“Let our rigorous testing and reviews be your guidelines to A/V equipment – not marketing slogans”
Facebook Youtube Twitter instagram pinterest

Heath Ledger Ghoul Stands: Tragedy on DVD or Blu-ray

by January 31, 2008
Lets Pimp the Dead Guy

Let's Pimp the Dead Guy

Have you seen the laser-printer memorials to Heath Ledger at the local DVD retailer? Only a week ago I barely knew who Ledger was, but those displays make me sick!

I remember when CDs were still an exciting new technology, just becoming mainstream. It was about the time Kurt Cobain died under tragic circumstances.

In no time, a local hepster record store got out some colored magic markers and drew up a cute likeness of the grunge rocker. The handmade drawing was used in an oh-so-hip sign atop a shelf dealing in bargain-priced copies of Nevermind and In Utero.

The clientele of the store expressed general disdain for the display and it was soon taken down. That was Detroit in the ’90s, which fortunately had no shortage of trendy record stores or (believe it or not) tactful respect for the dead.

We had a taboo against blatantly cashing in on tragedy and dining upon the flesh of a deceased celebrity’s notoriety.

I’m not really a Heath Ledger fan. Of course, I was as impressed as anyone by his rendition of Joker in the Dark Knight trailer. He could go down in history as the best Joker ever - and that’s high praise as his name would be up there with Caesar Romero and Jack Nicholson.

But I really don’t recall Ledger in any of the movies I’ve heard he was in AND –

I’ve never seen Brokeback Mountain.

To me a movie cowboy wields a Colt 45, and if he’s a sensitive cowboy - okay, maybe a Schofield.

But not a day after Ledger’s death, I saw a display of his movies at a local big-box retailer, much like the one in the record store all those years ago. Only this time customers were oblivious to the display’s ghoulery. People gleefully ogled and picked from the stand, as if being seen with a Ledger movie put them in the thick of the breaking story.

Has society changed that much in 14 years? Is it okay for humans to posses the conscience of a search engine?

I know if these words are copied through RSS feeds and appear on certain pages, a Google-bot, Amazon or Shop search engine might pick through it for keywords and display ads based on some word-for-profit algorithm. But I’ve always held people to higher standards than a line of code.

Okay I’m done. Now, pass me a shot of bourbon and the Schofield.

Confused about what AV Gear to buy or how to set it up? Join our Exclusive Audioholics E-Book Membership Program!


About the author:

Wayde is a tech-writer and content marketing consultant in Canada s tech hub Waterloo, Ontario and Editorialist for Audioholics.com. He's a big hockey fan as you'd expect from a Canadian. Wayde is also US Army veteran, but his favorite title is just "Dad".

View full profile

Recent Forum Posts:

cbraver posts on February 01, 2008 20:17
Displays are made for when there are lots of requests for something that becomes popular. Probably after he died people were walking in and asking employees for Heath Ledger movie recommendations and half of them didn't know what movies he has been in other than “that gay cowboy one.” Most of his movies weren't that interesting to the majority of people working movie stories. Now they can just say there is a table in front with his movies on it. People become interested in famous people who die. Just wait till Batman comes out.

Honestly, what concerns me more is peoples interest in celebrities struggling in general, which is far more than stores supporting it. For example, people follow Amy Winehouse's drug addiction with almost a sick pleasure. It's creepy to me. The girl is smoking crack and people are spreading videos over the net. I hope she gets better, and people doing such things doesn't help her at all. Or maybe they just haven't been exposed to drug addiction and they want a taste of it. I don't really know. From listening to people talk around campus, it almost seems as if people WANT Ledger's death to be self-inflicted. People lust for this stuff, and it's sad. It makes me worry for my generation. We have time to watch Paris Hilton do a line or something, but don't know what is going on with the election.
chadnliz posts on February 01, 2008 17:20
There is a slight chance that a store mgr, owner feels bad about his death and is taking note of his passing and feeling odd about selling his films, but has a business to run.
It is a far better chance that it is to draw attention to the event and his body of work to make a buck……and thats sad.
Alex2507 posts on February 01, 2008 17:18
Joe Schmoe, post: 368625
My mom saw Brokeback Mountain and said it was very sad. I am not a fan of tearjerkers, so that is the only reason I haven't seen it.
Some reviewer called it a gentle love story. It really was except for the part where one dude was ramming another dude in the rear. Give me a break. In all fairness the movie was sad but I gotta say that once was enough.

I'm genuinely sorry for him, his family and loved ones. His death must be devastating to them. As for the vultures, I'm sure they will have losses of their own to groove on sooner or later.
Wayde Robson posts on February 01, 2008 15:09
no problemo JohnD, I was pretty sure I knew where you were coming from, don't worry about misunderstanding.

That's the great thing about forums, they a huge democracy. Their job is to ramble, rant, rave - get it all out there. If anyone misunderstands where someone is coming from, it can all be sorted out with more rants later
Johnd posts on February 01, 2008 14:54
Wayde Robson, post: 368599
The bold emphasis is only because it's a hot topic I am hearing around the watercooler lately. People will ask… have you seen BBM? The macho guys usually cower. I just think it's funny.

I didn't mean it as a homophobic remark at all. But I did mean what I said about movie cowboys. The only thing that interests me about the movie is it's directed by Ang Lee who I respect, I like a lot of his movies.

Hey Wayde. A little confusion. I quicky detect these things in conversations, and the misunderstanding is readily corrected. Not so fortunate with written discussion.

I did not mean to imply that you made a homophobic comment. Although I understand why you would think that: I put it in the same paragraph. My apologies. You have brought attention to a great young actor who has unfortunately passed long before his time, and how some people take advatage of that tragedy. I tend to ramble a little with my thoughts when I write these posts…and include a lot of my thoughts without first proofing the structure/composition. So I thank you for your report, and apologize for any misunderstanding (due to my writing). I have thoroughly enjoyed (and been informed) all your reports and editorials that I've read. Cheers.
Post Reply