“They say there is no such thing as bad publicity,” said Brad Trechak in AOL Television, “but I have to wonder.” Willie Aames -- whose years as a child star included high-profile roles in “Eight is Enough” and “Charles in Charge” -- saw his acting career fizzle and attempted suicide after his wife left him. Now he’s broke, and he just held a garage sale in Kansas City -- could this be a bid for enough publicity to land a reality TV gig?

It might very well be, said Josh Grossberg in E! The one-time “Teen Beat” poster boy, 48, has quite a story -- he declared bankruptcy, his car was repossessed, his wife left him after 22 years, he sold off autographed photos and lots of TV memorabilia. But Aames is clearly thinking comeback even as he falls victim to the collapsing economy -- he had a camera crew “capture his fire sale for a TV documentary about his life.”

Many in the crowd that showed up for the garage sale said they felt like they knew him already, said Joe Lambe in The Kansas City Star. There were artifacts from his TV days, his time touring with his rock band, the days of his drug troubles, and the period since his Christian rebirth -- including his work as the costumed Christian superhero, Bibleman. Clearly, even in hard times, Aames still has his fans.