The Jessica Alba You Don't See

Illustration for article titled The Jessica Alba You Don't See

It's not easy being Jessica Alba. Okay, that is maybe a lie. But after a bit of snarkitive coverage we'd been showering on the pretty (vapid) star of late, we received a touching email from someone claiming to be one of her old buddies from the child star equivalent of band camp. (Yeah, we checked her out.) At sixteen, the tipster writes, Jessica had a face that could launch a thousand "I'd like to manage you"s, but somewhat unfortunately, she was already very much managed. A good person if a shitty actress, the young Miss Alba also vulnerable and wont to crushing on boys, eating "like a trucker" and laughing at fart jokes during concentration exercises. "As normal," in other words, "as any 16-year-old girl whose destiny had been planned out by paid professionals could be expected to be." Well, except for the Bible shit. A fond trip down teenage drama camp memory lane with a Jezebel tipster after the jump.


Hi. Can I put in my anonymous two cents about Jessica Alba being a useless bit of painted meat in a dress? I was [friends] with Jessica about 10 years ago at [REDACTED] and I got to know her as well as I could, being myself painfully uncool, awkward and (shocker) dramatic. She was in her Jesus phase (nightly bedtime bible dipping), had braces on her teeth, and was constantly tossing the scripts her manager sent in the trash (amused when I told her she should recycle,) unread. She was extremely beautiful then, in that special way that any confident, care-free teenager is beautiful, but also in the kind of way that made complete strangers stop her on the street and remark, "You are the most beautiful person I've ever seen in real life" — even when we were just shlumping to the diner for pancakes in our PJs. Jessica was so highly managed that she was completely out of touch with reality, but she was normal at the core, wanting to do my hair (which I shallowly resented at the time) crushing on boys, and giggling at fart jokes when we were doing concentration exercises. The cold reality is that it was clear to everyone (including, I think, to our instructors Bill Macy and Felicity Huffman, David Mamet, Clark Gregg et al., who were all too tactful, professional or entranced by her beauty to ever let on) that she had absolutely no chops as an actress whatsoever. That being said, I don't think it was at all her fault. Jessica's a product. Since she was little, she's been tracked toward being a lovely container for someone else's aspirations. And as any good manager knows, if you're going to fill someone else up with your artificial identity, there can't be any room for her own. I honestly don't think she really wanted to be an actress. Especially not a *serious* actress. She wanted to be 16 and fail history quizzes and pick out prom dresses and learn to be smart the hard way like the rest of us. But she didn't have any say in the matter. Someone decided that she would be beautiful and talented and smart, no matter the cost. I guess I kind of want to stick up for the girl I knew that summer, even though lord knows she doesn't need any favors from me. She wasn't a bitch, she wasn't stuck-up, she ate like a trucker, was goofy and vulnerable, handled the communal bathrooms with aplomb, and was as normal as any 16-year-old girl whose destiny had been planned out by paid professionals could be expected to be. When we parted ways, I watched the Jessica Alba(tm) product develop and I came to realize that she never stood a chance. She'd never make her own decisions, speak her mind or have her own opinions. And she'd always be a target for the derision and disgust that rightfully belongs to the entourage that created her. Lest you think me a "leave Britney alone!" type, I think that snark from strangers is the price of fame. I'm not advocating an end to the snark, just a little background info on the target. So that's my bit. I have no idea how good or bad of an idea it is to make personal comments about celebrities to culture bloggers, but I hope this wasn't a really poor decision. I'm sure you could do your research and post a headline saying "JESS A NO-TALENT HACK CONFIRMED BY _________" but that... well, that would just plain suck.

Earlier: 'Cosmo' Cover Girl Jessica Alba: Emotionally Unavailable, Intuitive Creatively Unfulfilled
Jessicas Are All Pretty Bitches



@GingerVitis: yes, she's internationally loathed: salespeople in Toronto and Vancouver phone around to warn each other when she's in town. She may have been a sweet child, but she is a nightmare of a human being right now.