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Jim Mullen: Too much of anything can get awfully annoying

Posted: August 1, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: August 1, 2012 2:00 a.m.
 

Remember a few years ago when term limits were all the rage? The idea was that every few election cycles, politicians would have to run for a different office or go back home to steal money the old-fashioned way, by lobbying or lawyering.

If term limits are such a good idea for politicians, why aren’t they a good idea for other professions? Why not have term limits for entertainers? Three television sitcoms and, boom, that’s it.

If you were on “Friends” and then were in two TV series that were flops, that’s it. You could make movies, tour in summer stock, make a TV movie of the week or even get a real job, but no more TV sitcoms. That door would be shut to you forever.

It should be against the law for any movie to have more than two sequels. The first three “Star Wars” that were released were fine, but that should have ended it.

Enough! Basta! Fini! We didn’t need the other three. And never again should we have to sit through “Rocky V” (not that anybody did). Still, we shouldn’t even have to hear about it.

Movie stars should be allowed to get divorced only three times. That’s enough; leave some stars and starlets available for the rest of us.

Why anyone would want to be someone’s fourth husband or fifth wife is beyond me. Do you think people get married four times because they are wonderful, well-adjusted people who keep accidentally picking the wrong partner?

If movie and TV stars haven’t worked in the acting business for a few years, they automatically should become normal people once again. No more screaming headlines that read “‘Titanic’ actress killed on safari!” And then you find out that she played the fourth woman in lifeboat No. 6, didn’t have a speaking part and never appeared in another movie.

Recording artists should be allowed only one “Greatest Hits” album. The second compilation would have to be called “Not-So-Greatest Hits.” The third one must be called “My Manager Robbed Me” or “I Wasted All My Money on Cocaine and Booze, So This Is My 401(k).”

Only one or two anniversary celebrations of dubious historic events should be allowed. We need another bogus Woodstock anniversary like we need another missing 10-year-old. The same thing with reality show reunions or “all-star” shows.

There should be a limit on how many times we have to watch the same advertisements. That cute little baby who trades stocks in his crib? The first few hundred times it ran, it was cute. The second thousand times, not so much. Now it reminds me of the kid who kept kicking the back of my seat on the last flight I took.

Is that the purpose of advertising? To make the customer cranky? If you haven’t changed your car insurance to the company with the Cockney lizard or the woman with the fire-engine-red lipstick by now, what is it going to take? Certainly seeing the ad one more time isn’t going to do it.

At some point, advertisers will figure out it would be cheaper to hire mob enforcers to come to your door and threaten to break your legs unless you change your insurance company than to repeatedly run the same ad. Sorry about your legs, but why should the rest of us have to suffer because you’re being so stubborn?

If political pundits think term limits are a good idea for politicians, why aren’t they a good idea for political pundits? Let’s say eight years of political punditing is enough. Then you have to go get a real job. Or run for office.

Jim Mullen’s column runs Wednesdays in The Signal and is copyright by United Feature Syndicate.

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