I'm Disappointed in America: "The Houstons: On Our Own"

Grief can cause the strangest reactions in people; there’s anger, shutting down and those who keep moving as if nothing ever happened, until the weight is too much to bear. In the case of Whitney Houston’s family, it seems as if adding a few cameras and crew to their everyday lives was the answer, because Lifetime premiered “The Houstons: On Our Own” the other night and new era of train wreck TV was born. While Whitney’s most hardcore fans are still coping with the death of their idol, the show must go on for her family, despite the pain they must feel and the disarray their lives is in.

The ringleader of this circus is sister-in-law Pat, wife to the incredibly high Gary and now-guardian to out-of-control Bobbi Kristina. I’ve had issues with Pat since the announcement of Whitney’s death; all of her movements were seemingly done to preserve the gravy train and not the emotional state of Whitney’s mother and daughter, practically every movement since that fateful day in February has found Pat pulling the strings and nearly every inch has been questionable; the leaked information, the Oprah interview and now the show. I can dig that Whitney kept the lights on all of these years, but moving on also means creating your path, but her path is tied squarely to the estate.

It happens that estate is tied to the drinking arm of Bobbi Kristina, the sole heir to whatever fortune Whitney left and at 19-years-old, a spitting image of her parents’ bad habits. I only saw minutes of the show, but what I did catch showed a visibly impaired Bobbi Kris at a family dinner, guzzling a bottle of wine and incoherently speaking to family members and doting on god brother/boo Nick Gordon. I know the bottle was there and she was taking it to the head, but I don’t recall liquor slowing a person down so much and delaying the speech in the way hers was. Her behavior seemed more like someone on the Aitch, Horse, Boy, Smack, Junk, Heron, the Shit, or if you prefer, Heroin.

We’ll skip over the fact the girl is underage and drunk on television, there has to be some responsibility from the network on that, but Pat is completely unconvincing as the glue to hold the family together. Where is Cissy during all of this mess, did I miss her? I guess no one thinks it’s a good idea to call the girl’s father, even though he has some issues of his own right now, she may need her daddy to step in. The tabloids have told the tale of Bobbi Kristina and Nick since her mother’s death, but to see it was something different, it is a bit creepy, but he could be what she needs to get through this tough time. Sure, the timing is bad and her access to a few million doesn’t hurt either…

Lifetime has definitely made a conscious effort for the Negro eye as they premiered that God-awful Steel Magnolias remake a few weeks back and now have cast Bobbi Kris as the new “Bad Girl of Reality TV”, the only difference between her and Snooki is that she’s on a crash course with addiction and death. I’m pretty sure the Houston clan doesn’t want to deal with another tragedy, but the tragedy here is actually going this route for exposure at the expense of this child’s life. Somebody get Dr. Drew on the line!

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