Celebrity Tragi-Couples

Rihanna and Chris Brown are not the first...

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    William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet (played here by Leo DiCaprio and Clare Danes in 1996's "Romeo + Juliet") are the archetypal tragi-couple, with their heartbreaking story of unrequited love, family strife, terrible violence, and death. Are celebrities trying to copy these fictitious characters? We would not put it past them.

    20th Century Fox
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    Rihanna and Chris Brown's alleged physical altercation in a rented Lamborghini this weekend has put them on the fast track to celebrity tragi-coupledom. We'll see if they can pull it out, or if its a downward spiral from the 2009 Grammys.

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    Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love's tragi-couple destiny was sealed when the Nirvana lead singer blew his brains out on April 5, 1994, the same day Love's second album, Live Through This, was released. Yikes.

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    Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen were the king and queen of punk rock in the late 1970s. Neither made it to the 1980s, with Nancy murdered, Sid charged with her murder, and then Sid found dead of a heroin overdose.

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    Tina Turner said her husband Ike beat her in the 1960s and 70s when they were one of the biggest rock/soul groups around. She got the last laugh when she left him and became an international pop superstar all on he own.

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    Lindsay Lohan and Samantha Ronson's constant screaming matches have made them 2009's tragi-couple in waiting.

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    Diane Lane and Josh Brolin had a tragi-couple brush in 2004 when Lane called the police after an altercation with Brolin and he was arrested on a domestic battery charge. Lane declined to press charges, and the couple is still together today, proof that tragi-couples can survive.

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    Tommy Lee and Pam Anderson have been married twice and break up and get back together more than any celebrity couple still talking to each other. That we care, though, is the tragic aspect of this couple.

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    Whitney Houston could not get enough of bad boy Bobby Brown, returning to her hubby's side again ad again after his multiple arrests and incarcerations. After many trips to rehab, Houston finally divorced Brown in 2006 and got custody of their daughter. We hope she's okay, but her appearance at the Grammys leaves some doubt.

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    Amy Winehouse and Blake Civil-Fielder were 2008's worst tragi-couple, with Winehouse spinning out of control on drugs, crying that she would die while Blake was in jail, as Blake admitted to introducing her to crack cocaine. Oh my.

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    Ralph Kramden threatened his wife Alice with physical violence on a weekly basis, and on live TV no less. Will the horrors never end?