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Recap: WEtv Marriage Boot Camp, Glass Houses Edition

jim-and-elizabeth-carroll-wetv-marriage-boot-campDid I just watch the newest episode of “Marriage Boot Camp” on WEtv or was that a WWE Championship bout? Holy crap! I hope the production crew from Thinkfactory Media was getting combat pay. What was that? Jeez, Mark, you weren’t even drunk. That’s your sober anger management? But I’m not being fair, let’s back up to the beginning for those of you who missed the throw down.

I love how each episode starts with the directors brainstorming the day for their campers. It reminds me of our emergency staff meetings when wedding guests/family have had altercations at events prior to the actual wedding and we meet to beef up the security plan. They knew EXACTLY what kind of drama was going to go down. I wanted to be a fly on the wall. I admit it. #sorryimnotsorry

“We’ll get to see the real Mark and Gloria today I think,” Jim tells them all. Oh yeah, that’s what we all need to see. More of Gloria. I don’t like Mark either, but I’m sick of listening to her pick on everybody. Glass houses, Gloria, watch those stones!

The directors are funny and snarky. When they’re discussing Blanca and Julian I almost wet myself when Bobby said “Let me start by saying, yesterday, she shot her own husband.” Exactly. Today is going to be an even longer day. Please don’t hand out weapons again.

The campers’ day starts with Blanca attempting to make breakfast for Julian. Apparently, cereal is a serious challenge. And nobody made enough coffee for her – shame on them! But I was most fascinated by her nails. I have really long natural nails so I like a good mani… but what’s with those rhinestones? You look like an iPhone case, girl. Don’t rub your eyes or pick your nose without a medic nearby.

I just don’t understand why she didn’t get up and go make him a bagel to eat in bed, just like he does for her. It would have scored Blanca a lot of credibility points. Is she lazy or not very smart? Everyone was making fun of her. All she had to do was make a LITTLE effort. C’mon girl, I was cheering for you when I saw your ass out of bed. Then you blew it.

The first therapy exercise was called “Heed my Need,” but they should have just called it “the husbands need more sex.” For real. They started out by writing what they needed from each other on their shirts.

brise

Julian wants more sex. And more blow jobs. He’s sick of doing all the work.

Jeff wants more sex too, but Tasha is punishing him for being a “minute man” – ouch!

Mark is honest and it’s funny. “All I really want is sex,” he says. But… “To fulfill all of Gloria’s needs I think I’ll need two shirts.”

I’m not really sure I understood this exercise, but then again, I’m only a wedding planner and armchair psychologist. The point to most of them seemed to be that your spouse could get it somewhere else if he or she wanted to.

In fact, they tell Blanca that Julian is “prime” to have somebody swoop in and take him away. Sounds really weird to try to make insecure spouses more insecure intentionally.
But that’s how you get drama. And it worked.

Shaun is a moron because, although he was playing along with the exercise, he never should have openly admitted he treats Sofia like crap compared to his ex-girlfriend. “There are some things that should just never be said,” Blanca and Julian agree in interview later. Damn, compassion from Blanca.

Tomas is on the road five days a week, and it makes Mai-Lee crazy. She is jealous and she is worried and she loves her husband but maybe she’s suffocating Tomas unintentionally. When I learned he’s gone all week every week, I understood her insecurity a lot better. But I’m going to point out that in the next exercise, Tomas was the ONLY camper we saw mention his spouse to the girls who were flirting with him.

“I live my life anxious and nervous and worried and calling and harassing…” Mai-Lee knows exactly what she’s doing wrong so I didn’t understand director Jim’s need to tell Tomas that he “could easily find somebody else.” That was mean.

Jeff wants sex and accuses Tasha of crocodile tears. Although it doesn’t go that far in the exercise, they have a big fight with an audience afterwards where Tasha does everything possible to insult his manhood.

Ick alert! Brace yourself or skip to the next paragraph. Apparently, Tasha has a million marital aids (whips, lube, costumes, etc.) and it’s not helping. “There is times where you do work well with your mouth, and it’s cool beans, but I want some penis!” Tasha yells. Maybe his willy is afraid of her.

I agree completely with Blanca’s grossed out assessment: “TMI!”

Mark and Gloria were a joke. She wouldn’t listen to what he was saying and just did the usual drown-him-out and criticize. “Honestly, I’ve told you before, if you can’t step up to the plate, your place can be replaced.” What a fantastic way to start the day, right? Not sure why she was the one outside later on. Maybe she needs to learn that she is also VERY replaceable. And four of those kids are all yours girl.

So the next exercise is called “Stranger Danger” and it’s possibly the stupidest and most entertaining thing I’ve seen all week long. Thank you WEtv! It was better than watching Sonja Morgan on “Real Housewives of New York” trying to keep others’ hands off her 23-year-old boy-toy. Far more dramatic!

They split up the couples into two groups – the ones who weren’t being appreciated enough went outside to a pool cocktail party. The ones taking their spouses for granted had to watch it on TV. And there were other guests at the pool party specifically there to hit on their spouses. Mai-Lee is right when she says “When it comes to these drills, it’s always bad news when we’re separated.”

But before we go any further, I’d like to give a reality check on what we were watching. Production hired a bunch of actors/models (not particularly beautiful ones, mind you – just average attractive) and gave them a briefing and set them loose on the five on the pool deck. The five sitting inside watching basically have to know this – they’re not stupid and they’re sequestered in this mansion so all the random party guests didn’t just pop in for a drink hoping to meet somebody. They’re ACTORS.

That girl sidling up to Jeff “so you were a cop” was hilarious because no former cop who didn’t leave under great circumstances ever wants to talk about it. If he does, something’s really off. But hey, he’s chatting her up and Tasha is annoyed – but not really.

“You hit the nail on the head,” Tasha responds when she’s asked if she doesn’t care anymore about Jeff meeting someone else. Call this marriage doomed for #MinuteMan & #LosetheFlower (see WEtv – we can give them our own mean hashtags – you can stop with the suggestions on the screen – and those annoying explanations tonight).

Julian gets mad attention from all the ladies and he’s playing it just to annoy the shit out of his wife. Later in interview, they sorta joke about it. But when it was happening, Blanca flipped.

“Look at him now, he’s just a piece of shit!” Blanca rages repeatedly while watching the interaction at the party. When she lost her temper and went outside screaming, she hurt her own credibility. It’s okay to be a little jealous (my husband actually likes it). And it’s okay to be territorial. But when she hears some of the actors laughing at her across the pool deck, she starts throwing things. Ticky tacky. Is that how you fight at home?

Tomas gets points for mentioning his wife to the women flirting with him – he was the ONLY spouse they showed mentioning that he even had a wife. I know Mai-Lee was jealous but she’s gotta be proud of him. Now it’s time to let it go because his body language when they were discussing it in the kitchen later said he’s done. He has nothing to prove. Yawn (not particularly good timing, but a silent way to make a point). Mai-Lee, you are beautiful and he loves you – don’t make yourself crazy for nothing.

Shaun gets the biggest kudos for his big apology to Sofia. He’s the first one to rush the pool deck when the guy asks to see Sofia’s bathing suit. “I know what his intentions were and I’d had it,” Shaun said. Dude, they hired these guys to flirt with you wife. Chill.

I didn’t like the way he talked to Sofia when he was pulling her aside, but I liked what he said to her about how he’d been wrong so I’ll forgive the approach. The guy is a little rough around the edges but he appears to be trying. Praying it’s real for Sofia’s sake. I really would like to see some of these couple succeed.

What the fuck was wrong with Mark? Okay, some random paid-escort-dude shoots your wife’s foot with a Super Soaker and you freak out and start attacking? His intentions were so clear – he was telegraphing every move. They must have waterproof mics and battery packs because that shit is expensive and they had to know somebody was getting pushed in the pool. Hope random dude left his cell phone in his car.

“I’ll whoop your ass!” Mark tells this guy who has no desire to fight with him over the #Superbitch (look another one!) he’s been entertaining for pay for the past hour. And then he tells Gloria he’s leaving with a little face tap that tells you physical altercations are not new to them.

But damn, my husband made me back it up to watch Gloria slug Mark in the face the minute she forced herself into a room with him. And are they in a closet for that whole exchange? So weird looking. But it makes sense because Mark is already packed and literally ready to roll. And it looks like it’s all over for #Superbitch and #KungfuMoron til he decides he doesn’t want to be filmed anymore.

His solution was to turn on the camera guy and slug him. Then all the producers jumped in because he was seriously fighting and it had to be broken up. Happy to report that according to tweets, Thinkfactory Media’s Creative Director Adam Freeman is just fine despite the fact he put himself between the talent and the crew and took a few nasty looking punches from Mark. Shouldn’t you get kicked out of camp for that shit? They certainly didn’t allow it where I spent seven summers at Camp Arrowhead.

No really, let’s talk about the production crews here for a second. You know, the ones sweating their asses off with 45 pound cameras on their shoulders all day long. I spent 60-plus days with about 50 of them so I’m qualified to opine on the subject. With the exception of the top producers on the set, everybody there is just doing their jobs. The cameras and sound guys are all simply doing what the earpieces are telling them. It’s what they have to do.

No really, sometimes you can tell from the looks on the sound guys’ faces that they don’t even like what they’re doing, but it’s their job. You can’t see the camera guy’s expression because he’s behind the camera – except when he’s switching “bricks” (batteries) or tapes as fast as possible with a production assistant, and occasionally you get a wink or smile.

I don’t care what kind of reality “star” you think you are, physically attacking the camera crew is not okay. I’d be lying if I said I never argued with a producer, but if a camera doesn’t turn away from you when you tell him to, it’s not his choice. The voice is his ear is saying “keep filming.”

And again, “Marriage Boot Camp” is not these people’s first rodeo. They were all on “Bridezillas” so they know the drill. As a fellow reality talent, I was embarrassed and would like to say I was impressed nobody hit back. Mark had it coming. But back to the show…

There is DOMESTIC VIOLENCE written all over Mark and Gloria’s marriage. She hit him first tonight and then when he’s freaking out on the crew, she’s yelling and reminding him that he’s a “man of God.” Say what? I’m not joking.

I want to know how many times the cops have been called to their house? Anybody ever started steps for a protective order? You don’t suddenly lose your cool and start whaling on your husband or wife unless that is totally normal and customary behavior for you. Scary thought for their big group of kids.

“You’re like a powder keg,” Elizabeth tells Mark. He goes off and Gloria tries to control it and makes every situation worse. Elizabeth says that while Mark’s “impulse to protect is good,” the execution is poor.

“Take a time out,” she suggests for the next time he starts raging. I think EVERYBODY needs to take a time out, but that’s just my opinion.

“Let the next bitch deal with it!” we hear Gloria scream at Mark. My ex-SWAT commander husband Bill’s comment at that point was “that boy needs a bondsman on call.” So does Gloria from the look of things.

I was surprised they let them go back in the room together alone, and not at all surprised to see Jim and Elizabeth boogie right up there to make sure nobody got killed. I wonder if their local Child Protective Services investigators have already started investigating Gloria based on other things that have been said about the kids on the show. “Whoopins” aren’t really in fashion anymore, Gloria. Perhaps you should try the “time outs” suggested to your husband in therapy tonight. A spanking is one thing but what we’re seeing now suggests a whole other level of problem in your family.

Please tell me that you aren’t really going to hug and make up after that? And the therapist suggested it? C’mon Jim. Isn’t it more like bump gloves and go to opposite corners? My husband says the cops don’t have time to respond to calls from the neighbors about Mark and Gloria’s house every weekend and they’d probably appreciate you just telling this couple to separate. Immediately.

Who needed to sit through evals after all that? We aren’t stupid and neither are they.

Shaun and Mai-Lee got the big praise. “Good job. Incredible,” Jim said to Mai-Lee about not rushing out to the pool deck to be an asshole like Blanca.

Tasha and Jeff are still a mess. “You are two very articulate people, but you are not articulating to each other.” Thank you Elizabeth, master of the obvious. But in interview, I was feeling sorry for weird Jeff again. He tells Tasha “Just hang in there, we’ll get it.” She doesn’t even look at him when she replies – deadpan – “Shut up please.”

Blanca was driven crazy by seeing Julian getting his needs met, but Elizabeth told her she did well by breaking out of her control bubble. So Blanca is all smiles in interview thinking she did well. Sigh.

I won’t waste time with Mark and Gloria other than to quote the only thing salient she said all episode: “Today we took 10 steps backwards.”

Next week it looks like the drama (and maybe the violence?) continues. We hear Julian finally stand up to Blanca and say “One day, I’m going to pack up my stuff and quietly leave.” Now there’s a cliffhanger. Obviously, I’ll be watching.


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