The National Enquirer recently shocked and disgusted a lot of people by publishing a photo of Whitney Houston in a casket. The photo was reportedly taken during the private funeral service held for the late singer, so the tabloid is getting a lot of criticism for sharing it with the world.
Unfortunately the last image of Whitney isn't the only celebrity death photo that has caused controversy. The National Enquirer has a long history of publishing controversial death photos, including one of Elvis Presley in his casket. The tabloid also acted in very bad taste a few days ago when it published photos of a model re-enacting Whitney's death scene (the cover photo showed her lying face-down on a bathroom floor).
A photo of Anna Nicole in a body bag also caused quite a controversy for the rag that thrives on the sensational - no one was sure if it was the real deal or not. However, the photo of Michael Jackson that was splashed all over the place was authentic - the picture of his lifeless body on a gurney was used at Dr. Conrad Murray's trial. Michael's mother Katherine was reportedly "very upset" because the family did not want it released to the public, and it's really impossible to imagine how Michael's kids feel knowing that it's out there.
Prince William was probably also extremely distraught when he learned about a controversial photo of his mother being featured in a documentary. Pop star Lily Allen's father Keith directed a movie about the fateful night in France when she lost her life entitled "Unlawful Killing," and it featured a graphic, controversial photograph of Princess Diana taken shortly after the car crash that killed her. Such a picture is certainly a sad last snapshot of someone who was so full of life.
Rapper Tupac Shakur's autopsy photo is probably one of the most graphic celebrity death photos in existence. The shocking photo was published in a book about his death, and it's safe to say that its disturbing nature upset many of the rapper's fans. It also disappointed some of the conspiracy theorists who believed that Tupac was still alive and well after getting shot.
So why do people want to see celebrity death photos? It seems rather morbid, but perhaps it's just hard for some fans to believe that the stars that they love have passed on. After all, so many of them seem immortal through their photos, songs, movies, and TV shows. Since a fan's only connection to a celebrity is through different forms of media, it can be difficult for some to accept that they're really gone.
But what do you think of the fascination with photos of deceased celebrities - are the people who gawk at them sick; do they seek them out as some form of closure; or is morbid curiosity just a part of being human?
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- The National Enquirer
- Whitney Houston
- Michael Jackson