Jon And Kate, What About The 8?

You may have heard all the brouhaha about the TLC reality show Jon and Kate Plus Eight that’s been in the news lately.  If not, a quick re-cap:  Jon and Kate Gosselin were a young couple who had a set of twins and a set of sextuplets, giving them a grand total of 8 kids before either one of them had even hit the age of 30.  They filmed a show for TLC chronicling their lives with all the little ones, and the special was such a success that they soon found themselves celebrities with their own reality show.  Apparently the sudden mega-stardom caused too much strain on the family, and the marriage did not survive.  Amidst accusations of infidelity and other ugly, yet very public issues, the couple filed for divorce earlier this year.  Scarcely a move has been made by either party since without full coverage from the media.

I watched a few episodes of the show back when the Gosselin’s were one big happy family, mostly because it was interesting to watch such a large family function as well as they did, err, as well as they seemed to function anyway.  But ever since the big family fall-out, things have been getting increasingly worse for the clan.  TLC announced yesterday that Jon would no longer be a major part of the show, and they were re-naming it Kate Plus Eight.  Ouch.  There are millions of people who follow the plight of the Gosselins; there are Kate fans and there are Jon fans, and then there are people who are mainly concerned for the welfare of the 8 kids.  The media has certainly vilified Jon, though it’s difficult to determine how much of it he has done to himself.  No matter how much the accusations about Kate’s controlling and domineering nature tend to be proven true by her behavior, she is always able to appear to be the better person through her public statements.  Maybe she really is the better person of the two, or perhaps she is more intelligent or has a better spokesperson advising her than Jon has.  But whatever the case, one thing is clear – those 8 kids they created together should not have to be caught in the middle of all of this, it’s disgusting.

The reason I decided to join in on the media storm and write about this is because of the latest chapter that broke yesterday – when TLC kicked Jon off the show.  His response?  He legally banned all production crews from the house he still co-owns with Kate, where the children live and the parents take turns visiting.  He has threatened to slap TLC with criminal charges if they come onto his property.  He hasn’t said whether this includes a ban on filming the children, but one can guess, based upon his actions, that it’s no longer ok with Jon that his kids star in a reality show.  It’s completely understandable – many people, including child psychology experts, etc, were constantly saying how unhealthy it was for the 8 kids to be filmed on a daily basis.  But Jon (along with Kate, back when they actually agreed on something) was always a staunch defender of the show and the fact that he and Kate had the kids’ best interests at heart.  But now that Jon got himself kicked off the show, it looks like he’s decided that reality tv is no longer a healthy lifestyle for his children.  And that’s fine and even makes sense, but one does have to question his intentions when his legal action to stop the show comes the very day that news is released that he is no longer a part of the show himself.  As a well-written gossip column stated, “Jon is acting like the kid who didn’t get picked to be on a team for the neighborhood baseball game, so he’s taking his ball and going home.”  Whatever his intentions, I am among the many former fans who just want what is best for the 8 kids while the rest of it goes away.  But before that happens, I am very interested to hear the spin Jon puts on his reasons for his actions – all of them.  He is giving a live interview on Larry King Live tonight on CNN, and I’m almost ashamed to admit that I will be watching (the midnight replay of course – there is no way this would ever take precedent over a new episode of The Office).  Then again, why bother watching the interview when I know the “highlights” will be shoved down our throats for the next few days – or at least until Jon’s careless behavior provides enough fodder to make yet another story…

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2 Responses to “Jon And Kate, What About The 8?”

  1. jamiahsh Says:

    You mean you actually got to watch a new episode of The Office as it happened? No spoiler but big episode next week. As for the ever invasive in your face reality shows, “real life” intrusive shows are rarely if ever good, especially for the children involved. Will there be a Kate Plus 8: 20 Years Later?

  2. mary911 Says:

    The whole thing is horribly sad. I never watched an episode, because I didn’t (and don’t) feel it’s right to profit off of your children as those two “adults” have done. It’s a shame that they were willing to risk their relationship on making a fast buck. Now look at them. The only ones suffering are their children. Ugh….I’m stepping off the soapbox…..

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