Another Palin continues to lament media treatment while seeking further attention in Lifetime's Bristol Palin: Life's a Tripp
06/18/12 01:11 PM
Premiering: Tuesday, June 19th at 9 p.m. (central) on Lifetime with back-to-back episodes
Starring: Bristol Palin, Tripp Palin and other assorted Palins
Produced by: David McKenzie, Jim Romanovich, David Martin
By ED BARK
No, Bristol Palin initially didn't ask to be more than the minor celebrity daughter of a rootin' tootin' little-known Alaska governor.
But then came that little 2008 presidential campaign. And "all of a sudden my personal life was front page news," she laments at the outset of her latest attempt to stay in the spotlight.
Having written a book, lectured on sexual abstinence and placed third on ABC's Dancing with the Stars, the single mom Palin with the son named Tripp takes her dubious talents to Lifetime in the 10-episode Bristol Palin: Life's a Tripp. Keeping up with the Kardashians isn't just the name of the E! network's drivel-athon. It also seems to be the mission of the Palins while they simultaneously flaunt their persecution complexes.
"Even though it seemed like the media was trying to tear me down, my faith, my family and my friends held me up," 21-year-old Bristol proclaims before her new series finds her jetting off to Hollywood with reluctant older sister Willow in tow.
Ostensibly she's uprooting in the interests of her new job with Help the Children. But the sum total of her workplace experience in Tuesday's back-to-back episodes is a very brief drive-by through L.A.'s "skid row." Bristol tells her boss that she's not familiar with that term. OK, enough of that yucky stuff.
After arriving at the posh and conveniently vacant Hollywood Hills mansion of a "family friend," Bristol and Willow go clothes-shopping -- everything's too shi shi or skimpy -- before younger sis hits the Saddle Ranch bar in the company of visiting friends Jacob and Marissa. This is where the "drama" kicks in, although it's already been all over youtube for the past eight months.
While Bristol tries her hand at riding a mechanical bull, a lout yells out, "Did you ride Levi like that? Your mother's a whore."
In the spirit of Jersey Shore, Bristol must confront the imbecile while cameras roll. The guy, who says he's 47 after being asked his age, continues to decry Sarah Palin as a "devil," primarily because she "lives, she breathes."
Bristol then supplies the cliffhanger from Episode 1 to 2 by inquiring why he feels that way. "Is it because you're a homosexual?" she demands before viewers are left with a "To Be Continued" alert.
They resume their pointed exchange in Episode 2, with the instigator and a pal spewing expletives before Bristol exits to tearily phone both her Alaskan boyfriend/friend Gino and mom Sarah to grouse about "the hate we go through."
Except that it's hard to work up even a small vial of sympathy for Bristol, who's in L.A. and at this bar in the service of Lifetime-style "drama." Of which there'd really be none at all had a heckler not cooperated.
Meanwhile, Willow grouses about being her self-indulgent sister's full-time babysitter.
"She thinks I'm like the nanny or something," says Willow. Responds Bristol shortly before another weepy interlude: "She has no idea the pressure that I'm under."
Still, the two sisters seem to spend quite a bit of time together without Tripp despite Bristol's constant assertions that Willow's babysitting is essential to Bristol's concocted exploratory "journey" through new places and experiences. Maybe Tripp's hanging out at the catering truck? It's never explained.
The star's former Dancing with the Stars partner, Mark Ballas, also drops in to commiserate at lunch after Bristol notes that she needs "a break from all this drama." Sarah and Bristol's baby sister, Piper, also log a little screen time while husband Todd is briefly seen but not heard. Tripp's wayward father, Levi, is billed for a future episode.
The setups and previews of coming attractions serve to pad an already threadbare premise. Are viewers actually supposed to empathize with a poor little rich girl who lives in a lushly appointed pad fit for ABC's The Bachelor and carps about how sister Willow "teaches him (Tripp) bad things" during her virtually indentured servitude?
Life's A Tripp in reality is nothing more than another Lifetime stumble. Its subjects live off their media fame while at the same time blaming the media for often making them miserable.
In the Palins' case, it's a chorus without basis. And it's gotten damned boring, too, even with help from that aforementioned bar heckler who -- get this -- is now suing Bristol and Lifetime for defamation.
He's probably just angling for his own reality series.