Now matter how you spent your Christmas, there’s a decent chance you had a better time that Dustin Diamond did. The former Saved By the Bell star was arrested for a carrying a switchblade and allegedly stabbing someone. It was merely the latest in a number of incidents that have left Diamond as one of the least liked people in show business. Today happens to be Diamond’s 38th birthday, so let’s wish him a not-so-happy special day by looking at all the incidents that have made him so damn unlikable.
First, his appearance on Celebrity Fit Club. Screech’s appearance was the only thing that made the show worth watching. Still, it was hard to watch his scenes without forming the opinion that he’s the biggest jerk on the planet. First, there were his disparaging comments about fellow cast member Kimberley Locke, saying that he would give the American Idol star a free vibrator because “she needs one.” Things got even worse when he threatened to fight both Ant (who hosted the show), and fitness coach Harvey Walden IV, who gave us the memorable line “don’t ever threaten me bitch!” in response.
Diamond would later go on to claim that everything on Celebrity Fit Club was staged, and that he was simply playing the villain. Knowing that reality shows have a tendency to be anything but real, there could be some truth to this, but in the context of his behavior elsewhere, it’s equally likely that he was just being a huge tool, and used that as a convenient excuse.
Of course, before his infamous Fit Club appearance, Diamond had gotten himself back in the news by releasing a sex tape called Screeched: Saved By The Smell. Yes, that was the real title. Of course, he would later claim that it wasn’t actually him in the video and that he used a “stunt wang.” Really, now, I’m not sure what’s more pathetic; self-releasing a sex-tape in the pursuit of publicity, or not even using your own junk in said sex tape. This time around, there was nothing necessarily vindictive about Diamond’s behavior, but it reinforced the notion that he’s a pathetic person who will do anything to get us to pay attention to him.
There may have been no better example of this than his 2009 autobiography Behind The Bell, in which he reveals a number of secrets about the Saved By the Bell cast, namely that every cast member was having sex with each other, except for him. The thing is, every revelation in his book was more damning to himself than to any of his fellow cast members. He came off as bitter and angry, making up for his own disappointments by taking shots at his old co-stars. Nathan Rabin provided the definitive take on this book in his review for The AV Club, in which he details every sad, lonely chapter.
But of course, he had an excuse for that, too. He would go on to claim that the book was penned by a ghostwriter, who took his quotes out of context in order to make the book juicier. As with his claim about Celebrity Fit Club, this isn’t particularly hard to believe. But are you sensing a pattern here? Nothing is ever his fault. Dustin Diamond acts like an ass on a regular basis, and falls back on plausible deniability each time.
Of course, this latest incident may have nothing to do with consistent personality flaws, but it’s quite possible that Diamond’s perpetual existence as a heel has finally caught up to him, leading him to do something far more serious. We don’t know if he’ll serve any jail time for the incident, but if he does, it’s appears unlikely many will miss him.