Fri, Mar 02, 2012 - Page 14 News List

Pop Stop

Compiled by Ian Bartholomew  /  Staff Reporter

Frankie Kao: hair today, gone tomorrow?

Photo: Taipei Times

The soap opera separation between TV entertainer Frankie Kao (高凌風) and his wife Chin Yu-chuang (金友莊) continues with yet another installment in an interminable tango of claims and counter claims. So carefully are the news cues placed, it has become difficult to believe that this whole drama has not all been staged for the benefit of the media.

The latest episode was set up in August last year, with a high-profile announcement that Chin would implement a cooling off period before making their separation official. They said this was out of consideration for older family members and also for their children. The deadline for this cooling off period was Tuesday, which also happened to be Kao’s 62nd birthday.

It is perhaps unsurprising that the marriage contract has been “renewed,” providing ample opportunities for a future split.

To add a sense of occasion, Kao, a veteran of Taiwan’s entertainment industry, flew back from Indonesia with his eldest daughter for a birthday party in Taipei. On his arrival at Taoyuan International Airport, he announced to assembled media that the best birthday present of all would be Chin’s agreement to keep the marriage going.

“After 40 years in the entertainment industry, I’m probably past my peak, and all I want to do is quietly get on with my work,” he said.

But doing things quietly has never really been Frankie’s style. He was jubilant when Chin agreed to “maintain the status quo” (維持現狀), announcing that his hopes had been reborn, and that he considered this to be his 26th birthday party, rather than his 62nd.

Chin, Kao’s third wife, who is 20 years his junior, seemed less than enthusiastic about the arrangement, refusing to even stop off at Kao’s birthday bash.

Storm clouds loom and the media are licking their lips in expectation of further developments.

Kao has been described as an irredeemable chauvinist pig, but Chin has been captured on camera in an intimate association with businessman Chang Chih-chien (張志堅). Neither has much right to any moral high ground, which might be part of the debacle’s appeal for the great unwashed.

In other celebrity news, Yaoyao (瑤瑤, real name Kuo Shu-yao, 郭書瑤), who became famous as a “big-breasted bodacious baby face” (童顏巨乳) after appearing in an advertisement for an online game that made great use of her assets, is experiencing something of a lull in her career.

With increased fame came hot (or rather tepid) gossip about numerous romantic involvements, which is not necessarily a problem if well-managed. But the fact that she may have got back together with her former boyfriend, Liu Chian-chung (劉建忠), seems to be a real downer for celebrity watchers.

Worse still, there have been rumors that she has been looking to dump her current label, Seed Music (種子音樂), and suggestions that it has put her into “cold storage.”

The label has denied any knowledge of the alleged treachery.

In the wake of the death of Taiwanese pop diva Fong Fei-fei (鳳飛飛), there has been much interest in her legacy. Exhibitions, concerts and publications are all in the works, but her most intimate legacy is undoubtedly her son Ben Chao, a boy who she spent considerable effort keeping out of the media limelight. All her efforts came to nought after “a reader” of Next Magazine provided a contemporary photo of Chao to the publication.

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