This morning the Guardian published a Rory Carroll piece about the fall of Johnny Depp. A couple of days ago Carroll asked for a thought or two. The question was “is Depp toast?” Rather than chat I emailed him two or three paragraphs. He included a portion of my remarks in the article but his Guardian editors removed them. Here they are:

“In my book Depp is not irrevocably toast because he could always change his ways (diet, sobriety, workout regimen). But right now he’s kinda toasty due to a combination of (a) that surly drunk video with Amber Heard, and (b) the fact that he simply no longer looks like Classic Depp.

“It sounds cruel to say this, but my first thought when I saw his new louche look was ‘Captain Jack has become Captain Fatass’. I only know that all of a sudden (what was it, 18 months or two years ago?), Depp was suddenly on the pudgy, semi-jowly side, which is what happens when drinkers hit their 50s. Since then he’s ditched some of the bulk but the initial image damage had already been done.

“If Depp had held onto that ripped and lean thing like, say, Ed Harris or Tom Cruise have, he’d be in a much better place. His superstar era would still be waning if not over — all things must pass — but he looks gone to seed, over-indulged, undisciplined. And this fights against that low-key, laid-back, jaded cool cat thing that worked in Depp’s favor for so long.”