The Anti Will & Grace?
We're so relieved to learn the real story behind the death of one of Carrie Fisher's houseguests on Oscar eve. Today's New York Times story "The Mystery of Hollywood's Dead Republican" by David M. Halbfinger and Dennis McDougal, via LA Observed, elaborates on how R. Gregory Stevens came to expire at Carrie Fisher's house and publishes her first interview on the subject. It appears that Mr. Stevens did die of a drug overdose and La Fisher, who'd been trying to help her friend face his drug problems, didn't notice that he was high that night because his mysterious job kept him constantly jet lagged.We're happy that our admiration for Carrie remains intact, and we're sad because of what the tale says about Southern California.
Steven's bio is the consumate California story. The deceased was a native Southern Californian who came from the rich Republican ranks of San Clemente. He was the consummate beach kid who managed to combine his uncloseted gay lifestyle with his family's conservative values and seemed to use his connections, intelligence and stamina for ends that this LAist can't applaud.
Stevens was a political operative-for-hire who would jet in and out of countries to influence political situations for his client. That's kinda creepy. How many folks thought they were participating in free elections that were actually subject to the manipulations of Stevens and his employers. I'm sure we only heard the good stories.
We're also disappointed that the Los Angeles Times or another local media outlet (Variety anyone?) just let this amazing story slide away. Is it that the journalists here are incompetent, lazy or too afraid?
Sure, Eric Slater's fraternity story at Chico State may have been problematic for the Los Angeles Times yet the energy the paper put into protecting its flanks by invesigating and then pushing the reporter out of the fold could have been used on the Fisher-Stevens (heh) beat.