Finally, Amanda Bynes Gets Herself Sent to the Psycho Ward

“Troubled starlet” is the phrase entertainment-beat reporters typically use to describe celebrity girls who are so crazy they’d be locked up in a nuthouse if they weren’t rich and famous.

Before she went nuts, Amanda Bynes posed for Maxim in 2010.

Before she went nuts, Amanda Bynes posed for Maxim magazine in 2010.

Amanda Bynes started acting crazy last year when she sideswiped a police car in a DUI incident and got her license suspended, then got arrested for driving with a suspended license. The craziness kept increasing until Monday night, when the former Nickelodeon child star was taken into custody in a weird arson incident and was involuntarily hospitalized for psychiatric evaluation. According to TMZ, Amanda used a can of gasoline to start a fire in the driveway of an elderly stranger’s house in her hometown of Thousand Oak, California:

When sheriff’s deputies arrived, they questioned Amanda about what she was doing, and why she was doing it — and based on her answers, they determined she needed to be hospitalized on a 5150 hold. Translation: her answers were really wacky.

Section 5150 of the California Welfare and Institutions Code is a 72-hour commitment based on “probable cause to believe that the person is, as a result of mental disorder, a danger to others, or to himself or herself.”

In other words, troubled starlets.

Where did Amanda Bynes go wrong? Like other troubled starlets before her — notably Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan — Amanda started out as a child star, appearing on the Nickelodeon comedy series All That from the time she was 10 years old in 1996. From 1999-2002, she also had her own Nickelodeon series, The Amanda Show.


At 16, Bynes landed a starring role opposite Jennie Garth on the WB network’s What I Like About You, which ran until 2006. In 2007, she starred in the musical Hairspray, but as she reached her mid-20s, her career stalled. A two-picture deal she signed in 2009 actually resulted in only one movie (the forgettable teen comedy Easy A) and plans for a sequel to Hairspray fell through. And then the craziness started.

In 2010, Bynes used her Twitter account to announce that she was retiring from acting, but a month later said she had changed her mind. In June 2011, she explained to People magazine, “I’ve been acting since I was seven, and I’m 25 now. So, it’s not retiring so much. It’s just taking some time off.” Apparently, “taking some time off” is troubled starlet code for getting crazy, because within a year Bynes started getting arrested for driving accidents. The first was in April 2012 when she was was busted for DUI after her black BMW bumped a police car in West Hollywood at 3 a.m. Amanda reached a civil settlement in December 2012 with some of the victims of her vehicular mishaps, but by then her California license had been suspended so . . .

New York! Bynes moved to Manhattan last fall, saying she was interested in a fashion career. Apparently “fashion career” is trouble starlet code for smoking weed. In May of this year, Bynes was arrested in New York after police responded to reports that she was smoking marijuana in the lobby of her apartment and, allegedly, she threw a bong out the window of her 36th-floor apartment. Or so the cops say, anyway. Bynes took to Twitter to claim it was “all lies” and to accuse the arresting officer of sexually harassing her: “He slapped my vagina. Sexual harassment. Big deal.”

Did we mention that her Twitter account started getting crazy, too? Like, in March, Amanda Tweeted that she wanted the rapper Drake to “murder my vagina” — a request that got re-Tweeted more than 50,000 times.  She ranted on Twitter about her nose job and sent topless photos of herself, shaved her head and started wearing wigs.

Amanda Bynes sent out this self-portrait on her Twitter account.

Amanda Bynes sent out this self-portrait on her Twitter account.

Three weeks ago, Bynes Tweeted: “I Need To Have Surgery To Look Beautiful For The Man I’m In Love With So I Feel Comfortable With The Way I Look When We Get Married,” and then on July 11 she Tweeted: “my life has changed for the better ever since I changed to lower case font.” Later that same day, she Tweeted: “my lawyer will have every fake story about me removed from the internet.” Her last Tweet on July 19 was: “drake is gorgeous.”

Despite her belief in the life-changing power of “lower case font” and her threats of legal action against “fake” stories, the real story was unfortunately simple: Amanda Bynes is crazy — at least crazy enough that she was “involuntarily hospitalized … for a mental evaluation.” What’s that special psychiatric term for troubled starlets? Oh, yeah: Crazy.

UPDATE: Just in case there wasn’t already enough weirdness in this story, TMZ now has surveillance camera video of Amanda Bynes in a liquor store where she apparently went to give her little Pomeranian dog a bath after the arson incident. It seems that Amanda had splashed gasoline on her pet and decided that the sink in an employees-only area in the back room of the liquor store was a good place for a doggie bath.

That idea probably doesn’t make any sense to you, but then again, you’re not a troubled starlet, are you?



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