Joan Collins on Piers Morgan’s Life Stories

Following on from last week’s interview with Bruce Forsyth, Piers Morgan puts 80’s superbitch Joan Collins under the spotlight.

I don’t know about your region, but we got a warning before the show about nudity and flash photography. Well, that’ll keep a handful of us watching at least. The nudity, not the flash photography.

Watching this Piers Morgan series, you have to wonder how they’re selecting these guests. Brucie – big in the 80’s, not so much in the 90’s and barely relevant today. Joanie. Lovely woman, but I can honestly say the only time her name has been mentioned in the last decade is in compilation shows like “I Heart The 80’s”. Even Joan snaps at Piers “I am not Alexis, that was 20 years ago!”

Which makes us wonder why the hell she’s being interviewed here.

The interview starts with Piers flattering Joan about his teenage crush on her, which blends into an extended dialogue on her beauty regime and age and wieght management. You know, the important stuff that people want to know about Joan Collins’ life.

What we learn about Joan:

  • She’s British. Funny, I always imagine that accent is put on.
  • Her father didn’t compliment her – even when she was voted the most beautiful girl in England, he said he didn’t think she was that good looking.
  • She was in an abusive relationship with her first husband, Maxwell Reid – she only married him in the first place because she’d slept with him. How old-fashioned. She descibes it as horrible, but says he was never physically abusive, only verbally.
  • She claims to have refused the casting couch – sleeping with producers in order to get movie roles.
  • She acknowledges that Warren Beatty had a voracious sexual appetite. Though she reminds Piers that when they were together, Beatty wasn’t even a star, he was struggling to make his name in Hollywood.
  • Joan fell pregnant to Warren Beatty after getting engaged to him, and had an abortion. She explains that having a baby would have killed her career, and she wouldn’t have had any money to raise the child.
  • She had two children in her second marriage to Tony Newly. She says the marriage broke down due to Newly’s inability to commit. Read: numerous affairs.
  • Apparently her father was the person who suggested that she should strip when offers of work dried up. Even more shocking is the fact that both her kids seem to have watched her nude work.
  • She talks about how her third marriage ended because her husband had a serious drug habit.
  • Joan admits that somebody once forced her to take cocaine.
  • Her current (fifth) husband, Percy Gibson is younger than her son. They’ve been married for eight years and met at one of her book signings in New York.

Piers fwoars and fnars his way through all the parts about Joan’s career, getting terribly steamed up about her nude ‘body’ of work. Brilliantly, she talks about all the people who come up to her and say they had a poster of her as a pin-up. This is exactly what Piers was doing at the top of the show.

But he challenges her claim about being naive about the purpose of the pin-ups. She comes back at him that of course she knew they were being used by men for ‘nefarious purposes’. When he says “I’ve no idea what you’re talking about,” Joan arches an eyebrow and says “Oh…so you never did?” It totally stops him in his tracks. I’ve never seen Morgan so speechless with embarrassment!

Still, he manages to ‘pull off’ quite an interesting interview with Collins, although I fail to understand why now is the optimum time for her to talk about her past. It’s not autobiography season yet.

Where Morgan consistently falls down – and where he needs to improve – is that he seems to rely heavily on tabloid stories about the person in questioning. We didn’t learn much more about Collins than we already knew beyond the key points in her life story. There doesn’t seem to be much more depth that a Wikipedia entry. In fact, Collins says it herself, “Google me”.

And did anyone else think she looked like an older version of Dannii Minogue?

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