Thursday, July 12, 2012

Thoughts on the End of TomKat

Entertainment news, national news, even some local newscasts have covered the split and divorce of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes.  Why is this couple's split such big news?  Couples get divorced everyday, and rich and famous couples divorce almost as often.  It's a rare thing, an enduring marriage, and the rich and famous have no magic formula for it.  So, why the big news?

First, Tom Cruise made such a BIG deal of dating and falling in love with Katie.  At the time, I felt sorry for her because his behavior created such huge expectations for her in the relationship.  She apparently met them for him.  But his jumping up on Oprah's couch, making Katie Holmes part of his PR junket for the movie he was promoting at the time (a Steven Spielberg movie -- I remember wondering how he felt about the distraction from his work).  Cruise could not have been more vocal about losing his heart to her.  Or more controlling of what was said, and when.  It was all his show.  Katie was only the main supporting player.

Second, that BIG wedding in Italy with a guest list of major stars.  And Suri, their baby daughter.  Cruise definitely pulled out all the stops for this wedding.  By all accounts, they were both ecstatic.  I was astonished by the size and scope of the wedding and the fireworks afterwards.  I couldn't help thinking, this wedding was all about Tom -- his love for Katie, his happiness, his desire to please, and his need to control what would happen. 

Third, they are both stars.  Cruise is worth megamillions and is one of the busiest actors in the movie business.  He wields a lot of power in the industry.  He is particular about his privacy (which makes the first point so interesting).  Holmes is not as big as Cruise but she's also much younger and has a good foundation on which to build her career.  She only needed the freedom to pursue her career without worrying about what impact it would have on Cruise and his career.

Fourth, Cruise is a prominent Scientologist.  This may be the sole point that attracted the news organizations.  Holmes is not a Scientologist and apparently does not want their daughter, Suri, indoctrinated in Scientology as a child.  I wonder if it's true that "one of Tom's Scientology handlers" intervened when Holmes was in the process of disciplining Suri and said that he had to call Tom first.  If it is true, my first question is why would Tom need handlers from the Church of Scientology?  Is this a new trend for established religions?  Next we'll be seeing Catholic handlers or Lutheran handlers or some other religion's handlers following their famous parishioners around.  My second thought was, wow, you do not stand between a mother and her child.  The implication of this tidbit of a story is that Scientology permeated their marriage and their lives in ways that would make any healthy, sane person terribly uncomfortable.

Fifth, the speed of the divorce.  I suspect a well-written pre-nuptial agreement helped things along.  But the word that kept coming up over and over regarding Cruise was "controlling."  Despite (or maybe because of) Holmes' age, maybe Cruise thought it'd be easy to be the one in control in the marriage.  If that was the case, there was no true partnership, and Holmes' individuality was not respected.  There is one thing for certain, Suri has lost her two-parent home now.  And everything regarding the divorce is confidential which I imagine was more for Cruise's sake than Holmes'.

Sixth, as Shakespeare well knew, the common people love to see the hubris, failures, problems, folly and pains of the rich and famous (or royal).

Katie Holmes has showed during the last few weeks, since she filed for divorce, what a class act she truly is, her strength, intelligence and determination.  I admire her for how she accomplished what she did and blindsided Tom Cruise, a man who would find out everything through his handlers and employees, but she kept him completely in the dark.  Well, Cruise totally blindsided Nicole Kidman and hurt her deeply when he divorced her.  What goes around, comes around.....

No comments: