Linda Tripp's Makeover

It's being covered as a publicity ploy by a Lewinsky scandal leftover — that is, not much and certainly not seriously. But check out the pictures. This is a MAJOR makeover. It represents the culmination of a process we have been tracking for awhile — but in two different arenas of celebrity, the real and the Hollywood.

Remember the new Nixon? Distant ancestor of Al Gore remakes and of McCain and Bradley, the "story" candidates, and every prominent real life figure today who is now obliged to play some version of themselves. On the other front, we have cases of performer resurrections in new guises going back to the straightforward comebacks of Frank Sinatra and John Travolta to Madonna and Michael Jackson makeovers to Garth Brooks effort to recreate himself as a fictional celebrity whose name escapes me at the moment.

Linda Tripp's makeover represents a consolidation, a fusion of these trends. This marks a moment when the possibility of making and remaking one's image collapses into the possibility of making and remaking oneself literally.

And it's just the beginning...