Hollywood Kids Themes
by Jackie Collins

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Hollywood Kids Themes

(Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction)

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Children will sometimes rise above the low expectations of their parents. All human beings need to achieve something in their own right. These two themes are at the base of Hollywood Kids, a story described by one reviewer as the "sordid lives of celebrity offspring." Collins's Hollywood parents, wealthy celebrities, are self-centered and in many ways determined to keep their children under their thumbs. Perhaps this is self-protection, to keep the children from becoming an embarrassment or competition. The "kids" acquiesce sometimes for no other reason than that they have nothing else to do and no role models to emulate. However, by the time they are in their late twenties or early thirties, they begin to realize they have no life of their own and they strike out for independence. The five offspring Collins shows us eventually make a move to change their lives, and some succeed, even making their parents proud.

That all humans seem to need to make their mark is shown not only in the characters of the "kids," but even in the antagonist, Zane Ricca. A true psychopath with nothing but murder and mayhem on his mind, he is driven by the need to let people know that he indeed was "here," a force to be reckoned with, particularly among those whom he feels wronged him.

Collins explores the concept of being one's own person. Several characters are shown as having so much baggage from their pasts that they cannot see what is possible for them in the future and can barely deal with the present. As events unfold, the characters gain the strength and insight to deal with their problems and ultimately take control of their lives.