Editor’s Note: This is a weekly guest post from the TV staff at Film.com. Check back here on Wednesdays for more Film.com stories about your favorite shows: Big Brother, The Amazing Race, Dancing with the Stars, Survivor, American Idol and America’s Next Top Model.
By Susan Young, Film.com
The Celebrity Apprentice closed out the spring reality season with a controversial decision. Donald Trump fired Annie Duke, the person with all the right business qualifications, in favor of Joan Rivers, the older candidate who perhaps had her charity priorities in better order.
But all that most viewers really cared about was who was going to come out on top when these two battling she-dogs bared their fangs at yet another boardroom showdown. Joan has called Annie Hitler, poker-playing trash and scum.
While Annie the poker player kept her game face on for most of the competition, Joan’s synthetic mug was stretched to the breaking point as she threw more fits than a toddler with a sugar high.
Through the course of the show, Joan stormed around, threatening to quit several times – which has always equaled a dismissal by the D-Man. She finally hit her stride when daughter Melissa was fired by Trump. The two believed Annie and her celebuddy Brande Roderick were to blame.
Which leads us to the worst spoiled child temper tantrum in reality history – well, at least on broadcast TV. Melissa, who must have learned the vituperation skills from momma’s knee, called Annie and Brande “whore pit vipers” before storming around, with a brace on her leg, going into a complete meltdown that included telling the crew that she was done and that she would not do a post-firing interview.
While Melissa completely slipped out of touch with her composure, she’s not the only one to have had some serious mind disconnects this season.
You expect such drama on shows like America’s Next Top Model, which kicked off the season with Aminat screaming down from her perch on the top of the stairs at Natalie. “You are stu-pid! Stu-pid! STU-PID!,” Aminat repeated her single-word slur as she marched down the stairs and into Natalie’s face. It was so, well, stupid.
Bad behavior brought down a lot of this season’s contestants on Dancing with the Stars. Denise Richards’ life is, of course, complicated. Steve-O has a rap sheet that includes an incident where he stapled his man berries to his thigh in public and Lil Kim has served some jail time. But they were all on their best behavior for the ballroom blitz. No, it was stand-up comedian David Alan Grier who pulled the punk card.
He did an on air, profanity-laced rant with Access Hollywood after his elimination that had dance partner Kym Johnson – and probably anyone within earshot -cringing.
“There’s several people that can kiss my ass, but [Carrie Ann Inaba] is definitely the first in line,” David spewed. “I am proudest that I didn’t climb across that table and slap the s*** out of every one of those judges.”
Kind of makes the Amazing Race snippy little verbal slap fest between mom Margie and deaf son Luke and sisters Kisha and Jen just seem so slight in comparison, despite the heavy hyping by the Amazing Race publicity team. Margie felt that the other team was mocking her son’s disability. “He’s had to deal with this his entire life,” said an obviously angry and frustrated Margie.
Kisha and Jen said they were never laughing or mocking Luke, but they obviously believed that Luke was lacking in some basic manners. Kisha said in interviews that she didn’t approve of her sister Jen calling Luke a nasty name, but at least they tried to apologize.
Meltdowns, breakdowns, it’s part of the reason why we tune in to reality TV. You never know what’s going to come out of someone’s mouth at any given time.
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(Image courtesy of NBC)