Mrs Filthy's Real World Review

February 5, 2002

Pitching Woo

Darlings, I personally think it's hilarious that these supposedly hip cast members are tooling around Chicago in a big blue minivan of all things. I keep expecting to see shin guards and car seats scattered through the cab. I only bring this up because today's drama begins with the minivan; it gets a flat tire, and before you can say "grease monkey," Keri's working away at the problem.

The guys, however, wrestle the job away from her, and Keri resents this intrusion on her autonomy. "I'm a girl," she sneers sarcastically, "and girls don't know anything!" She might or might not know what she's doing automotively, but she knows when she's being pushed around. Once the tire is replaced, however, Keri doesn't really show her displeasure. Her housemates, who were hand-picked for dramatic potential, don't understand her reticence at all.

Later, Kyle and Keri talk about the Infamous Van Incident. Kyle says he likes the type of girl who would undertake the job of changing a tire without worrying about her nails. And yet, he apparently wants Keri to throw a hissy fit when she doesn't get her way. This emotional restraint will not do! Keri promises to be more forthcoming in the future. When she admits her fear of tornadoes to Kyle, he almost wets himself with happiness. She's vulnerable, and he can play the leading man to her damsel in distress.

This would all be pretty lackluster if this were the entire Keri-Kyle relationship, but we're in familiar intra-house romance territory. Kyle thinks that Keri is "chill" and "wants to know the serious side of her." Keri may try to deny it, but she's got her hawk-eye on Mr. All-American, and perhaps someday, those pillowy lips of hers. The two secret lovebirds can barely keep their hands off one another. And the rest of the hive is positively buzzing with activity, waiting to see if Keri and Kyle act on their oh-so-obvious feelings.

Of course, my sweets, Kyle has a girl back home, a girl with whom he has a "fairy tale romance." Fairy tales usually mean that a witch is involved, but Kyle tells Chris that he's determined to be faithful to yon princess Nicole. Moments later, we hear Kyle venting that he doesn't know what his status is with Nicole at all, that they're separated. Could it be that he's preparing himself for a major rationalization? When Kyle talks with Keri, he tells her that as radiant as that pixie Nicole is, "I need to have other relationships." Keri agrees and vehemently hangs on his every word, waiting for the payoff; hint, hint- he needs to have a relationship with her! The payoff doesn't arrive, however.

Not even alcohol improves the situation. One night, the kids are a-dancin' and a-drinkin', and Keri puts quite a few away. She's very proud of herself. "I've been drinking since I was fourteen!" she boasts to Kyle. (Right now, fourteen is the number. Later, it might be fifteen or twelve.) "I never black out or puke," she exclaims to the streets of Chicago. The proud battle cry of the borderline alcoholic!

However, she will fall on her face if unattended, and Kyle walks her home. He's so smitten with her helplessness that he doesn't mind her inebriated yelling. I will tell you this, my darlings, Keri gets a little belligerent when she's toasted. When they get home, Keri apologizes for her behavior, and events threaten to turn mushy when Kyle offers to tuck Keri into bed. I'm sure the independent Keri is perfectly capable of tucking herself in, but not one to sniff at opportunity, she welcomes Kyle into her boudoir.

Alas, nothing comes of it, even though Keri tries to stretch out their "friendly" hug. And alas, once that opportunity is gone, another one might be hard to come by. When Kyle's school buddy Jason, who incidentally has the exact same haircut but less hair, shows up, it's Kyle's turn to get drunk and obnoxious. Keri watches as Kyle gets all touchy-feely with some anonymous blondie in a bar and she storms off, Cara in tow. Is this all we get for all the hype? It certainly wouldn't be our first disappointment, would it, mes amis?

What about Tonya's life-threatening situation, you ask? I know you've been sitting on tenterhooks for a week, my bonbons, imagining Tonya at death's door. Now that our little sweet onion is back in her hometown, she seems calmer. She visits the doctor, she canoodles with her beau. In regards to her housemates, she brags, "I'm a lot more stable than they are." This is the girl who threw her luggage down the stairs in a weepy fit?

I think it's safe to say that Tonya will be just fine. In fact, her biggest problem is going to be finding a spot in the house when she returns. Her roomies remark how calm and tension-free Real World life is without her and are bonding away in domestic bliss. No one seems to be anxious for Tonya's return. After all, her return is bound to be emotionally draining for everyone involved, including us.

Who's Topless? Kyle flaunts his chest a couple of times in this episode, mostly in the presence of the attentive Keri.

Who Cries? Since Tonya is in self-imposed Walla Walla exile, not a single tear is shed in metropolitan Chicago.

Most Annoying: Kyle is the type of guy who says he values a woman's independence, but then turns around and wants to see her mewling and clinging like a nursing kitten. In the words of Keri, "Not cool!"

Best Quote: "I'm so excited I got this drunk tonight," bellows Keri through her alcoholic haze. Well, dearie, we're excited for you, too.

Next Week: Major 'tude problems all around!

Mrs Filthy's "Battle of the Seasons" Review


February 4, 2002


There's a storm a-brewing, my little chickadees, and I'm not only talking about Hurricane Juliette! Sure, the impending rain and high winds are causing a stir among the oft-pampered Real Worlders and Road Rulers. No, darlings, this storm is the most dangerous of all: the hot-air histrionics that occur whenever a bunch of attention-seekers competing for filthy lucre appear before the camera.

In the first episode of the "Battle of the Seasons," married Roadsters Holly and Chadwick caused their teammates to hate their eternally conjoined guts. Their wedded bliss, which is manifest in constant drooly smooching, is just icky to watch. But that's a minor factor compared to the impression that the formidable Holly and Mr. Holly (who are on separate teams) are in league together, putting all the other teams at risk. The kids seem to feel that Lovey and Dovey will agree with each other in all things and walk away with the $300,000.

For heaven's sake, those kids certainly have an odd idea of marriage! My beloved spouse and I barely agree upon how to hang the toilet paper, let alone any substantive issue. Anyway, the real sniping began when the Road Rules Inner Circle decided to eliminate the competitive duo Yes and Veronica, instead of culling the weakest from the herd. That very first vote set the tone for any machinations to follow. The Road Rules cast members now realize that they don't have to worry about those noodle-necks over in the Real World Villa; they're worried about the other Road Rulers!

Jisela in particular is making a big stink, since she feels robbed of the companionship of her homegirl Veronica. She regards Holly and Chadwick as lifelong enemies and forbids her partner Adam to even speak to them. Belou is another detractor of the Holly and Chadwick union, since they've implied that her parenting skills are sub-par. She charges at them like a drunken rhino and curses a blue streak. Ah, motherhood! "I don't love no one like I love my kid," Belou huffs, but evidently she doesn't love her baby enough to avoid shattered glass or double negatives!

Of course, the easiest way to resolve all these hard feelings would be to complete another mission and vote again. Hurricane Juliette, however, nixes that solution, and the kids find themselves trapped. Host Eric Nies encourages his charges to "enjoy the hurricane and chill," but with no electricity, no showers and no cell phones that doesn't seem likely. That is, unless you're Miami Mike and try to go swimming in the 35 foot waves. Well, at least his blubber would keep him afloat.

The stir-crazy cast members are desperate for amusement, a break from the internal and external dramas. Piggy and Theo discuss tummy-shaving. Some of the guys play Scrabble with slang and curse words; talk about walking on the wild side, dearies! Lindsay, Kelley and Becky get high off each other's b.o. and collapse giggling in a corner. In the words of Sharon, this confinement turns out to be a "very painful experience."

Suddenly, Norman gets a swell idea, "Let's play nightclub in the basement!" This idea, however, morphs into a toga party. Cast members from both programs are invited, and it looks like the only party-poopers are the married people and the mom. Sharon, who masterfully integrates palm fronds into her ensemble, wins the prize for best toga. Unfortunately, the prize is Mike from New York wriggling all over her and mussing her outfit. Let's hope this storm passes quickly, dearies!

Next Week: Talk of a Road Rules Inner Circle alliance causes Jisela to get her panties in a bunch. Oh wait, Jisela's probably not even wearing panties!

Want to tell Mrs. Filthy something?

This Week, Mrs. Filthy's Reading:

Travels in Hyperreality:Essays by Umberto Eco