Saturday, December 13, 2008

Dec 8th episodes - Roloff Birthdays and breakdowns

The Dec 8th episodes were surprising in that the show that contained "the scene", the water cooler buzz if you will, was not the episode that featured the twins 18th birthday and Jacob being taken to the ER.

You can see the blog below for what happened with Jacob. The rest of the episode centered around the twins 18th birthday. Amy wanted to do something special for them. They weren't full of ideas beyond wanting a pool party, so Amy took their friend Jacob Mueller to lunch to plan. As Amy's narration explained that the twins have had the same friends since kindergarten and remained very close to some of those kids, one of them being Jacob Mueller...That sound you heard coming from television screens everywhere was fans groaning "WE KNOW! Unfortunately!" I don't think the Roloffs or TLC are in tune with the fact that when they mention how sweet it is that Jeremy and Zach have been friends with Mueller all of their lives that a large majority of the audience does not think that is a good thing. It's quality over quantity, er...amount of time. Jacob Mueller is the type of kid you would want to keep away from your kids. Ever notice how much more likable Jeremy seems in those very rare (and boy, are they ever rare!) scenes when he's not in the presence of Mueller? Anyhow...I'm getting side-tracked...

Mueller came up with ideas such as helicopter rides....ah remember the days of Chuck E Cheese, now it's helicopter rides...I guess you can plan big when you open your lives up to television cameras!

Jacob Mueller is taking some heat (or at least getting some funny looks) for his no girls stipulation for the pool party. Far be it for me to defend Mueller, but that conversation should be cleared up since it went by quickly.

The conversation went like this:
Mueller: Zach's lenient on every thing, but no girls....
Amy: We can have some girls
Mueller: Jer doesn't really want them either
Amy: Oh really? Ok
Mueller: You know why?...
quick edit away
Mueller: The thing with girls is we could have them come at 4 and leave at 7....I'm sure we could put up with them for 2 hours.
Molly: ...Isn't that 3 hours?
Mueller: Whatever, chill out.

Loved Molly's snark in that moment. She needs to keep on directing it towards the right person and all will be well.

As you could see from the conversation, they didn't elaborate on the "you know why?"

I don't think it was that unusual given that Zach isn't always himself around girls (which is not that unusual for some guys) and if Jeremy was just coming off a drama-filled relationship with Kirsten....I think a day with just the guys is not that alarming.

Instead of the suggested helicopter rides, they opted for gliding. As Amy, Mueller and anybody who has ever watched Jeremy and Zach predicted, it was something geared towards Jeremy more than Zach. I wonder if they could have found something that was more equal on the enjoyment level? He did enjoy it once he tried it, but spent most of the time looking nervous and uncomfortable. Poor Zach, the birthday parties always result in Jeremy having more fun, but hey at least, this party didn't end in the kids ganging up on Zach and spitting on him like birthday parties of the past.

Jeremy's quote of the night came when he was sharing his thoughts on turning 18: "The whole world has opened up. I'm legally an adult. I can go get a Costco card if I want."

The second half-hour episode focused on Amy's reunion with sisters Kathy and Cindy, and her younger brother Roger - they showed pictures of him when he was a child and into his teens - it answers the question of who Jeremy takes after in appearance - Jeremy and Amy's brother looked very similar when he was Jer's age.

The siblings alluded to the fact a few times that as adults they aren't very close as they live in different states and hope the trip would be a new start.

A brief scene back at the farm shows Matt attempting to get the kids to start cleaning up. Jacob is mopey. When Matt tells Zach to clean, Zach angrily brings up the fact that Matt apparently pays Jeremy ridiculous amounts of money to clean. There was mention of the laundry room, but earlier Jeremy appeared to be working on the same pile of clothes that Zach was now supposed to be putting away.

Back in New Mexico, while Amy and her siblings are having fun horseback riding, Amy says she received a call from an upset Zach because everyone got into a fight over cleaning the house.

Amy on the phone is heard saying: "The thing is, I can't sit here and quit every thing, Zach. I need to be able to move on after you guys are all gone. I can't just quit my life. I'm in New Mexico doing a celebration birthday for my sister and I've got chaos. And I'm a messed up mom because I didn't do well by you guys."

What happened next was shocking and completely unexpected because Amy is usually so tough. She breaks down emotionally. Her sister asked if she was alright, Amy answers no. Amy was upset enough that her sister wondered if someone was injured.

There is a very somber mood as Amy and her siblings drive back to the resort. Amy's brother tries to provide some humor by asking if she needs another spa. Amy says she needs the sweat lodge to release the negative energy that was suddenly thrust upon her.

Roger asks: So the troops are getting a little restless back home?
Amy answers in a very serious, very sincere and very raw tone: No, it's more. I think Matt...and, um, the kids are terrible.

Roger: You have terrible kids. Terrible. (obviously not serious)
Cindy: Not as terrible as mine.
Amy: I do. I didn't do well raising them. Totally crummy.

It was a very intense to see Amy so vulnerable and emotional. Of course in-vehicle camera being inches from her face and the once again brilliant sad mood music of Joey Newman made it all the more intense.

Amy's emotion wasn't over. Amy reveals that she spent the night crying. The next morning, at 4:30, they head out for a Native American spiritual ceremony. Amy states that she is there for clarity and help with a lot of big decisions.

During the ritual Amy is asked what she believes in?

Amy: I want to thank God for the faith that he has given me and knowing that he is always with me. I'm thinking that maybe I'm not doing well with helping my boys."

It was very emotional and came completely unexpected. I have to believe Amy's breakdown was about a lot more than just an argument back home about cleaning the house. It appeared to be a lot deeper than that. I felt bad for Amy. I can't imagine a worse time to have a breakdown like than a reunion with your siblings. Usually that's a time when everyone talks about how wonderful their kids are instead of confessing fears that she hasn't raised the boys right.

I appreciate the moments of Amy's raw honesty. It was another interesting hour of viewing. Amy's breakdown and her reasons for it was definitely was the hot topic of the week.


sean said...

i think when zach thought so little of her time that he would bother her on her trip and ruin her vacation it hit her that the boys aren't turning out to be good people.

zach can't cope without her. amy is well aware of how selfish jeremy is, he cares about nobody except himself and mueller and was on his way to making it into the national enquirer, a source of pride for every mother. jacob has some problems too.

i think it hit her all at that one time that they have a lot of money now but the boys aren't good people. they're rude, inconsiderate and selfish.

Dupree said...

I really like Amy and it was hard to watch that episode. No one likes to admit that they should have done things differently and no one is a perfect parent. 18 is an age that makes you reflect on how you've done as a parent simply because of the "legal adult" thing. Really, Amy has done it alone. While Matt has filled the role of provider and all around fun guy, Amy has had to be the disciplinarian and she isn't that strict from what we see. Tough, but interesting episode.

Michelle W said...

Dupree - I agree with everything you said. I like Amy. My heart went out to her when she was having doubts.

Good point about the importance of 18. I don't think she has the pride in Jer and Zac that she hoped to have and she blamed herself.

Anonymous said...

My boyfriend and I watched this episode and were shocked at the boys 18th birthday party. We felt that someone (maybe Mueller?) had told Amy that Jeremy (and possibly Zach?) are gay. We were unsure until we saw the boys playing in the pool and decided that straight 18 year old boys don't pile on top of each other like that and generally want to have girls at their parties.

Ronald said...

Anonymous, that's...ridiculous! 18 year old guys wrestle all the time. Having a day with the guys for a party is not shocking.

Fenwick B. Justice said...

"If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads." (Leviticus 20:13)

Anonymous said...

What century are you from Fenwick?

Fenwick B. Justice said...

I am from the 20th Century, and I come in peace.

pumibel said...

Hahaha- they probably just didn't want all the drama and squealing girls bring to the party. Or maybe they thought Jeremy would get more attention from the girls than Zach, which would dampen the party. Nothing points to homosexuality. And why is Amy so despondent about the boys? Her daughter is obnoxious- I cringe at the way that girl talks to her mother. I would never let my daughter talk to me like that, especially on television. I don't watch the show as much as I used to because the kids are just becoming jerks. I got very angry at Matt with his crappy money management during the remodel and the turmoil it put the family through. I don't know how they stood living in two rooms like that- three teenagers! That is just nuts.

Timothy said...

Pumibel, I know what you mean about the kids, but Matt is at least trying. Several times this year Matt has tried to lay down the law with the kids, but Amy shoots him down.

I think they both love their kids, but Amy tries tuo hard to be their friend instead of a parent. Especially to Jeremy and Zach. Matt is trying.

tamra said...

Reality can be a very hard thing and the reality is no one is perfect. I do think there needs to be a balance to the wonderful childhood that both Amy and Mat have worked very hard to provide, and the training every child needs to be a productive adult.
And yes, part of that training is cleaning and chores around the house. What is amazing to me is at age 18 Zach called his mommy to "tell" on his daddy. Ridiculous and childish beyond all reason.
For Amy to allow Zach to make her feel guilty for spending time with her siblings demonstrates how much she needs to get away and allow Mat to deal with the boys. There is a time in a boys life when moms need to step back a bit and the dads need to step up. As for Molly, if I were she I would not want to clean up after those boys either, but she should not follow after there slothful footsteps.

Anonymous said...

Now that we know about Mike's sudden passing, I feel like that's the reason Amy broke down. He was always there to help out and keep the kids in check when Matt and/or Amy would go out of town and this time he wasn't.

My boyfriend and I thought the same thing about the all boy party! It was a little peculiar. What was with the birthday bumps in their bedroom turning into spanking instead? We had a good laugh about it.

Anonymous said...

Oh and the "I can go get a Costco card" line is classic! Definitely not the first thing I thought about when I turned 18.

Eric said...

I thought the bedroom spanking was more peculiar than the no girls at the party. I think they just didn't want the drama of having girls at the party, you know what happened when Sarah came over after Jeremy was seeing Kirsten. At that time Jeremy looked exhausted at all the girl drama.

Perhaps at the time of the party Kirsten and Jeremy had just broken up but they couldn't have a party without inviting her because of other girls that would come that might have wanted Kirsten there or not there?

I think politics with Kirsten was the reason. They must have still been friends because I saw Kirsten at Mike's memorial service next to Jeremy and at the fire they had after it.

The Costco line was classic! Jeremy can be very random. The best part is I don't think Jeremy intends for it to be funny. Ha.

Anonymous, just a tip, when you Comment choose Name/URL and leave the URL line completely empty. It's nice to know who I'm responding to.

The bedroom spanking (and pinning Jeremy down on the bed to do it) wasn't what I was expecting. They were very enthusiastic about it. Ha.

Bebe said...

Oh yeah, that's a good point Eric. it was painfully awkward when Sarah came over, I almost had to change the channel!

Also, I tried to post under Name/URL and it didn't work for me.

Bebe said...

Oh wait, it worked! Thanks for the tip Eric.