Rising Star: LaToya Jackson
While Victoria Beckham scavenges for face time on American airwaves, LaToya is letting the networks come to her. Following the confirmation that her brother Michael's death was a homicide (as she had surmised from the beginning), the 53-year-old singer is set for an interview on 20/20 this September 11. Might this be the start of a highly televised return to quasi-prominence?
News reports and interviews mark just the beginning of LaToya's next ventures. She's pegged for a two-day co-hosting gig on The View in Elizabeth Hasselbeck's baby-making absence, and she also plans to release her seven-year-delayed album Startin' Over by the end of the year. Say what you will about LaToya's contributions to the musical annals, but she charted two singles on Billboard's Hot Dance Single charts within the past six years without having released an album. She's not exactly Lady Gaga, but she's also not fronting the Psychic Friends Network, lashing out against her parents in Playboy spreads, or making headlines with one of the eeriest, most abusive celebrity marriages of the past 20 years anymore.
There's something to be said for just being recognizable. Considering the glut of current TV stars who started as teen protagonists in '80s cinema, or the amount of magazine covers devoted to sitcom stars of bygone eons who spend their post-millennium days losing weight, LaToya may not be as hopeless as a generation's worth of media once declared. When you can't bank on talent or an iconic family to vault you to the stars, you can always work alchemy out of simple name recognition. Depending on how these TV gigs work out, your 9-year-old niece could recognize her next -- as the "sensible" Jackson.