THEY’RE heeeeeere (said in the girl-from-Poltergeist-type voice). After a couple of years on the fringes of British celebrity culture, the Kardashians have landed on these shores.
If you are acquainted with such a thing as a gossip mag, chances are you will be familiar with these creatures.
For those of you recalling the facially challenged bad guy aliens of Star Trek: The Next Generation, no, they were the Cardassians – different spelling.
In a nutshell, they are an extended American family who make an awful lot of money for the E! television channel through a TV show called Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
A royal family for reality TV, the clan (or should that be klan?): parents mommy-manager Kris and American Olympic hero Bruce Jenner, sisters (in age order) Kourtney, Kim, Khloe, twins Kylie and Kendall and brother Rob, pull in as many as 3m viewers a week in America alone eager to watch them shop, spend and squabble. And boy, can this family squabble.
The late Robert Kardashian – best known for being O.J Simpson’s lawyer – is Kris’s ex-husband and father to Rob and the older three girls, hence the initial interest in the family.
Well that and Kim’s 2007 sex tape. The home movie turned Kim from Paris’ Hilton’s wardrobe organiser (I am not making this up) to household name.
These days 32-year-old Kim is one of the most googled individuals on the planet and reality TV’s highest paid star. She has more than 16m followers on Twitter, was said to have earned $10m from her 72-day marriage to basketball player Kris Humphries (she is now dating hip hop mogul Kanye West), is reported to rake in as much as $30,000 just to tweet about a product and booty-ed out Jennifer Lopez as owner of the world’s most famous bottom.
I could devote an entire column to Kim Kardashian’s posterior but I will get to the point.
Which is that, after taking the US by storm, the Kardashians want our kash.
Following sell-out runs in Sears stores across the US, Kourtney, Kim and Khloe pictured have just launched their Kardashian Kollection fashion range for Dorothy Perkins.
The 100-piece collection is described as “perfect for everyone”. The release gushes: “Kourtney’s bohemian chic can be emulated with floaty drape sleeve blouses and Kim’s red carpet glamour arrives in ‘look at me’ dresses. While Khloé’s edgier dressing sees playful prints and a mix of textures.”
Prices range from to £12 to £75 and early indicators are that it is a hit.
When the girls launched the collection at London’s Westfield shopping centre at the weekend they were mobbed.
I have watched the Kardashians since the early days and have a love-hate relationship with them. They are the worst of our celebrity obsessed culture writ large and, it seems, will sell any bit of their life if the price is right.
But they also work hard – they are not down the mines but this is 2012 – are close-knit and have some quite old fashioned values when it comes to sex, drugs and rock and roll. And they are very funny.
I won’t be rushing out to buy one of their gold body-con bandage dresses but thousands of others will. Thanks to these kash kows I predict a very happy Khristmas for Dotty Ps.