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The Simple Life 2 - Episode 7 Summary

'Can I get an Amen' By thetick
Original Airdate: July 21, 2004

ok, the short version: gospel family... main rule no profanity... ergo ==> “bleep, muthaf*vckin, bleepity, bleep bleep.... sexual innuendoes... bleeeeeep... clean up the camper, religion lite... Nicole’s Soul Train breakfast... bleepyoufvckingbithcbleep...some fatherly advice that sinks in?...not bleeping likely.... baseball team job... hormonal juices... obligatory icy hot/ben gay practical joke... sexual innuendoes redux... doggie poo as metaphor... cut to scenes from next week

there, that’s all you really need. feel free to skip the rest of this, particularly the ranty next section

and now, in honor of the gospelicious Cash family, a bit of a sermon from thetick:

I had such high hopes for The Simple Life 2. Despite being from Fox, TSL had been a nice change of pace in reality tv world. Clearly with only 6 original episodes (with a few “lost” episodes of reworked extra footage) of just a half hour each, lots of material was still left to be mined. And, the format had several classic elements already: the fish out of water, the buddies, the laughing at the idiot factor. To this was going to be added another classic element - the road trip. It should have worked.

it doesn’t

what was previously funny, now falls flat
what once seemed cute, now shows up as tacky
a tv show I really used to laugh at, now just comes off joyless and mean

Everything is the same isn’t it, so what is wrong? Nicole and Paris are certainly the same. Considering the insulated worlds they live in where all actions are consequence free, Nicole and/or Paris’s opportunity for growth and therefore change was minimal. If they are the same rude, tacky, spoiled biyatches, stumblefvcking their way through life, it must be funny still, right? Well no, we miss the Leddings. You remember them, the Arkansas family the girls stayed with on the first season. What they provided and what season two sorely misses is a moral compass. (You are really on your way towards crotchety old man status when you start tossing around phrases like “moral compass”.) It was the juxtaposition of the girls outlandish actions with the Ledding’s horrified reactions that made the first season so funny. It was the ever so slight bit of remorse the girls learned from seeing that their actions brought consequences onto the Leddings that kept the girls from coming off as completely distasteful. Having removed the Leddings from the second season, their is no positive influence of any sort on the girls and consequently the show comes off entirely meanspirited. And the really pointless thing about this gap is how unnecessary it was. In the Cash family from tonight’s episode, the show had the perfect family to juxtapose against the girls for season 2. By letting them spend a night or two, then drive on, the girls never have the time to feel any attachment to any family and hence have no real respect for any of their hosts regardless of how plasticky fake an act they put on. The road trip was a bad idea. I would have loved to see Paris and Nicole spend a few months with the Cash family. Over time, the girls would have seen how genuinely hurtful their actions were and might have slightly modified their behavior in order to better fit in. Instead, they got another drive by insulting in and still had time for Nicole to fix her makeup as they drove off.

meh, this season I can do without

And now, only because I signed up for it...

Episode 7 summary - The Extended Dance Remix

We open before the introductory theme song tonight, with some words from tonight’s host family, the Cash’s, who are a gospel singing African American family in Texas. From the cheerfully optimistic tone of the Cash family’s comments it is clear they really don’t know what they are getting into. After the credits we see the girls driving up to the Cash family home and immediately laughing at the hymn playing doorbell. After meeting Dad and Mom, the girls introduce their dogs. We then jump to dinner and Dad asking for Grace. He very specifically asks for the blessing to include Nicole and Paris. Post blessing, Mom then lays out the rules of the house:

1)”We don’t speak profanity.”
2)”We don’t wear halter tops, short shorts, and showing all of your stomach..”
3)”Just pitch in and help.”
4)”Mess up - Clean up”

Now these seem like perfectly reasonable, ordinary house rules. It might not be exactly what the girls are used to, but out of respect for their hosts, surely they can live up to them for one night? Next, the dinner conversation is not exactly flowing and Nicole is trying to feel out the Cash family and break the ice. BTW, have you ever noticed how much of the conversational burden Nicole carries? In any situation that isn’t perfectly comfortable to her, Paris freezes up and just plasters (get it - plaster of Paris) an incredibly fake simpering smile on her face and just vogues her way through the situation. sigh... I wish I could pull that act to get out of the rest of this... Any way, Nicole decides to ask the kids their ages, and on hearing that three of the Cash kids are 24, 22, and 21, she of course comments to the parents, “you folks were getting busy.” When that falls flat (figure that in a religious household) she instead tells them “hey, I’m a black folk too.” This is just so completely moronic that they have to laugh both at and with her and the tension is broken. Unfortunately soon after that one of the Cash sons asks about their previous road trip experiences and Nicole rips off a three bleeper about the uncircumcised junk on the guys at the Nudist colony. So much for rule #1 and so much for the tension being broken. Nicole pretty much curses her way through dinner like the proverbial drunken sailor while Paris maxes out her mental capacity with an intense simper.

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