The year has officially started for the Bad Karma Body Count Celebrity Death Pool. Now that the picks are in, and the numbers have been crunched, we have come up with the list of celebrities voted most likely to die in 2014 by BKBC mourners.
Some are terminally ill, others are older than the North Star, and some are in recovery, but apparently folks have little faith it’ll work out for them. Whatever the case, I would hate to be any of these people:
10 Two Tied with 12 picks
Frankie Muniz (b. December 5, 1985)
If Welke* pulls down the highest score in the Doug Stanhope Celebrity Death Pool universe again this year and gets to name another bonus points category, he might want to think about the Billy Squire Bonus Points Category. If we had such a category, Frankie Muniz would be among the front-runners to score the bonus because of his tendency to stroke… stroke. Every November, just like clockwork, Muniz suffers a Mini Stroke. He had his first in 2012, and his second one this past year. The official word is he’s suffering Transient Ischemic Attacks, which are related to losing blood flow to the brain. Will he have another one this November?
Clive James (b. October 7, 1939)
At one point, if you were looking for a drinking buddy who always has enough cigarettes to compensate your I-only-smoke-when-I-drink habit so you don’t have to buy your own, Clive James was your man. The problem with a life of smoking and heavy drinking is generally comes to an ugly end. For James, it’s been a struggle with emphysema and B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia that’s been going on for several years.
9. Zsa Zsa Gabor 13 picks (b. February 6, 1917)
I think February 6, 1917 says it all when it comes to WHY Zsa Zsa Gabor made so many lists this year. She’ll only be worth 3 points, but 3 points might be the difference between winning and losing. Hell, she might even surprise us with a suicide, or some angry home health care worker might smother her with a pillow for some bonus points. She’s had a rough go of things lately. Not only did she get duped by Bernie Madoff for an estimated $10 million, she had a hip replacement in 2010 and had to have a leg amputated the next year because of infection. There are reports she didn’t realize the leg had been amputated until 18 months later. Even the court system says she’ll be dead in three years.
8. Two Tied with 14 picks
Barbara Bush (June 8, 1925)
The former First Lady of the US by way of being the wife of President George H. W. Bush, not the one led the nation down a highway to hell at the behest of Vice President Dick Cheney and bis business partners but his father, was just released from Houston hospital Jan. 4 after spending several days inside with what has been called pneumonia. In the past, she has also been diagnosed with a hardening of her heart, really, she was, and she was diagnosed with Grave’s Disease about the time she became First Lady in 1988.
Billy Graham (b. November 7, 1918)
To be clear here, we are talking about the evangelist Billy Graham, and not Superstar Billy Graham, though the Superstar did land on a few lists as well. Where the Superstar might have entertained the multitudes, the evangelist tried to save their souls. Now, as he nears triple digits in age, Jesus is speaking to him, and calling him home, but so far, he hasn’t taken the hint. At his 95th birthday party, which he attended, he couldn’t even speak to the crowd in person. He prepared a video and played it for everybody. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 1992. It’s hard to tell how long it took his handlers to prop him up and get him to say his lines right. And isn’t it sad to see people singing Happy Birthday to someone this age, or is it just me?
7. Michael Schumacher 15 picks (January 3, 1969)
Formula 1 race car driver Michael Schumacher celebrated his 45th birthday in a coma inside a hospital room thanks to an after-Christmas skiing accident in the French Alps. Schumacher is an international superstar, but since he didn’t get his wins in NASCAR most Americans have no idea who the hell he is. The press has been congregating outside his hospital room ever since the crash as if they expect him to open an window and give a divinely inspired sermon akin to Graham Chapman’s in The Life of Brian. There are mixed reports of how he’s doing, but you can follow it closely online thanks to the Guardian.
6. Kirk Douglas 17 Picks (December 9, 1916)
Spartacus is trying to live forever, but the odds of him doing it are slim to none. Will this be the year Kirk Douglas dies? The old-fart is allegedly still writing pieces for the Huffington Post on a regular basis, and for his 97th birthday he posted what he hoped the world would one day become. He ended it with, “Excuse me — I have a lot of candles to blow out.” Not so fast though. If you read the entire piece, you see he cheated on that candle count. “But have you ever tried to put 97 candles on a cake? You can’t. So I put 10 candles to represent the 10 decades of my life.” The end might be close if he thinks 10 candles is a lot to blow out.
5. Wilko Johnson 19 Picks (b. July 12, 1947)
“I’m supposed to be dead now,” Wilko Johnson said in an interview with The Independent in November. Instead, he’s recording his final album with Roger Daltrey of The Who. Johnson was a pioneering guitarist with Dr. Feelgood, an English rock band that some claim had an influence on the punk scene that soon followed. At the beginning of 2013 he was given 10 months to live because pancreatic cancer was well on its way to killing him. He refused to take chemotherapy treatments, and opted for farewell tour therapy. Everybody, including Johnson, knows the cancer is going to get him, we just don’t know when. He’s already living on borrowed time.
4. Valerie Harper 20 Picks (b. August 22, 1939)
Some might say Valerie Harper is dancing all the way to the grave, or at least halfway there. She was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer last year, and wasn’t sure she would live to see 2014. As she approached the end of the year, she landed a spot on Dancing With the Stars, and danced as well as a 75-year-old woman with brain cancer could dance. As of November, she was still reporting no ill effects from the cancer. “I’m feeling pretty good,” she said. She’s going to be in an upcoming cable tv movie, and even claims her brain scans are improving. It’ll be an interesting ride to see if she makes it to 2015.
3. Fidel Castro 23 Picks (August 13, 1926)
How many revolutionaries who successfully overthrew an established government can you name who have lived to see the age of 87? I can think of one, and that’s Fidel Castro. After that, I’ve got nothing, but I’m not a big world history fan. Fidel stepped down as Cuba’s man in charge in 2006, and handed the reigns to his brother Raul because of chronic illness. He makes very few public appearances these days. In fact, the first public appearance he’s made in nine months occurred just a few days ago. When he stepped down in 2006, he was allegedly suffering a very serious intestinal illness, but since, most reports of failing health are met with his PR machine saying it’s all rumor and conjecture, and Fidel is doing fine. We’ll see.
2. Sam Simon 25 Picks (June 6, 1955)
Sam Simon was instrumental in the development of one of the most popular television shows in history, The Simpsons, and has also had his hands in a dozen other popular shows, and actresses like Jennifer Tilly. In 2012, he was diagnosed with colorectal cancer and has been undergoing chemotherapy ever since. He’s not slowing down though, apparently there is going to be a special on CNN Jan. 17, where he rescues a bear.
— Mikko Alanne (@MikkoAlanne) January 16, 2014
Who knows? He might just live long enough to see 2015, but the people in this death pool aren’t holding much hope.
1. George H. W. Bush 27 Picks (June 12, 1924)
Yeah, that’s right, we’ve got a husband and wife team in the Top Ten this year with George H. W. “Call me Bush One” Bush and his wife Barbara. the elder Former President Bush now gets around in a wheel chair, and every single mention of him in the media includes the line, “’Bush, who is battle health problems.’” Most reports just attribute it to old age, but there could be other issues at work too. The man did appear as a witness at a lesbian wedding in September. Being a conservative Republican, it makes one wonder if he’s losing his mind. He was also hospitalized early last year for bronchitis.
So that’s the list of the celebrities voted most likely to die in 2014.
Who do you think will make it to see 2015?