I feel like I just can't let the Bonnie McKee Story™ go. It's been too fascinating and uncomfortable to watch someone work this hard to become famous and successful while slipping at the final hurdle each time.

The recent news on Bonnie is that she was dropped from Epic Records a few months ago, her album was never released and it seems like she's no longer trying to sell songs to more famous singers and bands in the hopes that she can keep them for herself for when she finally, you know... makes it.

The encouraging feminist (EF) in me wants to say that 30 isn't too late to be a bubble gum pop star. The realist (R) thinks that that's probably untrue.

EF says that her recent Christmas song is really up-beat and fun... R can't help but think it should've been released a month ago to properly capitalize on Christmas sales.

Both halves agree this video — while technically sort of impressive (it's a single shot with multiple costume changes and a fairly large, if tacky, set) — is depressingly low budget and that maybe this should've been released as a lyrics-only video to distract from that.

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And finally, no part of me will disagree with the statement that if Bonnie wanted to move away from the Katy Perry comparisons, singing a song with "California" in the title where she dresses up as a 50s pin-up with crazy-colored hair was probably not her best move. All in all, as fun as the song is it's like we're getting an extra track from Katy Perry's wildly successful Teenage Dream album. You know, the one that she made 4 years ago.

The biggest issue for Bonnie is one that a lot of people have touched on, though — it's that she undermines the lie of fame, particularly when it comes to female singers: that they have to be "discovered," not already well-connected in the industry. That they need to be meek and withdrawn and forced into the limelight by a benevolent older male figure, not confidently trying to make it on her own with or without a label.

All of the things that should make Bonnie impressive instead make her seem like a desperate fraud.

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That, and her singing voice is a bit shout-y.

Thoughts? Commiserations?