Ah, Texas: land of longhorns, seventy-two ounce steaks, Anna Nicole and…hippies? What the heck are the Lutz-Carillos, Paris & Nicole’s new host family, doing out here? I have a feeling it might have involved a VW Vanagon and confusing an LSD blotter for a map on their way to a Grateful Dead show, but whatever the case, what a long, strange trip it must have been…but could it be any longer, or stranger, or longer, or—did I already say longer?—than ours has been, this season of the Simple Life?
Talk Dirty to Me, 10-4
The show opens with the girls en route in the pink pinkup. We must not be the only ones bored of this journey, as they start playing with the CB radio on the dash. As per usual, they can’t really figure out how to use the thing, so they must depend on the kindness of strangers. At a truck stop, a kindly road warrior to shows them how to use it, and even dubs them with a new CB handle: “Pink Panther.”
Back on the road, Paris gives her best Smokey & the Bandit impression: “This the Pink Panther, calling all truckers. Do you love it?” Nicole takes her turn, “Do you have any cream that’s edible that I can lick off you sexy truckers?” Anonymous driver guy says, “No, but I can stop by the store and get a bucket.” I am concerned that the cream the trucker wants to use is sold by the bucket and not in, say, an aerosol can like any good, decent person would use.
Nicole must not have taken her medication, because her multiple personalities all come out to play. She claims to be the police and orders her listeners to pull over to the side of the road, pull their pants down, and howl like a monkey. As “Bambi,” she entreats her fellow motorists for help, as she stuck by the side of the road with “nothing but me, my g-string, and my fluffer.” The response is overwhelmingly enthusiastic, as several men respond all at once: “Come on here, let’s go,” “Where do you want me to meet you at,” and disturbing, grunty vocables punctuated by a high-pitched “Pull over!!!”
Do the Hippy Hippy Shake
Time has come to meet yet another family, a tradition that is fast getting ooold, but I digress. The Alex (the mother) and Jim (the father) have lived out on their 40 acre farm for 25 years. Conspicuously un-southern accented, grammatically correct, and mellow, I find myself wondering just what they grow on this farm—mayhaps a bit of the kind bud, if you catch my drift. Or perhaps they’ve just got that Joni Mitchell “We are stardust, we are golden/we've got to get ourselves back to the garden” thing going on. The family, which also includes a couple of fairly photogenic young sons, gathers in the living room to discuss what chores they feel their new “farm workers” should do: feed the dog, clean out the chicken coop or, perhaps, the outhouse?
The girls arrive at the farm in the middle of an ugly rainstorm, however their truck gets stuck in the wet, black clay just as they near the house. Jim plods out with a big umbrella to greet them with a friendly, “Hi, are you our farm workers?” When the girl answers yes, he answers with such a totally Spicoli-sounding “Cool, cool” that I half-expect it to be followed by an offer to take a hit off his handmade bong or an invitation to look at his Floyd posters with a black light. But no, it’s followed instead by Jim asking if the girls are ready to work; a question that receives the sort of chilling, silent response that this recap is sure to garner.
Jim escorts them (plus Tink and Honey Child, who must have narrowly escaped being turned into sausage) to the house and gives them the tour. I think it’s rather nice, with a quaint, wood-burning stove, rustic crafts and lots of plants—particularly in response to the taxidermist’s paradise of the appropriately named Skinner family from episode 4. Well, we haven’t entirely escaped animal skins—the girls ask to see the boys’ rooms and the older brother, who looks like an attractive amalgam of Matthew Broderick, Jon Cryer, and Soap from Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels, shows them his snake. No, not his trouser snake, you perv—that might actually make this episode interesting. It is, in fact, a rattlesnake skin, but one that he caught and killed himself. After regaling them with his ant farm, he shares his opinion on the girls: “I think they think they’re gonna be nice enough. A little ditzy maybe.” He adds thoughtfully, “I wouldn’t be opposed to making out with either of them.” At last, an honest answer from one of these boys.
The girls retreat to the bathroom for one of their intelligent tete-a-tetes on Hegel—I’m fooling no one, they head to the potty to bitch. They claim to get a “weird vibe” from this sweet little hippy clan, and find them to be “creepy.” Whoa, ladies, chi-hi-hill out. Maybe Alex could whip up some “special” brownies to get you to relax. In the living room, the friendly folk joke about how with their truck stuck in the mud they might have to stay there a while, perhaps for up to three weeks, in which time they could help out a bunch. Again, jokes are met with cold indifference, as this recap shall be once posted (Is anyone even watching this show any longer? Whoever out there is still suffering with me, I give you a long-distance hug).
Jim tells the girls that they have a “super-cool sheep that dances”—okay, clearly, Jim’s tab is already kicking in—and Nicole responds, “That’s hot.” Jim agrees, “Yeah, it is a very, very hot sheep.” Okay, now I know what they mean by the creepy. Nicole is interested in getting to know the boys, especially their ages (was she busted for statutory once, because Nicole seems to have an obsession with this). We learn that Mr. Matthew Broderick/Jon Cryer/Soap (damn you, FOX, for your lack of titles!) is 22. “Perfect,” Nicole declares. We don’t actually learn the other brother’s age, but he’s not as cute, so who cares.
If there were any doubt in our minds that these guys are hippies, which there was not as I can practically smell the patchouli wafting out as they opened their doors, Jim informs them that both the boys were actually born in this house. “In the bathtub,” Nicole asks. Alex says that no, they were born on her bed and—wait for it—Sky was sitting on the bed when Zephyr was born. Yes, that’s right Sky was on the bed when Zephyr was born. When you start naming your progeny after geography, the elements, or fruit, then you are either a celebrity or a H-I-P-P-Y.
Bathroom conference for the girls again; they claim to be scared, as if they are “stuck in the movie Carrie.” They are relieved that they get to sleep in their trailer, although the big task is getting it unstuck, which is exactly what they go to work on. And by “work on” I mean Paris and Nicole basically act like haughty princesses while they abuse these nice people’s good graces, even deliberately splattering them with mud as they speed out of the trap in the truck.
With the truck unstuck, the girls powwow in the bathroom one more time, talking about how “they are freaking me out.” Suddenly they hear Jim outside asking, “I wonder who’s turn it is to wipe the manure out from underneath the chicken house.” “Theirs,” Sky says helpfully. As the guys laugh outside, Paris and Nicole realize with horror that the bathroom has an open alcove above that allows you to hear everything being said inside out or out.
Tan Your Hide
Alex knocks on the door and calls for the girls to do their chores. Nicole just yells for Sky, and he comes running and joins them in the bathroom. The wise Alex walks off, saying, “We’re not going to get any work out of these kids today.” Meanwhile, back in the bathroom, Nicole has hatched a diabolical plan, “Leave your parents. Let’s just go…Get in the car and just go.” Sky, good little hippy boy that he is, says sneaking out might be harder than she thinks. Nicole, however, says, “You don’t have any gates. I used to sneak out every day and I have security guards, LAPD, everybody living at my house, security cameras, everything. I know how to do that.” Now, I know this show is fairly staged, but Nicole’s “once-more-to-the-breach-of-security” speech is probably the truest thing she has ever spoken this entire show.
The girls collect Sky and Zephyr (yes, I’m still laughing at their names) and speed off in the pink pickup. Alex and Jim notice them taking off, but these parents are so incredibly mellow and/or high that they just laugh it off. Not exactly “The Great Escape” but it affords us a touch of drama before the next incredibly contrived TV stunt.
To what scandalous den of iniquity do Paris & Nicole bring their young male abductees? A tanning salon. What kind of crazy mischief is this? Is the wildest act these girls can think of committing with these hot young guys the over-exposure to UV rays? What, no rails of coke being snorted off supermodels’ thighs in the bathroom of a tony nightclub? Snore!
The girls themselves snooze away on tanning beds, affording us the requisite scantily clad body shots, while guys wait outside for them like idiots. Ah, the things men will go through for just the slightest sliver of a hope of a chance at sex. Paris & Nicole ask the employees how the spray tan works, and at long last, the girls decide to include Sky & Zephyr in on the action. They get Zephyr alone in one of the back rooms for some hot, girl-girl-boy…SPRAY ON TAN ACTION! Again, if it turned out to be what you had been thinking, it would have been far too interesting.
The girls do a horrifying, blotchy job of spraying—no, more like tagging, graffiti-style, both Zephyr and, later, Sky. They spray hearts around Sky’s nipples and a flower on his shoulder. They leave Zephyr with “Mom” written on his back, and a smiley face in his navel. The boys both look ridiculous, but they take it in stride.
They return to the farm for dinner, where Jim says that he was worried they wouldn’t show just to “get our goat.” Nicole & Paris say that no, they wanted to come to dinner, and from the looks of them both chomping away, they appear to be enjoying it. Zephyr then reveals that the pig they are eating is one that he raised himself for a stock show. Alex talks about how cute baby pigs are. “Like little puppies when they’re young,” she says, over a shot of Tinkerbell in pink booties and t-shirt, scampering about under the dining table. Paris looks appalled, then grows increasingly distressed as they continue talking about they had liked the pig. “I still like the pig,” Jim says, licking his fingers.
“I was gonna barf,” Paris says after dinner, as they walk back to the trailer. As Paris undresses Tink for the night, guess who shows up at the door: none other than Sky and Zephyr. They make plans to go out. “We’re gonna try and get you some girlfriends so you can get laid,” Nicole says, matter-of-factly. The guys laugh excitedly. “Because it looks like that hasn’t happened in a long time.” Cue pathetic Waa-wa-wa-waaaah sound.
So it’s off to the Spider House, a hang out for the young ‘uns in town. Paris & Nicole approach two girls and ask them to join the table where they are sitting having bevvies with Sky & Zephyr. Nicole gets Sky to display the “L.A. tans” they gave him, and he lifts up his shirt to display what looks more like advanced stages of melanoma. They then act confused as to why the girls did not respond positively.
They move on to another duo of dames, whom Nicole scares off by hard-selling them to exchange numbers right away. They move on to yet another pair, whom Nicole scares off by asking if they are Christians, and if they’re virgins. The Love Posse decides to take a break and reflect on what might be going wrong with their strategy. “Enough with the chit-chat,” Nicole says. Well, it was largely her chit-chat that had the babes running away in droves (like the viewing audience from this program). Nicole’s advice is to just move in right away, because “Girls are so shady nowadays.” Sky replies, “It appears so.” Beat. “Well, I’m not,” Nicole says innocently.
Suddenly, Paris appears from out of nowhere with one last attempt at a Love Connection for the night. She brings along a nice young man and has him sit at their table. This is followed by a looooong, very awkward silence. “Why don’t we go back to girls,” Zephyr says finally. The poor, nice young man walks off alone, hands in pockets. They return home unsuccessful, with the boys getting only good-night hugs.
Do Tan Droids Dream of Dancing Sheep?
Morning on the Lutz-Carillo farm, and there is a chicken in Paris and Nicole’s bed. How’d it get there? Probably some production assistant from the show put it in there because not much bloody else has been happening lately.
Paris lies down (providing a good upskirt shot) with the chicken (is there nothing she won’t get in bed with, if there’s a camera around) and starts petting it. And grossing Nicole out by playing with it’s “jiggly thing.” Great, now I’m gonna puke. They then decide it would be great idea to give the chicken a makeover. Yes, they break out the boas, the scarves, the hair extensions and dress up the chicken—they even start taking photos of it. Does this count as animal cruelty?
Alex and Jim go to fetch the girls for work, and the first thing they notice is that the trailer is a DUMP, with piles of clothes and accessories strewn about haphazardly. “How often does your cleaning lady come in?” Jim asks. The girls get dressed and go to do their first chore, which is to feed the chickens. They of course complain and ew the entire time, although the work is far from strenuous. They do enjoy feeding and playing with the chicks; Paris even kisses one (causing chicken fetishist everywhere to crow with joy). They even feed a pet peacock. The creatures they most enjoy feeding, however, are themselves. It appears that hippies make a damn good breakfast, because Paris & Nicole clean their plates at the nicely appointed table.
Jim takes them out to feed the herd and at long last, it’s time to meet the (in)famous dancing sheep, White Top. Jim informs them that she has her own website, “The Story of White Top.” I wonder is she actually the webmistress or does someone else emaintain her site for her? Like a stage dad, Jim commands White Top to dance, and of course she doesn’t. He hops around and gesticulates wildly, in hopes of getting her to perform, and then of course she doesn’t. The man is dancing far more than the sheep until finally the little fuzzball give a little leap and a click of a hoof, very Michael Flatley, Lord of the Dance.
And on that note, it is Paris & Nicole’s time to make their exit. They give a warm goodbye to the hippy clan, and when Jim says he’ll call them if there’s more work out there, Nicole actually smiles and says, “Cool, we’ll be here,” nicely. Of course she doesn’t really mean it, but at least she’s being kind enough to lie. Or maybe she suspects she can score some primo hallucinogenics from Jimbo. “I like this place,” Paris says as they drive off, sounding earnest. “Yeah it was pretty cool,” Nicole agrees. Suddenly, Paris gasps, realizing their trailer is still plugged in to the Lutz-Carillo’s bus for electricity. Paris gets out and tries to yank the extension cord out, but it won’t budge, so they decide to just drive off with it still attached and dragging behind. Yup, that’s comedy alright. It’s the kind you really need drugs to find funny. 1509 miles to go.
Feeling this show is fast becoming a bad trip? Ride it out, man, just ride it out. Send your questions, comments, incense and peppermints to snowflakegirl@fansofrealitytv. com.