In case you’re not familiar with Fug Madness — our annual contest which asks, elimination-style, Who Was The Fugliest Of Them All? — then let this FAQ enlighten you, followed by a look at all our winners, runners-up margins of victory, and most importantly, tribute videos set to the cheesiest retrospective tune (and most pernicious earworm) we know: the NCAA March Madness theme “One Shining Moment.”
If you ARE familiar, then you know what this means: Today is the day we’re revealing the seedings, bracket by bracket, until the field of 62 is complete. It’s only 62 because we are actually doing two play-in games this year, which will determine the last two competitors. Those play-in games are Tuesday, March 18, and then regular tournament play begins Thursday, March 20. Seeds are determined by us, taking into account Level of Fame and Quantity of Public Appearances and Quality of Fug, plus a bunch of other random factors. Once we determine the four names at each seed level — all four No. 1s, No. 2s, etc — we then randomize them into each bracket, so we’re not hand-picking matchups here. We’re at the mercy of the machines.
As you know, we eliminated Justin Bieber for this year because, well, there’s something Not Funny about that right now. We call that The Britney Rule, and it’s not hard and fast, nor something that requires overthinking. It’s just gut. Anyone else we’ve included is COMPLETELY eligible — so, you don’t have to make allowances for particular outfits. Yes, Julia Roberts had a rough family issue in February, but her Oscars gown is still legit for fugging (in our view, if you’re at the Oscars, and you’re smiling, and you’re making SUCK IT jokes with Cate Blanchett while La Blanch is accepting her statue, you’re probably okay and we can judge the hell out of that dress).
As for the other cautionary points, here is our basic creed:
1) It’s just fun, not for science;
2) Please don’t get mad if you disagree with the seedings, because of point #1. We do our best and that’s all we can do;
3) The photos we use in each post are NOT the only photos on which to judge; they’re just a sampling. We will provide links to other things, as well, but please feel free to peruse the archives, or the Internet, or Getty, or whatever, if you feel like you need a wider swath before you vote;
4) It all counts: If you are a famous person willing to be seen wearing something in public, whether you’re being paid to perform or you’re just at the grocery store, it counts. We reject the notion that looking cracked-out on stage is a necessary by-product of performing, and we do not excuse what people wear in those situations; we don’t for one second think any of those costumey people don’t also secretly — or unsecretly — think they look cool; can you imagine saying, “Oh, that thing is SO HIDEOUS and UNFLATTERING, so naturally I can’t wait to wear it on-stage at the Grammys”? Not really;
4) Try to vote based on the evidence and not based on how much you hate a person, although we have no way of enforcing that except to send Intern George to your house and order him NOT to hug you under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES and SEE HOW YOU LIKE THAT;
5) We love you all;
6) Thanks for making this fun;
7) We enjoy the debate, but in the end, we encourage you to remember point #1 and try to have fun with the spirited disagreements rather than letting them bum you out.
And now, drum roll… The Cher Bracket for Fug Madness 2014:
(1) MILEY CYRUS vs. (16) MEAGAN GOOD
(2) JENNIFER LAWRENCE vs. (15) JANUARY JONES
(3) GWYNETH PALTROW vs. (14) MADONNA
(4) KAT GRAHAM vs. (13) KRISTEN STEWART
(5) EVA LONGORIA vs. (12) OLIVIA MUNN
(6) JULIA ROBERTS vs. (11) NICOLE SCHERZINGER
(7) DEMI LOVATO vs. (10) SARAH PAULSON
(8) JENNIFER MORRISON vs. (9) NAOMI WATTS
Well, the computer obviously is up on its celebrity gossip, because it matched GOOP vs Madge, a.k.a., a Battle of the Frenemies. The other one to watch here is Nicole Scherzinger, I think, who — if she can beat Julia Roberts — would go on to face the winner of the Gwyneth/Madonna match.