As much as I want to come off as one of these kind, positive, well-wishing people who is desirous of the best for everyone I’m going to go ahead and admit to being one of those A-holes who secretly delights in the failures of others.
Okay, okay, that’s not entirely true and may have been exaggerated for effect, but I’m not going to lie, occasionally, when I hear of the marriage of a celebrity failing, especially when it’s a couple who goes out of their way to showcase (couch jumping) to the world-at-large (motorcycling into movie premieres) just how in looooove they are/were (public dipping and tonguing), it gives me a small boost of confidence within my own marriage.
Okay, yes. You’re thinking I’m a small-minded doucheburger, but this isn’t a new development so let’s just move on.
The recent divorce announcement of Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise was slightly thrilling not only because the Katie Holmes hostage situation was peacefully resolved (I mean, were we not all wondering what the hell happened to cute little Katie from Dawson’s Creek because just who the hell is this super polished “Kate” person?) but, well, because they (mostly he) pretended to be so couch jumpingly happy all the damn time and I hate that celeb “we are over the moon” crap. Which, Will and Jada, I have my stink-eye on youse as well…
The cancellation of the TomKat reality show got me to thinking about the most infamous marriages in history, celeb or otherwise. Go ahead, check ‘em out so you can feel better about you’re own union. I don’t know about you but just knowing Elizabeth Taylor married the same dude twice or that Kim K’s much touted nuptials only lasted seventy-something days or that Lorena Bobbitt cut off her husband’s penis makes me feel a whole helluva lot better about my own marital bullsh!t. I mean, I may have assaulted a car with a shovel but I very sanely draw the line at maiming vital organs of human beings.
And then there are the murders and suicides…
So, if you’re an A-hole like me, enjoy the ego boost as you take comfort in the marital shenanigans and failures of 24 other couples from history!
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Charles and Diana 1 of 24"There were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded." Princess Diana famously said about her failed marriage to Prince Charles. She was, of course, referring to Camilla Parker Bowles, who is now married to Charles. But Charles wasn't the only one with a wandering eye, Diana is alleged to have had affairs as well. The couple were married in 1981 and famously divorced 15 years later.
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Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley 2 of 24The world was shocked to learn that the daughter of The King of Rock 'n' Roll married the King of Pop. Jackson proposed to Presley after just four months of dating. Child molestation charges against Jackson surfaced at that time but Presley stood by her man, even after they divorced. The couple was married for about 19 months from 1994 - 1996. The most talked about moment of their marriage occurred at the MTV Music Awards, when Jackson surprised Presley by kissing her on camera. It was awkward, to say the least.
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John and Lorena Bobbitt 3 of 24Oh boy. What can you say about these two? The Bobbitts gained worldwide notoriety for an incident in 1993 when Lorena severed John's penis with a knife, drove a short while, then rolled down the car window and threw the penis into a field. She eventually called 911 and a search turned up the penis which was surgically re-attached. It apparently looked good enough for him to start a short-lived porn career. (John Wayne Bobbitt: Uncut and Frankenpenis). She was found not-guilty by reason of insanity. Thankfully, after 6 years of marriage and the penis incident these two crazy kids divorced.
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Joey and Mary Jo Buttafuoco 4 of 24We've seen the story told a thousand ways - in books, newspapers, Lifetime movies, and in television interviews... Who can forget Joey and Mary Jo Buttafucco? His affair with a young Amy Fisher ended with her knocking on his door in 1992 and shooting his wife in the face. Mary Jo was his high school sweetheart. Amazingly, she survived. Even more amazingly she stood by her man, for 11 more years, not filing for divorce until 2003. Fisher, who served 6 years in prison before being paroled, married a much older man (surprise) and has since changed her name to Elizabeth Bellers (her middle name and married surname). Fisher has a career in porn. (Another non-surprise)
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OJ Simpson and Nicole Brown Simpson 5 of 24The unraveling of this seven-year marriage ended in two of the world's most notorious murders. She was murdered at her home in Los Angeles, California, along with her friend Ronald Goldman allegedly by her ex-husband O. J. Simpson. He was arrested and found not guilty of murdering both her and Goldman in a controversial criminal trial. During that trial 911 tapes were played from fights during their marriage where she alleges he beat her. He was later found liable for the deaths in a civil suit brought by the families of the two victims. Ironically, he is now serving thirty-three years' imprisonment for armed robbery and kidnapping relating to a fight over sports memorabilia with a minimum of nine years without parole.
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Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor 6 of 24This superstar couple trumps everyone in that they had two volatile marriages to each other. The couple fell in love while starring in the epic movie Cleopatra. They got married (the first time) just nine days after her divorce from Eddie Fisher (whom she famously stole from Debbie Reynolds). Basically, Taylor was the Angelina Jolie of her day. The first marriage lasted from '64 to '74 - a good run by Hollywood standards. They remarried a year after their divorce and divorced for a second time a year after that. Are you keeping this all straight? Reading gossip mags of the time, the world has assumed that their volatile relationship and Burton's excessive drinking were the main reasons the couple divorced... twice. But they gave it a good try, didn't they? With four marriages under her belt before Burton Taylor went on to marry two more times for a grand total of 8 marriages.
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Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn 7 of 24According to theanneboleynfiles.com, King Henry was banging Anne's big sister first and when the notorious womanizer tired of that he turned his attentions to Anne, the younger sister. He was so smitten with Anne he broke up her engagement to another man. Henry persued Anne and ultimately made her queen of England in 1527. Of course, as soon as he married her he wanted a divorce. He began an affair with another woman and, three years after their marriage, Anne was famously beheaded for crimes she didn't commit. Within 24 hours of Anne Boleyn's death the king married his new conquest, Jane Seymour, Anne's Lady In Waiting. Jane Seymour died just a year later, two weeks after her baby (the king's first son) was born.
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Jerry Lee Lewis and Myra Brown 8 of 24The Killer, as he's called, created one of the biggest scandals of his day when he married his 13-year-old cousin (twice removed). His marriage, better known as The Myra Brown Scandal, occurred in 1957. At that point Jerry, who was 22 at the time, had been married twice and, in fact, was still married to his second wife. Myra was Jerry's third cousin and it's said that she still believed in Santa Claus at the time of her marriage. For a long time Lewis' career was virtually destroyed by the marriage although it's interesting to note Elvis married Priscilla when she was just 14-years-old. Maybe it was the cousin thing that turned off the world? Lewis and Myra had two children and were divorced in December 1970 after 13 years of marriage. Lewis went on to marry three more times for a total of seven marriages.
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Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love 9 of 24Next to Elvis and Priscilla Curt and Courtney had, perhaps, one of rock'n'roll's most infamous marriages. (Sid and Nancy were never married). By most accounts, he met Courtney in 1990 and she pursued him for a while. She found out she was pregnant in 1992 and the couple married in February. The following August the couple's daughter, Frances Bean, was born. The battles between this couple are legendary. Drugs, fights, rehab, their daughter taken away by child services and placed with Courtney's sister... Only two years later Kurt Cobain would be dead. He was found in his Seattle home after shooting himself with a shotgun.
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Warren Jeffs and Everyone 10 of 24Warren Jeffs is the president of a large polygamist sect based mainly in Utah. He is now serving time in prison for two felony counts of child abuse. By some accounts he has as many as 79 wives and nearly 60 children. Jeffs' youngest wife clocks in at 12-years-old. He's now behind bars but his wives are said to be in touch with him still.
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Ike and Tina Turner 11 of 24You know who Tina Turner is but maybe you aren't aware of her ex-husband, Ike. It was a Sonny and Cher kind of thing. Ike was in a band and let a very young Tina (her real name is Anna Mae Bullock) sing on a record. Her singing was so great he decided to form a duo with her and changed her name to Tina Turner because it "sounded good". The couple shot to success. Ike, who was still married, started a relationship with Tina, ultimately marrying her in 1962. By the mid-seventies the couple's popularity declined, Ike was hooked on drugs and famously abusive. In 1976 Tina filed for divorce and left Ike and the band for good. As you're probably aware, she started a successful solo career. Ike Turner died in 2007 at the age of 76.
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Billy Bob Thornton and Angelina Jolie 12 of 24Tattoos, vials of blood, groping their way down red carpets. Yep, that defines the two-year marriage of Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob. After meeting on the set of a movie years earlier the couple married after a couple months of dating in 2000. Billy Bob was dating actress Laura Dern at the time who famously said "I left our home to work on a movie and when I cam home my boyfriend was married." Married and flaunting it all over the world, to be exact. From wearing blood vials to discussing their sex life (she once told Us Weekly "You know when you love someone so much you can almost kill them? I nearly was killed last night, and it was the nicest thing anyone ever said to me." Sadly, the 'almost killing each other' didn't last. The couple separated two years later and divorced in 2003, the year after she adopted Maddox.
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Bobby Brown and Whitney Houston 13 of 24This tumultuous marriage was captured on the short-lived reality show Being Bobby Brown. The couple met in 1989 and married in 1992. In 2006, after 14 years of marriage including several years of drug and alcohol abuse and epic fights, Houston filed for divorce. Many people blame Bobby Brown for introducing Whitney to drugs during their relationship but she denied that while she was alive, telling Oprah she was her own person and other sources have said she tried drugs before meeting Bobby.
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Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson 14 of 24The world's original sex tape stars. The couple whose honeymooon video ignited the sex tape phenomenon that folks like Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton have used to boost their fame. Anderson married Lee in 1995 after only knowing him for a few hours. During their famously volatile union Anderson filed for divorce twice and reconciled twice before finally going through with it for good in 1998. The couple have two sons together.
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Tiger Woods and Elin Nordegren 15 of 24Most of this six year marriage was seemingly average but it sure went out with a bang (or nine or ten, if the girls in the tabloids are all to be believed). It began in November 2009 when, two days after a tabloid reported his affairs, Woods had a bizarre car crash outside his Florida home. Woods was found lying in the street with his wife hovering over him when authorities arrived at the scene. Nordegren told officers she was in the house, heard the crash and "broke the back window with a golf club". Riiight. I smell pissed off wife. Since when do you need to break a window to help someone when a big-ass Escalade rolls over a tiny little fire hydrant? You know the rest of the story... Their divorce was finalized nearly a year later.
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Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn 16 of 24Woody Allen used to be married to one of the sweetest movie stars around. During their twelve year marriage Mia Farrow and Woody Allen adopted several children and had one biological child. The marriage broke up when Farrow discovered Allen was having a sexual relationship with her adopted daughter from a previous marriage. Woody had known the girl since she was 10-years-old. Their sexual relationship began when he was 56 and she was 21. Allen married Soon Yi in 1997 and they've been together ever since. The couple have two children. Woody's biological son with Mia Farrow (who is super cute!) has widely disparaged his dad. On father's day of this year he tweeted "Happy Father's Day - or as they call it in my family, Happy Brother-In-Law Day." ZING!
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Tom Arnold and Roseanne Barr 17 of 24There was a time when this comedic duo owned the cover of the National Enquirer for all their crazy marriage antics. The couple met in the eighties on the stand-up comic circuit. She later brought him onto her sitcom, Roseanne. In 1990, days after her first marriage was finalized, Barr married Arnold. And chaos pretty much ensued. The couple did hard drugs together and fought constantly. This was around the same time Roseanne told PEOPLE she was a survivor of incest at the hands of her dad, a charge she later took back and chalked up to her mental illness at the time. Barr divorced Arnold in 1994 and he famously got A LOT of her earnings thus far in life. The couple still don't get along and their marriage goes down as one of the most contentious in showbiz history.
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Jon and Kate Gosselin 18 of 24What can you say about these two crazy kids that hasn't already been said? Or seen on TV? Got married, had twins, then had sextuplets, starred on reality show, marriage fell apart, after horrible public accusations and mudslinging couple finally divorced in 2009 after ten years of marriage.
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Adolph Hitler and Eva Braun 19 of 24Aren't they sweet? Just your average couple hanging around their living room? Not quite. This is Hilter and his lady love, Eva Braun. I wasn't sure if they were married but they got hitched just 40 hours before they committed suicide together as Allied troops closed in on Hitler's hideout. He was 56, she was 33. The couple met when she was just 17 and worked as an assistant to Hitler's photographer. According to Wikipedia "she attempted suicide twice during their early relationship. (sounds about right for a girlfriend of Hilter). By 1936, she was a part of his household at the Berghof near Berchtesgaden and lived a sheltered life throughout World War II." She didn't attend public events with him until 1944, a year before their deaths.
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Sean Penn and Madonna 20 of 24This doomed couple married in 1985 as he fired a gun at paparazzi helicopters that swarmed overhead. The relationship was marred by violent outbursts against the press, including one incident for which he was arrested for assaulting a photographer and served a month in jail. In 1988 Penn was charged with felony domestic assault for an incident involving Madonna. In the years since many people have alleged he beat her with a baseball bat and, in one case, tied her up in their Malibu home for nine hours and threatened to cut off all her hair. Thankfully, they divorced in 1989 after four years of marriage.
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Bill and Hillary Clinton 21 of 24Who knows what goes on behind closed doors with these two. But they've been together for nearly 40 years. They met at Yale in the early seventies and married in 1975. Their marriage has weathered one of the most notorious scandals in presidential history after his dalliances with White House intern Monica Lewinsky surfaced. But, by most accounts, this couple is still solidly maintainng one of the most infamous marriages in recent American history.
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Britney Spears and Jason Alexander 22 of 24January 3, 2004, Spears married childhood friend Jason Allen Alexander at The Little White Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas. The marriage was annulled 55 hours later, stating that Spears "lacked understanding of her actions". So, while the marriage wasn't necessarily a volatile one it will go down in infamy as one of the quickest marriages ever. She married Kevin Federline six months later so she is one of a few people in the club of folks who can claim they've been married twice in one year.
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Kris Humphries and Kim Kardashian 23 of 24She managed to last longer than Britney but not by much. 72 days. That's how long Kim Kardashian lasted after her multi-million dollar, televised wedding to basketball player Kris Humphries. As you're likely well aware, many still debate the legitimacy of their ill-fated union, speculating that the entire thing was a publicity stunt designed to drum up ratings for the Kardashian reality show. I guess, much like who shot JFK, it will be one of America's much discussed secrets. Or, you know, a Kardashian will write a tell-all in a few years outing Kim.
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Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker 24 of 24Depending on your age you may not recognize this couple but yes, you're right, that is a lot of make up. That's Tammy Faye. Jim and Tammy Faye met and married while in bible college in 1961. He eventually became one of the most famous American televangelists of all-time. You know, a bible thumper who collects money? Yeah, one of those. Turns out he was bilking people out of millions. Not only that but Jessica Hahn, a church secretary, accused Jim of raping her. He denies the claim. He was indicted on fraud in the mid-eighties and sentenced to 45 years in prison. Tammy stood by Bakker through the scandal, including several instances when she famously cried big, drippy, black mascara tears on camera. Ultimately Tammy divorced Jim in 1992 while he was in prison. He was paroled after serving five years of his sentence. She remarried and died from colon cancer in 2007.
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