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Recap: Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars, Where’s It All Going Edition

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I think the biggest issue to come to a head at “Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars” on WEtv is that these reality television “celebrities” don’t truly want to talk about the REAL issues plaguing their marriages on camera.

Say what? They signed up for a reality television show to fix their relationships (not all of them are even married), but when the chips are down, more than one camper is ready to quit.

The “realest” thing I saw tonight was that Traci Braxton has a serious alcohol problem and she does not want to discuss it on camera with Kevin. But really, she doesn’t want to EVER discuss that problem with her husband, instead she turns the tables on him and says he treats her like a child. Well, let’s evaluate what we’ve seen.

“Breakfast vodka” is not normal. Not unless you’re at Keg’n’Eggs for Bloody Mary’s before the University of Maryland football game (yeah, Traci and Kevin are from my home state). Nor is “breakfast beer,” as Traci referred to her favorite things during the “hot button” drill.

Damn, Traci, even Roger thinks you’re a lush and he’s spent years on “Jersey Shore” with JWoww, Snooki and the rest of the booze crew. Even “The Situation” didn’t start out the day ON CAMERA with a tall glass of straight vodka.

You have a serious problem woman, and your marriage isn’t it. The booze may have been a result of being in a shitty marriage, but now it’s going to be the biggest issue to prevent you from saving your marriage if you don’t admit that it’s a problem.

After Kevin calls her out for drinking too much during the “hot button” exercise designed to let them identify their trigger issues, Traci decides to quit Marriage Boot Camp and tries to go upstairs and pack. But fortunately (meant with serious sarcasm), Gretchen is on hand to intervene and offer to talk if she needs it.

Bahahaha! Really Gretchen? You have absolutely nothing to offer here. Get out of Jim and Elizabeth’s way. The only reason they showed that to us was because you looked so freakin stupid up there knocking on the door. Traci wouldn’t even let you in. Get a grip. Doesn’t Slade hide from you in bathrooms? Perhaps you should evaluate the way people respond to your offers of sympathy and help.

Gretchen arrives at the first morning exercise in a lovely coral cocktail dress. No, seriously. She looks ridiculous. I mean, she’s pretty, sure… but she kinda reminds me of a high-priced call girl. She’s dressed wrong. Her grammar is just painfully bad. And she’s so desperate for acceptance from ANYONE that you can smell it through the TV screen. What the hell is wrong with her?

Slade does not love Gretchen. I’m just going to say what everyone else was thinking. When they did “The Morgue” exercise where they had to identify the body of their dead spouse, that dude didn’t even get near her. He didn’t look destroyed. And if his tears were real, it was probably about his poor son who is battling cancer and had nothing at all to do with the Barbie in the drawer. #sorrynotsorry

“I’m sorry my actions allowed such a catastrophic thing to happen,” Slade says.

“Is that it? Don’t you want to touch her one last time?” Elizabeth asks, seeming appalled. She doesn’t let much phase her but you can tell she wanted to smack Slade and tell him to reach out to the woman he supposedly loves. But Slade lets them put her back in the drawer and doesn’t even touch her when she comes to him after the exercise.

“The fact that he’s made no physical contact with Gretchen is a red flag for me,” Elizabeth says. It also underscores the possibility that the whole relationship is a big-ass publicity stunt for the world.

“I might love him more than he loves me,” Gretchen worries. Hmm, ya think?

After evaluations when he’s trying to sleep, Gretchen is standing by the bed bitching at him. “I have fought for this relationship for five long years,” she complains. Slade tells her to stop fighting for it and turns his back on her.

What else do we have to see? Doesn’t Gretchen get it? She may be there for their relationship, but he’s there for the cameras. She probably is too, but if she keeps up this acting, she has a chance at getting a part in a soap opera after “Marriage Boot Camp” finishes. She’s very pretty when she fake cries.

We didn’t see Trista and Ryan do the “hot button” exercise but insiders tell me that they did – in fact, I’ve heard that all of the campers did do all of the drills they just didn’t show it. That’s a shame because the way things appear, the celebs are getting away with murder in production compared to their Bridezilla predecessors.

Ryan and Trista were the only couple who felt completely real to me in the morgue. Ryan immediately embraced her, whispered to her that he loved her, and apologized for not having told her that enough. He was truly devastated.

When Trista got off the table they held each other like they never wanted to let go. That’s the first time I’ve seen anybody engage like that so far this season. That was totally for real. I didn’t watch their TV wedding and I’m becoming a fan. Now I understand better why Trista worries so much about their public image.

Tanisha’s temper tantrum when she saw Clive in the morgue was just typically Tanisha – all about herself. She could care less if Clive is dead – it’s allllll about her. First, she’s afraid of the dark. Then she starts freaking out.

“Why are you doing this to me…?” she asks production. Then she’s yelling at Clive to “get up, get up, I’m sorry!” That might have been real. But it only lasted a second before she flipped and stormed out.

“I can’t do this… I cannot do this. I don’t do death,” Tanisha announces dramatically and then goes out and pukes on the front porch. Elizabeth gave her credit during the evaluation for coming back in and facing her issues, but that’s not what I saw.

I saw Clive go to her and then they got into a fight. And she stormed away again. What exactly was she getting credit for there? I mean, does he really have to die for you to realize that the things you say matter and hurt people, Tanisha? You’re all boohoo I don’t want to be alone but your behavior indicates you’d be better off by yourself. Nobody should have to put up with the constant verbal and physical abuse.

Must admit I was disappointed to hear Clive take a shot at her weight during the “hot button” drill because that’s just mean (yeah, I take weight remarks personally too because I’m a big girl). But really, she lives that “big girl” image and is eating to keep it. Remember how excited she got about the see-through refrigerator in the mansion?

I wouldn’t even let them film me eating when I made “Wedding Island” on TLC. Some women embrace their size, others do not (my category). Regardless, it was a cheap shot and I understood why she slammed that button so hard. Roger’s joke about her probably hitting the buttons the way she hits Clive was probably too close to the truth for comfort.

Jenni and Roger were a hot mess this week. Bottom line: JWoww signed them up to do this and now Jenni and Roger aren’t enjoying it. When she’s in front of the camera, she turns into a different person that Roger doesn’t like very much. Thing is, he fell in love with her while she was creating that public image so you have to wonder how fair it is to suddenly want her to give up what has become a very successful career.

And it is a job and she does work hard at it and she’s making a ton of money with endorsements and her product line. As somebody who also works insane hours that infuriate my husband (but makes a lot less money), I can understand her frustration with Roger no longer supporting the “career” that she created while they were dating.

Did Roger ever tell Jenni that he expected things to change at some point? Methinks they have different goals at the end of the day, and that’s going to be a problem at some point in the future if they even make it to the altar after the baby arrives.

“You always put yourself first in this relationship, always. If it came down to deciding between money, career and me, I feel like money and career would come first,” Roger says. And she basically agrees with him.

“When I do things like this with you, you become JWoww and I consider that to be fake and I can’t stand fake people,” Roger tells her. Ouch! Dude, if you know she’s JWoww in front of the cameras, why did you agree to do this show with her? You’re talking out of both sides of your mouth. He says when she is “JWoww,” he can’t stand her.

I’m confused. Didn’t he fall in love with JWoww in front of millions of people? Didn’t he propose to JWoww on camera in a heavily-produced stunt? So at what point did he suddenly decide that he didn’t want to be a part of her on-camera life? He’s there with her at boot camp so he must have signed a contract too. But he’s bitter as hell about it now.

When Jenni doesn’t want to go downstairs for the evaluations, they have a nasty fight. Of course, we all know now she was really tired because she was pregnant, but he’s right – she can’t sit on her ass and not participate after she agreed to do the program. And she’s been playing the diva and being a brat at EVERY turn.

During the morgue exercise, she wouldn’t even get near Roger. Elizabeth tried to help her but Jenni didn’t take the hand out.

“What would your last words be?” Elizabeth asks. Jenni had nothing to say to her dead baby daddy. Explain that one to your kid in a few years when they watch this online.

“I’ll let you out of here if you come over here and hold his hand,” Jim even tries to bribe her, but she’s not having it. Roger gets so pissed off that he comes back from the dead to give her shit because she’s not giving 100 percent.

“I’m looking at my dead fiancé right now with cameras in my face,” Jenni bitches. Of course, everybody in the world asked themselves the same question at that point.

Since when do cameras bother the great JWoww? Roger is on the same ride. Apparently doing “Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars” was all her idea and he went along with it for her despite the fact he had reservations and warned her.

“You signed up for the wrong thing and that pisses me off, Jenni,” Roger says. “I would support you if you said you wanted to leave. I can’t support you if you say you want to stay and don’t participate.”

He says she agrees to everything on paper and then doesn’t want to do it, and she admits that’s a problem. He’s furious.

“We should have never signed up for this,” Roger says.

I guess this brings me back to the biggest question on Twitter tonight – how much of this is real and how much of this is just reality stars reaching for another piece of the limelight?

I honestly believe that Trista and Ryan are there for the right reasons, and I think Traci and Kevin are there with good intentions too, although they’re not going to accomplish shit if she begins every day of therapy with breakfast vodka and refuses to acknowledge her drinking problem.

Tanisha wants to stay in the public eye however she can – and she’s got a number of projects in process that ensure she’ll do that. But it’s always all about her. How what Clive does affects her. How she can’t handle death. How she feels overwhelmed because she has to take care of her husband and order his hearing aids when he doesn’t do that kind of stuff.

Reality check Tanisha – I’ve been in a successful marriage for 10 years with a man who doesn’t pack for himself when we travel (or unpack) and who basically lets me run things in this stage of our lives (it was different back when he was a SWAT commander and I was just the captain’s wife).

This is marriage, Tanisha. It’s compromise. He puts up with all of your ridiculous shit and in return, you have to help take care of him. Which is what you do if you love somebody. Your behavior towards Clive leads us to believe that you only want him so you won’t be alone. Again, it’s allll about Tanisha. If I were Clive, I’d leave her in a heartbeat.

I’m interested to see where this goes next week. I think what Jenni and Gretchen said when they didn’t want to do the “hot button” drill was very revealing.

“Jim and Elizabeth have to understand that they’re dealing with people that have been in the media and scrutinized over these issues that they’re trying to bring up right now,” Jenni complains. What the hell did you think you were signing up for?

“I get the drill but I also feel like there is people here with cameras and I don’t want anybody ever thinking that he talks to me that way because he would never talk to me that way,” Gretchen explains. Bullshit. He just doesn’t talk to you at all, Gretchen. We learned that tonight. You only signed up for this to get your face on camera again.

I would love to believe Gretchen’s motives were less calculated, but we all saw her follow Traci Braxton upstairs to try to counsel her after her fight with Kevin. It pains me to say this, but Tanisha is right. She’s in everybody’s business – a dangerous place to be when you’re throwing stones from your own glass house. You aren’t Oprah, Gretchen. Not even close.

Will Thinkfactory Media and boot camp directors Jim and Elizabeth Carroll let these “Reality Stars” get away with skipping out on the real meat of marriage counseling because suddenly they don’t want their issues on camera? If that’s the case, they should have just signed up for the real boot camp program and not agreed to be on WEtv’s “Marriage Boot Camp.” I’m watching to see what happens because I don’t want to see them get away with it.


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