Transits of Pluto and The Tragic Death of Natasha Richardson


Today I wish to study some of the advanced techniques for analysing the transits of Pluto in a situation that ended in tragedy. This article will cover in detail the untimely and tragic death of Natasha Richardson, wife of actor Liam Neeson. Her full obituary can be read on the Times Online website. According to a March 18th  Times report:

The actor Liam Neeson said tonight that he was shocked and devastated by the death of his wife, Natasha Richardson, at a New York hospital after a skiing accident.

Richardson, 45, was reported brain-dead after a fall during a skiing lesson in Canada on Monday from which she was initially able to walk away. She was flown by private jet to New York from Montreal on Tuesday, wrapped in blankets with tubes covering her face, and taken to Lenox Hill Hospital. Yesterday, as the famous acting clan gathered by her bedside, it was reported that she had been taken off life support.

More details quickly emerged about the accident which led to her death:

A paramedic, who rushed his team to the ski hill for Richardson, said his team were told by emergency workers that they were not needed. Yves Coderre, director of Ambulances Radisson, told the Globe and Mail newspaper, “They (his team) never saw the patient. So they turned around.”

After her tumble on the ski trail, the actress had reportedly felt fine and even joked about it with her instructor. But an hour later she had to be rushed to a hospital near Montreal after complaining of a severe headache.

This could have been the fatal mistake, said Coderre, who has 23 years of experience as a paramedic. He said victims of head trauma often make the potentially fatal mistake of believing they are fine.

“When you have a head trauma you can bleed. It can deteriorate in a few hours or a few days.

“People don’t realise it can be very serious. We warn them they can die and sometimes they start to laugh. They don’t take it seriously,” the newspaper quoted him as saying.

This – thankfully rare – phenomenon is known as a lucid interval, or more commonly “talk and die syndrome”, which describes a delayed onset complication of head trauma whereby the patient feels fine after a head injury but becomes suddenly ill at a later point. In Natasha’s case, the official cause of death was cited as epidural haematoma; however, experts believe that the probable cause of the haematoma itself was a kind of whiplash injury where the brain rotated causing a tear in the frontal lobe. There is considerable speculation that, had the injury been identified in a timely fashion, then she may well have survived the trauma.

It is undoubtedly an awful and heartbreaking story. How did it ever happen?

Astrologically there are always a vast array of factors and influences which could be considered, but in every case we need to consider the radix nativity first and then look at the various transits and directions that might mitigate or exacerbate any pre-existing natal conditions. The key observation here is that a transit cannot create a reality that is not already described in the nativity as a possibility. A person with a strong and favourably aspected Mars is extremely unlikely therefore to die as a result of an accident of this type. Let us consider Natasha’s nativity as a starting point therefore:

Natasha Richardson, actress. 11 May 1963 17:00 (BST -1:00) London, England

Natasha Richardson, actress. 11 May 1963 17:00 (BST -1:00) London, England

This is a profoundly interesting astrology evincing a kite to Saturn, tee-squares to Sun and Mars (hinting at a grand-cross of Sun, Mars, Neptune and Saturn) a Yod to NN,  a golden Yod to peregrine Jupiter and, crucially, a peregrine Pluto as well. This latter factor is a red-flag for a potentially life-threatening  difficulty and I have discussed the pitfalls of the placement in a previous article: On the Peregrination of Pluto and Other Such Tragedies. Condensed into a distilled insight, the peregrination of Pluto demands a stark choice: either to manifest the enormous life and death powers of the plutocrat, or alternatively, to die in some sudden and unequivocal manner. This is not a foregone conclusion by any means, but Plutonic themes do tend to abound for those with Lord Hades in peregrine: wealth, death, power and control, secrets and tragedy are all writ large on the life-stories of these natives. A conscious awareness of the Plutonian impulse is the only defence against his manifold compulsion.

Natasha was of course the progeny of one of Britain’s most powerful acting dynasties. She was wealthy in her own right, was married to Liam Neeson, a powerful and wealthy man and her father, Tony Richardson died after admitting he was bisexual once he contracted Aids, a disease which eventually caused his death in 1991. Her mother, Vanessa Redgrave is frequently hailed as being the greatest actress of her generation. That is quite a legacy of wealth and power; 8th house themes abound in her life and indeed are reflected, not only in the peregrination of Pluto, but also by the severely stressed Sun and Mercury in the 8th. Sun  squares Mars and Neptune, which neatly encapsulates the sexual ambiguity of her father and at the same time the manner of his demise; and it is no coincidence whatever that this also describes a fundamental quality of her end too, as we shall soon discover.

What factors then relate to her death? Astrology alone posits a great many intriguing factors. We have begun with the understanding that peregrine Pluto creates a distinct possibility of a rather tragic end, but this alone is not enough. Sun in the 8th and so profoundly stressed from Mars and Neptune becomes extremely intriguing because this blends accidents, falls and cuts with confusion, mistakes and misdiagnosis into a single potential. This exact principle led directly and unerringly to the death of Andy Warhol through a mistake (Neptune) in the quantity of fluid (also Neptune) that he was administered after surgery. Warhol’s nativity also evinced a fixed Mars-Neptune square (from Taurus to Leo) and I discussed this intriguing case also in a previous article: The 8th House: A Good Death?

Clearly in Natasha’s case, a misdiagnosis (Neptune) was in evidence after a fall (Mars). By Ebertin, the biological correspondence for Mars – Neptune is “the discharge of pus”, but of course Neptune rules any fluid, so the discharge of fluid in general is implicated and it does appear to describe the possibility of haematoma quite succinctly. With Mercury in the 8th and square Uranus there is the potential for a sudden (Ur) demise (VIII) whilst in motion (Me) as well.

So, we understand therefore just a few of the difficult potentials of this astrology. Whilst nothing is written in stone, what should be clear is that under the most stressful of transits and directions, these potentials might well be tragically realised.

The probable timing of Natasha's fall: 16 March 2009 1pm (4 hours before her admission into hospital), Mont Tremblant, Canada.

The probable timing of Natasha's fall: 16 March 2009 1pm (4 hours before her admission into hospital), Mont Tremblant, Canada.

Here there are a number of identifiable culprits, but most pressing in my view are the placements of Venus and Neptune. Venus in Natasha’s nativity is the ruler of the Ascendant and the 8th house and at the time of her accident, Venus was at 13 Aries, the degree for the frontal lobe of the brain; the specific site of the injury which caused her death. Furthermore, Neptune was opposing the Mars – Uranus midpoint of Natasha’s radix chart (applying to less than 9 minutes of arc!), which by Ebertin denotes “an injury causing the loss of blood. Thus the loss of blood (Ma/Ur) from the frontal lobe (Ve): the combination reinforces the suggestion of haematoma which is incipient in the natal configurations.

And yet even this might not be enough to cause death. However, we must look to Pluto, peregrinated in Natasha’s nativity to have the final word. I have attempted to delineate the crucial transits of Pluto in a diagram thus:

Pluto's applications to crucial halfsums at the time of the accident.

Pluto's applications to crucial halfsums at the time of the accident.

Here then is Pluto at 3 degrees of Capricorn forming a square to the midpoint of Mars – Neptune (marked in green) and a sesquiquadrate to the midpoint of Sun – Neptune. The latter application to the Sun – Neptune halfsum was partile within half a day of the accident, which considering the speed at which Pluto transits, is infinitesimally precise.

NR_transitsThe full array of Pluto’s transits at this time are stark indeed, with the most powerful being Pl = Su/Ne: “affliction through emotional or physical suffering, a tragic deception or illusion” within hours of the accident occurring. This difficult transit occurs as Pluto transits the Mars – Neptune halfsum throughout the beginning of 2009: “The tendency to cause damage to others brutally or to suffer likewise: death.” Finally then a narrative can be gleaned from all these portents and potentials.

  1. Pluto peregrine: the potential for a tragic demise.
  2. Venus, ruler of the 8th, transits to the degree corresponding to the brain’s frontal lobes.
  3. Neptune = Ma/Ur: injuries causing loss of blood.
  4. Pluto = Su/Ne: a tragic illusion (misdiagnosis) of the injury.
  5. Pluto = Ma/Ne: suffering damage, death.

In the final analysis, the question ought to be asked: could this accident have been foreseen and therefore prevented? I would say it is possible, but unlikely, it would take uncanny skill and exhaustive attention to the multidimensional implications of future trends. On the other hand, anyone with a Mars Neptune square and a peregrine Pluto ought to be well advised to be very thorough about checking and double-checking any medical condition or diagnosis, especially where accidents, cuts, falls or the like are implicated. A little caution in these cases might go a very long way indeed.

Less scary insights are available to all through my consultation service at Astrology Hour.


Transits of Pluto: Kill or Cure…


It’s absolutely no coincidence that Ben Franklin’s famous line “in this world nothing is certain but death and taxes” speaks specifically to eighth house matters. Both death and taxes are ruled by Pluto, and to that list, I’d like to make an addition: in this world, nothing is certain but death, taxes and the hard transits of Pluto.”

Mel Gibson ought to be able to attest to that reality because for today’s article I will use his recent history to provide an insight into the reliability of this process and furthermore to echo the underpinning maxim of my previous article: you cannot weigh the Plutonic effect except within the context of the radix nativity. My intention is then to look at a few of the possible repercussions of those Pluto transits which will make themselves felt in the next few years of his life.

This will necessarily be a rather pared down exploration. However, it is a process with which I am extremely familiar as I have used it for several of my clients to very positive effect, although in considerably more depth than this article will allow.

First then, to some ground-rules:

  1. Pluto transits will always take on the ambience of his radix position by sign and house and will further activate any natal aspects, particularly those to personal planets. Thus if you have Mars configured to Pluto, the transits, progressions and directions involving the Lord Hades will inevitably intimate a Martian quality. If you have Pluto in Virgo then transits will throw up Virgoan, 6th house themes: health, simplicity, service, the fine detail of things and your day to day habits and working life.
  2. Remember too that Pluto kills and then is reborn, so his transits will inevitably reflect this quality also. This tends to mimic, albeit serendipitously, the rule of retrogradation which states that the 3 passes of an outer planet (direct-retrograde-direct) contain a fairly consistent quality of process: shock – acceptance – gift. This is my rule though, so you can disbelieve at your discretion (and peril). Pluto transits echo this exact quality: death of the old form (often violent) – a period of adjustment and mourning – birth of the new form (invariably better than what went before). Of course, Pluto very often makes 5 passes to a point so the process is a little stretched, but the general methodology remains consistent.
  3. Aspect styles do matter. Trines are not necessarily easier to experience than squares. The necessity however, for change, is usually felt more keenly so there is less resistance. The conjunction, opposition and square are invariably felt to be more distressing than the so-called easy aspects, but this does not mean that they should be in any way discounted. On the other hand, a hard aspect from Pluto transiting will be a major deal, regardless of any other factor.
  4. Even more pertinent is the transit of Pluto to one of the 4 angles. I have meditated on this considerably. If Pluto is crossing the Descendant then in truth he is opposing the Ascendant and that is the pertinent observation. The Pluto transit therefore opposes the self, it challenges one to defend one’s entire way of being through the interactions of others because when we are alone in the world we can behave exactly as we wish (Asc), but we will find our exposition of self challenged as soon as others come into play (Dsc.) What this relates then is that it is the aspect to the Ascendant and the Medium Coeli which is relevant. A square of Pluto to the MC will therefore be only marginally less profound than a transit of the IC. Pity those then whose Ascendant is exactly square their Midheaven!
  5. Solar Arcs outweigh mundane transits by a factor of ten to one. If you see a Solar Arc aspect of Pluto to the angles (especially a conjunction to the Asc or MC) then sit up and take serious notice.
  6. Similarly, aspects to midpoints are also profoundly insightful, and in many ways translate more directly into events where transits to single points often reflect more general psychological themes that manifest into events. This might appear obscure but when you look at your own transits in this light you will quickly catch the drift. Don McBroom has written an excellent treatise on midpoint theory which (essentially) espouses the philosophy that a midpoint picture can be decoded through the insight that the quality of the intersecting body is realised through the blend of the bisecting bodies. Thus, Moon = Mars/Jupiter might be understood as “security is realised through enterprise.” Similarly, birth might be suggested as a specific transiting event since the sexual principle of Mars is made fruitful by Jupiter and realised through a female, represented by the Moon.

There are many other factors to consider, but these provide an excellent lexicon from which we can create our outline narrative. By far the easiest approach here will be to use the example of Mel Gibson’s recent life and times to illustrate the methodology. In order to understand therefore we must make reference not only to his Pluto transits, but also to his radix nativity thus:


Mel Gibson: 3 Jan 1956, Peekskill NY, USA 16:45 (+5:00)

Looking at Mel’s chart you might begin to wonder why he’s famous at all. The answer lies in the Moon, ruler of the Ascendant, on the Aries point of Libra to the absolute minute! The Solar peregrination is undoubtedly intriguing and it inevitably creates interest in Mel’s father, Hutton Gibson, who has to date 48 grandchildren and is a dyed in the wool Catholic. Hutton once stated that:

The greatest benefit anyone can have is to be a Catholic. You have the lifelong satisfaction of being right. But we can’t go to Mass, there are no sacraments and I feel cheated.

Hutton is a conspiracy theorist who believes that the Second Vatican Council introduced explicitly heretical and forbidden doctrines into the Roman Catholic Church in order to destroy it from within, and he holds that every pope elected since John XXIII, inclusively, has been an anti-pope or illegitimate claimant to the papacy.

The sign of Capricorn is indeed ultraconservative, and here the Sun is ruled by Saturn who is himself squared to Pluto, an aspect which is profoundly and unbendingly dogmatic. Sun is also semisquare Saturn and sesquisquare Pluto, tying the Saturn-Pluto square into a direct configuration with the father figure in Mel’s life. When you consider that Uranus, ruled by the Sun in turn rules the 9th and is opposed by Mercury, ruler of the 4th, you can easily see that there is a great deal of unfinished business in the early home life which specifically relates to his relationship with his father.

Venus too of course is peregrine and in the 8th, which is probably rather bad news for his impending divorce, most especially when you consider that Venus is quindecile Pluto and ruled by Uranus opposed to Mercury and both square to Neptune, but we will discuss this in context a little later on.

timelineHere then are Mel’s major transits of Pluto from the end of 2005 for a period of ten years. I hope to be able to predict with some accuracy the trends which will manifest out into his life from these initial conditions. Of course, it ought to be possible to create a much more detailed picture by including Secondary Progressions of the Sun and Moon, the Solar Returns for each of the years in question and of course major transits and arcs of Saturn, Uranus and Neptune too as well as Solar Arc Directions of all the planets, especially where they make contacts to the angles. For the purpose of this discussion however, it will be easy to demonstrate how accurately the broad strokes can be gleaned from transits of Pluto alone.

It is worth considering this just a little philosophically before we continue too much further. In my experience, no planet’s effects are ever quite so clearly delineated in the life circumstances as are Pluto’s, and it ought to be clear why this is so. Pluto is the most unconscious and compulsive of all the planets, so it is intriguing to note that Pluto transits will be conspicuous in inverse proportion to the level of compassionate evolvement and self-awareness of the individual in question. This is not as overtly disparaging as it sounds upon first inspection: an individual with Pluto making no hard aspects from the 9th house will not be nearly as under the cosh as another person – like Mel – with a Mars – Saturn conjunction squaring Pluto; quite possibly the most difficult of all possible Plutonic combinations. Put simply, Mel has much more Plutonic material to work through than the vast majority, so we should not look upon this as a fault or failing; more a cause for sympathy or at least, understanding.

On December 17th 2005 then, Pluto squared his Midheaven from the 6th house and Sagittarius. Let us consider all the various factors at play in this transit therefore:

  1. Tr. Pluto is in the 6th, so his daily habits will be exposed.
  2. Na. Pluto is in the third, so transport and communication will be configured.
  3. The MC is ruled by Neptune, so religious beliefs and drugs or alcohol are brought into play.
  4. Neptune is tee squared by Mercury opposition Uranus, thus sudden vocal outbursts are possible.

On July 28, 2006, at 2:36am PDT, Gibson was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol after being stopped for speeding on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, California. A breathalyser test measured Gibson’s blood-alcohol level as “0.12%” (the state’s legal limit is 0.08%), and next to him was an open container of “Cazadores Tequila,” 750ml at 75% full. Gibson was described by the arresting officer James Mee as cooperative until arrested, at which point he became belligerent and experienced mood swings. While handcuffed in the car, Gibson made anti-Semitic remarks to Mee, who is Jewish. Gibson was released on bail at 9 am PDT. The next day Gibson confessed to driving under the influence and to “despicable” behaviour during his arrest, and a frenzy of media coverage followed.

At the time of his arrest, Pluto was by far the closest transiting aspect, in square to Midheaven.

At the time of his arrest, Pluto was by far the closest transiting aspect, in square to Midheaven.

Thus with Pluto less than 4 minutes from partile square with Midheaven (The likelihood of sudden ruin through misuse of power, a crisis at a certain juncture in life [Ebertin, The CSI 1972]) Gibson was arrested (na Sa sq. Pl), for driving (na. Pl in 3rd) under the influence (MC ruled by tee-sq. Ne.); an event which will probably be better remembered for his inappropriate outburst (Me opp. Ur forming the spine of the Ne. tee-sq.). Transiting Uranus was also in the 9th (unorthodox religious views or fanaticism) and at the midpoint of natal Moon and Pluto: again, fanaticism, the desire to fight, and sudden upsets and in quindecile to both Moon and Pluto simultaneously, creating both obsession and compulsion around religious themes.

The sheer number of correspondences is exhaustive, but I must move forward.

Mel’s wife of nearly 30 years, Robyn Gibson filed for divorce on April 13, 2009, citing irreconcilable differences. Gibson’s representative announced in May 2009 that Gibson and his girlfriend, Russian-born musician Oksana Grigorieva, are expecting their first child some time in the fall. It is likely therefore that their child will have been conceived just as Pluto was applying to the Venus-Mars midpoint; one of the most important midpoints in all astrology for predicting major relationship trends. By Ebertin, the transit of Pluto here signifies “a very strong sex life” and “an unusual power of procreation.” Mel’s sexual urges are being supercharged at this time by another major Pluto transit and once again, when you consider that natally Venus is quindecile Pluto, then there seems little doubt that his sexual compulsions will be especially strong at this time; and with Venus in Aquarius, it is unusual women who are fuelling his fire. He will probably marry Olga close to one of these transits. Unfortunately for Mel, the next round of Pluto transits do not exactly favour his new amorous union.

I would say that almost certainly, this relationship will come to an end in 2011. The transit of Pluto across the Venus-Saturn midpoint is extremely unfavourable to the long-term success of their relationship. Alone, this creates unusually strong tension in love-relationship, but on the 15 February transiting Neptune also opposes natal Pluto, which promotes the pursuit of fantastic ideas, self-torment, manias and a craving for alcohol. Mel will undoubtedly throw himself into his work and turn his professional life around; the combination of an interconnected series of transits to the Mars-Jupiter midpoint and his peregrine Sun will undoubtedly spur him to tackling an enormously ambitious project which will fill his days with activity thus distracting from his relationship woes, although it is entirely possible that he will also lose his father at this time as well.

Mel and Olga will probably split as Pluto transits his descendant; but such an outcome is not absolutely assured, Pluto after all is kill or cure. If his new marriage survives this transit then it may stand the test of time, but without considerable transformative work having been realised in the interim, I would imagine this to be unlikely, especially since Jupiter squares Uranus by Solar Arc and this creates an enormous impetus to get oneself free of a stifling situation and taste freedom once more.

There is very much more that could be said here, however, I do believe that this gives a good feeling of the narrative that can be constructed from the transits of Pluto. I am able to offer a more detailed narrative of this type through Astrology Hour, if you are interested in discovering what the future may hold for you in this manner.

In my next article, I aim to use another example of this type to underline the methodologies and techniques employed here.

Pluto through the signs: what’s your obsession?


Today, I wanted to make a study of the various effects experienced under the transits of Pluto, but I would like to make a few remarks before I attempt that article about the particular ambience of Pluto in the signs, from Cancer through to the present time. The two themes cannot be treated entirely separately, a Pluto transit will inevitably take on the character of its natal expression and we ought always to consider it in this way. For this reason I will begin with an analysis of Pluto’s various manifestations through the signs.

I have written about outer planet transits before, specifically in relation to their purpose in the ongoing process of soul-purification. This is the existential expression of Plutonic pressure in the arc of a human life. You may wish to read that article before proceeding here.

Bernard Manning: Pluto in Cancer and felt the word "wog" was "a horrible, insulting word I've never used in my life" but defended use of the words "nigger" and "coon" as historical terms with respectable roots.

Bernard Manning: with Pluto in Cancer he claimed that "wog" was "a horrible, insulting word I've never used in my life" but defended use of the words "nigger" and "coon" as historical terms with respectable roots.

Thus, Pluto in Cancer (1914-1939) creates a focus on traditional, territorial and inherited values. It contains the essence of the Moon-Pluto contact but writ large across an entire generation. Pluto made his first serious foray into the sign of Cancer on June 27th 1914 and within a month Franz Ferdinand was dead and the first world war had effectively begun. Pluto’s final days in that sign occurred in June 1939, just 3 months before the start of the second world war. Cancer of course rules the homeland, those inherited clannish values of belonging, of our family, our home, our country and our heritage, so inevitably, the extreme nationalism, indeed jingoism of the period was a direct manifestation of these lunar and 4th house qualities negatively supercharged by the Lord Hades. Consider all the many innovations related to domestic science: the refrigerator was invented during this period which created a death and rebirth of family values: Pluto very often creates this dichotomy, the labour-saving innovations of this time actually freed women from the home and the drudgery of the kitchen which in itself sounded the death-knell for the old order of traditional tribal gender roles. It is this falling away of an outdated paradigm which is required to be taken up by the subsequent generation thus Pluto in Leo was required to redefine the role of women in society, but crucially, they inherited this necessity, even if they would actually like to claim it as their doing.

Obsessed with: Tradition, family, the home country.
Responsible for:
the refrigerator, the BNP, the KKK and women’s lib.
At best: thrifty and supportive.
At worst: racist and cranky.

Janice Dickinson: this is how Pluto in Leo wants to look: age 55!

Janice Dickinson: this is how Pluto in Leo wants to look: age 55!

Pluto in Leo (1939-1958) has problems all its own – every Hadean generation does without doubt – and here the themes of the Sun and the 5th house are given especial focus. Status, egotism, self-centredness and pride are the most difficult facets of these years and the broadly narcissistic focus of Leo is given a difficult dose of Plutonic force. The characteristics of this generation are more in keeping with the 5th house and solar principles: being the centre of attention, enjoying life, music (Elvis was 3 when Pluto crossed into Leo), rock and roll lifestyles became the order of the day and the need to be loved because one is a person of importance in the world; this is the royal persona writ large. More difficultly, there is the underlying quality of Sun-Pluto to consider which is the classic indication of megalomania. Hitler’s blitzkrieg was unleashed on Poland within 3 months of Pluto crossing into Leo and his attempt to manifest a glorious Germanic empire, a third Reich (kingdom), echoed the dreams of dominion of the European kings of old. Consider too that when the Pluto in Leo generation was at its zenith it voted an actor into the White House and a woman (newly liberated by Pluto in Cancer) with a Sun – Pluto square into Downing Street. This generation has been dubbed the “Me Generation” and they created the phenomenon of personal psychotherapy to feed the great appetite of their own self-interest. Leo is also the sign of the child, and this for me strikes to the core of the Pluto in Leo condition. Here is a generation that didn’t want to grow old (plastic surgery is their invention too), who wanted to remain eternally youthful which fundamentally shifted the attitude to childhood. In the same way that Pluto in Cancer ‘killed’ the role of women in the home, requiring it to be redefined by the next generation, Pluto in Leo killed the role of the child. Pluto in Leo, needing to be the centre of attention the whole time, raised an entire generation of children that felt they did not matter, that was forced to play second-fiddle to their dramatic, showy, self-obsessed Mum or Dad. The result? A generation of parents who are determined to let their children be the centre of attention and who have subsequently made out of their children’s early lives a fiercely idealistic and protected idyll, where their little ones cannot be exposed to any manner of hardship, unpleasantness or harsh reality. Pluto in Virgo then has been tasked with recreating childhood, and they have done it in a typically Virgoan manner: for the children of this generation, everything must be perfect.
Obsessed with: status, appearances and youth.
Favourite things: Hair-dos, sports cars, diamonds and sunbathing.
Responsible for: plastic surgery, psychotherapy, rock n’ roll, Hollywood and the stock market.
At best: warm and generous.
At worst: self-obsessed and hysterical.

Johnny Depp has apparently become a health freak. The Sweeney Todd star - once famous for his wild, hard partying lifestyle - is shooting a new movie in Vancouver where he has requested his trailer be equipped with a treadmill, weights and a stability ball, according to Star magazine. The 44-year-old father-of-two also reportedly asked for his fridge to be stocked with blueberries, strawberries, pineapple, kiwi and soy milk. Johnny is also said to have requested throughly cooked chicken, tuna in water and hard boiled eggs to snack on during filming. It seems that a source told the celebrity magazine: "No wonder he looks so good for his age." Johnny is filming Michael Mann's new movie Public Enemies, alongside Christian Bale, Channing Tatum and Oscar-winning French actress Marion Cotillard. The gangster movie is set in the 1930s and Johnny plays notorious criminal John Dillinger.

Johnny Depp - poster boy for Pluto in Virgo has apparently become a health freak. The Sweeney Todd star - once famous for his wild, hard partying lifestyle - is shooting a new movie in Vancouver where he has requested his trailer be equipped with a treadmill, weights and a stability ball, according to Star magazine. The 44-year-old father-of-two also reportedly asked for his fridge to be stocked with blueberries, strawberries, pineapple, kiwi and soy milk. Johnny is also said to have requested thoroughly cooked chicken, tuna in water and hard boiled eggs to snack on during filming. It seems that a source told the celebrity magazine: "No wonder he looks so good for his age." Johnny is filming Michael Mann's new movie Public Enemies.

So, what of Pluto in Virgo? This generation (1959-1972) has struggled to emerge from the great fixity of its forbears, and with parents demanding to be in the spotlight until their last breath, it is no surprise; an unhappy collusion which is simply exacerbated by the Virgoan’s regard for the qualities of simplicity, modesty and humility. This generation – possibly in part due to the perceived selfishness and narcissism of the generation that has gone before has learned to abhor self-promotion and ostentation. Even the great celebrities and rock-stars of this generation cannot get away with the over-the-top hotel trashings of those of previous decades; such behaviour is deemed to be rather embarrassingly brash and brassy. If Pluto in Virgo does have a vice, it is intellectual hubris, albeit one that manifests as a fierce propensity to pedantry and criticism. This generation loves nothing more than to deconstruct, and witheringly, the perceived flaws of those who raise themselves up onto a pedestal; the fascination with celebrity culture with all its attendant vicarious and voyeuristic sneering is a direct consequence of this Plutonic pressure across the generation. Even more direct is this placement’s obsession with work: Pluto in Virgo works all hours and struggles to maintain any sort of balance between home and career: and weekends are invariably spent mowing the lawns, polishing the car and pressure-washing the patio, so-called leisure activities which to every other generation seem more akin to drudgery than relaxation. It might well be that Pluto in Virgo turns out to be the generation that kills work, in the same way that Pluto in Cancer killed the family and Pluto in Leo bumped off childhood. Pluto in Libra will no doubt be required to reinvent the concept of employment in years to come as a result.
Obsessed with: health, work and being clever.
Favourite things: Health and fitness clubs, reality TV, gadgets, Ikea and dietary supplements.
Responsible for: the end of trade-unionism, environmentalism, recycling and nutritional information labels on food.
At best: meticulous and modest.
At worst: carping and finicky (to the point of OCD).

Jordan: too much make-up, big, fake boobs and one half of a celebrity couple: how much more Pluto in Libra do you need?

Jordan: too much make-up, big, fake boobs and one half of a celebrity couple: how much more Pluto in Libra do you need?

Pluto in Libra conversely doesn’t have much time for being meticulous about work, they simply want to be appreciated and appear attractive. While Pluto in Leo resorted to cosmetic surgery to fend off the horrors of aging, Pluto in Libra has utilised the same facility to get themselves a bigger pair of boobs and a nicer looking nose. Here, Venusian themes are at the forefront, so this generation wants to present a flawless visage: girls with this placement very often wear so much make-up that their skin appears utterly blemishless. The Pluto in Virgo generation, who are the employers of this age-group are quite often shocked by how poor Pluto in Libra’s attention span is when it comes to the workplace; they’re too busy flirting via text and updating their Facebook profile to care too much about scrubbing the company database. Of course, it is no surprise therefore that Facebook is a uniquely Pluto in Libra phenomenon, as are texting, Myspace and so forth: social networking is a chance to interact on a scale hitherto undreamed of and enormous entourages of admirers can be accumulated to sate Pluto in Libra’s obsession with being socially desirable and – at least superficially – attractive. Relationship will no doubt be the Achilles’ Heel for this generation, they’ll be so busy with trying to be universally appealing that their flailing sense of commitment might destabilise the institution of marriage once and for all, which leaves a fair amount of work for fanatically loyal and committed Pluto in Scorpio to do.
Obsessed with: attractiveness, flirting and popularity.
Favourite things: Networking, cellphones, boob-jobs, style (over substance) and celebrity couples.
Responsible for: Facebook, Extreme Makeover, Trinny & Susannah and What Not to Wear, botox, crop-tops and Ecstasy.
At best: poised and charming.
At worst: vain and superficial.

The Pluto in Scorpio generation are still young, so it will not be so easy to observe their predilections and in any case, here in its own sign, it’s likely that all bets are off. Pluto in Scorpio’s fixations and obsessions are likely to be based around sex, non-materialism and commitment. Watch this space.

Next week I shall begin an exploration of the transits of Pluto in the context of the radix placement and I have some exciting observations to share. In the meatime, if you require my professional insights into the meaning and purpose of your Pluto, then please visit Astrology Hour.