on his other son, Redmond.
For proof that Joe Jackson is a terrible father, you need only look at any one of his 500 children. OK, nine children. But still. From the disturbing body dysmorphic disorder that plagued Michael (who admitted that he would often become ill or vomit upon seeing his father) to the countless instances of physical and psychological abuse perpetrated against his talented clan, Joe is one of the worst parental figures in history. He messed those kids up good.
The original ‘Mildred Pierce’ actress is as famous for her Academy Award-winning career as her poor parenting skills, which were documented in her daughter Christina’s 1978 tell-all memoir, ‘Mommie Dearest.’ The book gives a horrifying account of the emotional and physical abuse suffered by Crawford’s four children (all adopted) at the hand of their alcoholic mother, including one incident in which Crawford tried to strangle Christina. The book went on to become a feature film in 1981 starring Faye Dunaway as Joan, who was portrayed as an ax-wielding lunatic. Thirty years later, references to ‘Mommie Dearest’ are still commonplace in the pop culture vernacular.
(A more G-rated version of this article was originally published on PopEater.com.)