"JON & KATE PLUS 8"
Last night’s episode of “Jon & Kate” redefined the phrase “very special episode” for a whole new generation. Not to spoil it for the DVR crowd, but the much-anticipated “big announcement” was pretty much what we assumed. No, Kate is not pregnant with triplets.
The couple is filing for divorce. Let me rephrase that. The couple has already filed for divorce. It seems that the Gosselins and TLC have taken a page from the “Idol”/Fox synergy playbook, airing their separation announcement on the very day divorce papers were filed.
Somehow, though, this is leaving a worse taste in my mouth than those Ford music videos ever did.
The first half of the hour-long episode did not mention the separation at all. Instead, we got a 30-minute product placement advertisement for “Crooked Houses.” The Gosselin kids were gifted four of the custom-made playhouses -- one for each of the twins, and two more for the sextuplet boys and girls.
Don’t get out your credit card yet, though. Models like the “Plus 8” received start at around $5,000 (even though they are, indeed, actually “crooked.”)
Perhaps Jon and Kate are trying to use metaphors to break the news to the kids. Let’s see ... there’s “Happy Home,” and then there’s “Crooked Home,” which prepares you for, well, “Broken Home.” I mean, they might as well have their own little homes to practice with. They’re gonna have to learn what it’s like going back and forth between two houses soon enough anyway.
When the “Plus 8” were finally out of their creepy matching “Crooked” T-shirts and back into their creepy matching play clothes, we were able to get to the meat of the episode, which was Jon and Kate giving interviews on the state of their marriage (separately, natch).
I’ve always been a fan of Jon (well, relatively speaking), but his demeanor last night did not endear him to me. His excitement for this “new chapter” in his life clearly screamed “Delayed Quarterlife Crisis,” as did his pair of diamond stud earrings.
He’s looking at a bachelor pad at Trump Place! The world is his oyster! You never know what might happen! “I could get offered a job,” he says.
Uh, news flash, Daddy. To get offered a job, you usually have to apply for a job.
In addition, the “there are soldiers in Iraq dying/why does everyone care about me?” routine seems more appropriate for the likes of, say, a Tara Reid or a Lindsay Lohan. And you, Mr. Gosselin, are no Lindsay Lohan (who, by the way, also has a reality show in the works).
When asked how the show will go on, Kate actually uttered the words “the show must go on.” Really? Must it? Because it seems to be turning into “Jon and Kate Plus Hate.”
According to Kate, part of their motivation in doing the show was “to collect the memories” for themselves. Mission accomplished. Now your kids have a huge “collection of memories.” And ... bonus! It’s in the form of a video scrapbook chronicling the destruction of their parents’ marriage.
Contracts or not, for a network that has built its brand on family-friendly programming, it is really a surprise and a disappointment that TLC is allowing the show to continue. Thank God for the Duggars! They haven’t yet been corrupted by the lure of Hollywood because ... well, because they're not allowed to watch TV.
"I’M A CELEBRITY...GET ME OUT OF HERE!"
With the finale of “Love Boat in the Jungle” airing tomorrow, it’s getting down to the wire.
After last week’s double elimination of Janice and Holly, Stephen Baldwin decided that there were no more souls left to save and opted out of the competition. But- twist! -- because of his departure, an ex-campmate was given the opportunity to return.
Who would it be? Frangela? Speidi? No! It was Jolly ... er, I mean “Janice” and “Holly.”
As Janice pleaded her case on her knees (too easy), she had the remarkable ability to seem sincere and sympathetic while somehow still working into her appeal the fact that she had been up against Julia Roberts for the lead in “Pretty Woman.”
Holly came in and gave a more understated plea, and a discussion was had. Yes, everyone agreed that they’d rather have Holly back in camp for her sheer likability. But she would be more difficult to beat than Janice for that very reason.
In the end, the camp decided they simply couldn’t take any more of Janice and unanimously voted to banish her.
Sanjolly was back together, spooning in the hammocks and holding hands, the perfect way to show off their matching Kabbalah bracelets! There even seemed to be a steamy moment in the river, but because of editing the action was as ambiguous as Sanjaya’s sexuality.
The bliss was not to be had for long, though. An Elimination Trial was announced, with the two lowest vote-getters -- Holly and John -- going head to head for survival. The challenge was to down a series of bug-flavored cocktails in the shortest amount of time. Despite complaining of a “height disadvantage,” John won by a fraction of a second, sending Holly into exile yet again.
Tune in tonight to get the results from last night’s elimination vote.
"KATHY GRIFFIN: MY LIFE ON THE D-LIST"
Lately it seems the plot of every episode is to meet up with celebrities (Bette Midler, Lily Tomlin) and get said celebrity to call other celebrities on the phone (Stevie Nicks, Jane Fonda). Hilarious all the same, but remember when “Will & Grace” went into “guest star overload?” This week’s show didn’t fall into that trap. Yes, there was a guest star -- Paula Deen -- but thankfully they didn’t prank call Rachael Ray.
It all started when our girl Kathy was defeated in her bid for a Best Comedy Album Grammy. It couldn’t have come as too much of a shock; the competition was stiff. I didn’t even realize that "Flight of the Conchords" was in the running. Forget dead George Carlin, those blokes are funny (and musical)! Alas, though, Carlin was awarded the prize posthumously, which sent Kathy into a bit of a funk.
But that ain’t nothing that biscuits and gravy can’t cure! Soon after, our heroine received a package in the mail from none other than Paula Deen -- queen of country cookin’ -- with an invitation for her and Team Griffin to come sit a spell in Savannah. Also tagging along was friend Michael McDonald (no, not the singer; the MadTV guy).
Paula’s home -- aside from the dog turds -- was cozy and warm. (Think Teresa’s home from “The Real Housewives of New Jersey.” Now think opposite of that.) She laid out a huge Southern feast for her guests and after they said grace, the conversation turned to trichotillomania and her gay assistant Brandon’s apparent drinking problem (personally, I think he was downing liquid courage in order to try his moves on Michael McDonald.)
Kathy and Paula had a heart-to-heart in the bedroom and I didn’t cringe once. Our girl wasn’t trying too hard as she seems to do sometimes with the “bigger names.” And Paula was just so down-to-earth that there was no need to try anyway. I haven’t really been exposed to this woman much before, but I may just take up cooking so I can watch her! OK, maybe I’ll just watch her cook. Either way, she is a delight!
Next week it is back to trying too hard and prank calling celebrities with the likes of Paris Hilton. If anybody can make that funny, it’s Kathy.