'Skating With Celebrities' Kristy Swanson, Lloyd Eisler pair up off ice
By Reality TV World staff, 02/17/2006
It might only feature minor celebrities rather than world class Olympic athletes, however Fox's Skating With Celebrities reality series has ended up with a skating scandal of its own, with the then-pregnant wife of Lloyd Eisler, the professional skating partner of Skating finalist Kristy Swanson, blaming an affair between the skating pair for breaking up her marriage.
The pre-taped Fox reality show, which ironically began with show judge Dorothy Hamell criticizing the pair for not "having more of a connection" after a Skating With Celebrities premiere episode performance that left Kristy and Lloyd in last place, was filmed last year.
"I was shocked, upset and betrayed," Marcie Eisler, Lloyd's 31-year-old wife, told Star magazine about her husband's relationship with the 36-year-old former Buffy The Vampire Slayer movie star. "I should have trusted my instincts."
Marcie, who says she and her husband had separated earlier in the summer but were still "working on their relationship" in early August when Fox offered 42-year-old Lloyd a chance to appear in the Los Angeles-filmed series, elaborated further during an interview with her local Kingston Whig-Standard newspaper in Kingston, Ontario.
"I had said in my wedding vows that I would do what I could to encourage his hopes and dreams and I said, 'Go off to Los Angeles,'" Marcie, who was four months pregnant with the couple's second child at the time, told the Whig-Standard. "It was a great opportunity for him."
But according to the Star, Marcie began to suspect that the her husband was having an affair with Kristy when she flew out to Los Angeles to visit him while the show was taping. Kristy reportedly made sure that Lloyd's wife knew the truth by late October, when she forwarded Marcie a "steamy e-mail" that Lloyd had sent Kristy. "It basically talked about how much he loved her," a source told Star.
After that, Lloyd "eventually admitted" to the affair. "I told him, 'One of us is leaving this house because we cannot continue together,'" Marcie told the Star. "Lloyd left on November 5th." The couple reportedly signed their separation agreement on November 30.
Lloyd confirms that he's seeing Kristy, but denies that the relationship began before he and his wife were separated. "They met and spent time together as ice skating partners when they taped for Fox’s Skating With Celebrities, Cheryl Kagan, Lloyd's publicist, told the Whig-Standard in a written statement. "They started dating after Lloyd officially separated from his wife and they are very happy."
Lloyd has been married to Marcie for three years. In addition to their new two month old son Seth, the couple also has 21 month son Ethan. The couple met six years ago in a local Kingston bar in which Marcie worked at the time.
Reached after Lloyd's statement, Marcie told the Whig-Standard that her husband's claim that his relationship with Kristy began after they separated is not true, but she is recovering from the pain and moving on. "I am the lucky person in all of this," she told the paper. "I have the most amazing foundation of friends and family, I have my two little boys who are the joy of my life and I'm coming out the other side and I'm OK."
"I [still] talk to Lloyd because we have two children together," Marcie told the Star. "I guess he and Kristy deserve each other." In the meantime, she's sold the couple's house in Bath, Ontario and is moving to a new home in nearby Kingston. "I need a fresh start," she explained.
Lloyd, a two-time Olympic pairs bronze medalist and world pairs champion, retired from competitive skating in 1994, but continued to perform in exhibitions with Isabelle Brasseur, his pairs partner of 17 years, for another decade. He completely retired from skating in October 2004, citing a torn rotator cuff and a desire to spent more time at home. "After all these years, it would be nice to not travel for a while and just spend some time at home," he told the London Free Press in an October 2004 interview.
Skating With Celebrities airs its finale on Monday, February 27. Kristy and Lloyd will face off against Jillian Barberie and professional partner John Zimmerman in the pre-taped finale (luckily for Lloyd and Kristy, unlike American Idol and Dancing with the Stars, Skating With Celebrities doesn't feature home viewer voting.)