MONDO EXTRAS

A Dr. Phil Primetime Special: Family First

So after all that telling us what he's going to be telling us, Dr. Phil tells us it's time to put the "Family" back in "America." So I guess we're putting "Familerica First" now, and we're starting with the Horvaths of New Jersey, who "want to be better parents" but of course are failing miserably without Dr. Phil there to tell them how. "That's why they let me wire their home with hidden cameras," Dr. Phil says, for real, and in an offhand manner, and with a straight face. Dr. Phil hopes he can change the lives of this family, and -- he points out again and again -- yours, as well. BUY MY BOOK. I'm sure I'll be returning to this theme at some point, but the interest he's taking in my family, and how screwed he seems to think it is, comes off a little, um, presumptuous. I don't really have a family like he means it, I have four alcoholics I met in college, a brilliant and kind fella, and a few hippies I trip over from time to time. And they're all smarter than Dr. Phil.

We pan across their house as Mrs. Horvath voices over, "If you looked at our house, on the average day, it would look like the average home," and right away she's lying to us, and herself, and Dr. Phil, because I'm looking at their house, and it's a fucking monstrosity. It's bright blue, like Thomas the Tank Engine, retina-scorching blue, with screaming red shutters and possibly an aluminum roof. It's god-awful, and maybe this isn't an average day, maybe it's somehow more hideous than usual, but I can't see it calming itself down for an average day. Sorry to interrupt, Horvath, please don't threaten to kill me like you do your whole family all the time. The hidden cameras show us things in quick succession as Mrs. H tells us that inside the house, just like its exterior, is "absolute chaos."

And yeah: See Mrs. H lying on her back on a gigantic sectional sofa the same color as their house, with a phone cord wrapped around her neck, screaming incoherently, as a mullet watches disinterestedly from another part of the sofa, completely nude except for some neon orange board shorts. See Mrs. H sitting in a slip with a scrunchie and white hose on the edge of her bed, screaming incoherently at the wall, while behind her a guy in blue shorts watches disinterestedly from a bright blue easy chair. See a little girl romping around on her hands and knees like a dosed Pomeranian on the sectional sofa -- which takes up three walls in the living room -- while her brother dances about screaming incoherently in response to Mrs. H screaming incoherently from off-screen. See the brother get physically knocked backwards by the force of off-screen Mrs. H screaming, "Stop the goddamned yelling!" I submit to you that the Horvaths of New Jersey could possibly derive some benefit from a little outside help, so maybe Dr. Phil is a good thing here, but...really the problem with the Horvaths of New Jersey is, um, Mrs. Horvath, from what I can tell. Does Dr. Phil ever do any Trading of Spouses? Because he could trade Mrs. Horvath for something that doesn't scream its ass off all the time, like a giraffe.

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A Dr. Phil Primetime Special: Family First

So after all that telling us what he's going to be telling us, Dr. Phil tells us it's time to put the "Family" back in "America." So I guess we're putting "Familerica First" now, and we're starting with the Horvaths of New Jersey, who "want to be better parents" but of course are failing miserably without Dr. Phil there to tell them how. "That's why they let me wire their home with hidden cameras," Dr. Phil says, for real, and in an offhand manner, and with a straight face. Dr. Phil hopes he can change the lives of this family, and -- he points out again and again -- yours, as well. BUY MY BOOK. I'm sure I'll be returning to this theme at some point, but the interest he's taking in my family, and how screwed he seems to think it is, comes off a little, um, presumptuous. I don't really have a family like he means it, I have four alcoholics I met in college, a brilliant and kind fella, and a few hippies I trip over from time to time. And they're all smarter than Dr. Phil.

We pan across their house as Mrs. Horvath voices over, "If you looked at our house, on the average day, it would look like the average home," and right away she's lying to us, and herself, and Dr. Phil, because I'm looking at their house, and it's a fucking monstrosity. It's bright blue, like Thomas the Tank Engine, retina-scorching blue, with screaming red shutters and possibly an aluminum roof. It's god-awful, and maybe this isn't an average day, maybe it's somehow more hideous than usual, but I can't see it calming itself down for an average day. Sorry to interrupt, Horvath, please don't threaten to kill me like you do your whole family all the time. The hidden cameras show us things in quick succession as Mrs. H tells us that inside the house, just like its exterior, is "absolute chaos."

And yeah: See Mrs. H lying on her back on a gigantic sectional sofa the same color as their house, with a phone cord wrapped around her neck, screaming incoherently, as a mullet watches disinterestedly from another part of the sofa, completely nude except for some neon orange board shorts. See Mrs. H sitting in a slip with a scrunchie and white hose on the edge of her bed, screaming incoherently at the wall, while behind her a guy in blue shorts watches disinterestedly from a bright blue easy chair. See a little girl romping around on her hands and knees like a dosed Pomeranian on the sectional sofa -- which takes up three walls in the living room -- while her brother dances about screaming incoherently in response to Mrs. H screaming incoherently from off-screen. See the brother get physically knocked backwards by the force of off-screen Mrs. H screaming, "Stop the goddamned yelling!" I submit to you that the Horvaths of New Jersey could possibly derive some benefit from a little outside help, so maybe Dr. Phil is a good thing here, but...really the problem with the Horvaths of New Jersey is, um, Mrs. Horvath, from what I can tell. Does Dr. Phil ever do any Trading of Spouses? Because he could trade Mrs. Horvath for something that doesn't scream its ass off all the time, like a giraffe.

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