Friday, January 14, 2011

MTV Hits 'Jersey Shore' Again

Sammi, the Jersey Shore roommate whom everyone
loves to hate--excepting of course, Ronnie, her man.
OK, I admit it. I watch Jersey Shore. It reminds me of those carefree days of my youth, back when a career was the furthest thing from my mind (though I was always a writer, since I was maybe 12. I'd pound away on my father's old typewriter, a metal Remington that weighed a ton, and I know I finished one novel, though it was probably only 100 pages long. And it was about gangsters! I wish I had a copy of it, I'd love to read it. Hopefully I'd see that my writing ability had improved somewhat in the 31 years since. [We had just gotten HBO at the time, this was 1980, and I had been heavily influenced by The Godfather film, which HBO was playing like crazy at the time. The Deer HunterEscape From Alcatraz and Jaws 2 also were getting a lot of play around the same time -- that was the ultimate summer for a movie nut who just got HBO!] I also wrote horror, as a young writer named Stephen King had also grabbed my attention, and I had always been a horror fan, perhaps due to watching Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? as a young child?)

Back to the Shore. "The Jersey Shore is a term used to refer to both the Atlantic coast of New Jersey and the adjacent resort and residential communities," according to Wikipedia.org. According to MTV, it is something else. I add this for those of you who have never watched the show -- and who haven't clicked the link in the first line.

(Bret Easton Ellis has an essay in the January Playboy, as noted here, which I plan to write about; his review is more about The Hills than the Jersey Shore; I think he snorted too many chemicals and forgot what he was writing about. I do love some of his novels, and I thought the film of The Informers wasn't half bad, though the baby producers cut from the film some graphic stuff that was in the book.)
Anyway, rather than write one gigantic post encompassing everything I think about this show, I will focus on one character each week; this week, it is Sammi, who seems to be turning into Angelina in that everyone else in the house seems to hate her. (Snooki was my first choice for the start off, but seeing that she gets arrested for public drunkenness in the next episode, I am going to wait a week for her.)


For those who don't watch the show, or have missed Season Three, here is a quick rundown of the first two episodes which have so far aired:

Episode one: Leftover tension from Miami spills over to Seaside when unresolved issues among the girls explode on the first night. And new roommate Deena gets off to an interesting start when she "accidentally" gets naked in front of The Situation.

Episode two (the one we are up to): The fight between Sammi and JWOWW causes tension in the house. Ronnie and Sammi continue to isolate themselves, missing the first family dinner. And when Ronnie decides to hang out and have fun with the rest of the house, Sammi feels all alone.

Here's the cast (and MTV hasn't updated the site for season three of one of its hottest shows -- can you believe it -- to include the new roommate, the one replacing Angelina, who was way to cool for school and walked away from her 15 minutes -- and potentially millions of dollars in endorsement deals, club appearances and such; some cast members are swimming in it now, especially Mike "The Situation."):

CAST

Select a Season 
  1. Marlboro, NY

    Nicole is looking to meet the man of her dreams. When she goes to the gym, she goes in full makeup, hoping to make a splash with all the toned men. Her height has been as much of a strength as it has been an obstacle, and it will...   Read More »
  2. Johnston, RI

    Pauly D is Rhode Island's most well known DJ and keeps a tanning bed in his house. He orders gel by the case and does his hair twice a day -- once in the morning and once before hitting the town. For Pauly D, cleanliness is close to...   Read More »
  3. Franklin Square, NY

    When Jenni walks into a bar, the guys yell "J-WOWW!" She may have a boyfriend, but down at the Jersey Shore all bets are off. Impulsive and spontaneous, Jenni is a party girl with zero self control. Wherever she goes, drama is...   Read More »
  4. Staten Island, NY

    Mike may have a sensitive side, but he has plenty of game to go with it. He knows what he wants from his summer at the Jersey Shore and is not going to let anything stop him from getting it -- even his roommates. The way he sees...   Read More »
  5. Bronx, NY

    Ronnie might find himself in a brawl or two, but he is a lover who just wants to have a good time. He comes into the house with one rule: Don't fall in love at the Jersey Shore. But as the summer goes on, he finds rules are meant to be...   Read More »
  6. Staten Island, NY

    Vinny is a self-confessed mama's boy and natural entertainer. He knows how to get a laugh from everyone he meets. Having just turned 21, Vinny has been waiting for this summer his whole life and is ready for a wild time with no...   Read More »
  7. Hazlet, NJ

    Sammi has been a serial dater all her life, but she's now single and loves every minute of it. Her friends call her a sweetheart, but when it comes to guys she is a heartbreaker. Just ask Mike and Ronnie.
  8. Staten Island, NY

    If Angelina has something on her mind, it'll be out of her mouth before you know it. She always has something to say and doesn't care what anyone else thinks. The question is, how long will her housemates put up with it? Not long, she is gone from the third season.


    Now, Sammi...from the very beginning, this girl from Hazlet, N.J., came off in the best light, as a real person --- a beautiful young woman, bright eyed and bushy tailed, as the saying goes -- when she walked into the first Seaside summer house on Season one. She was well grounded (and well put together) unlike the other girls, who gave off rather bizarre first impressions.

    JWOWW introduced herself as such, and strutted around like she had just walked off the stage of a strip joint. She was playing a character. Angelina was hideous from the get-go, so pretentious and so in love with herself, she earned our loathing before even arriving at the house. And Snooki, a flabby dwarf with too much hair and a big mouth, couldn't wait to advertise her alcoholism, getting drunk and leaping into the hot tub on the first night, I believe slipping out of her way too small bikini and trying to make out with the guys, who, one by one, stepped dripping onto the concrete, preferring to shiver under a towel than further raise the temperature of the hot tub by giving the rather unattractive, babbling drunk Snooki a whirl.

    So Sammi was and has been very much (up until later on, in Season two) girl-next-doorish. At the beginning of episode one, for about two seconds, she did show some interest in The Situation, but he would later blow that out of proportion due to jealousy after Sammi, sensing The Situation only wanted shallow lust play, worked her magic on Ronnie and he slam-dunk fell under her brown-eyed, long-limbed spell. The rest of the crew were jealous of Sammi and Ron from the get-go.

    There was a lot of drama in the group -- by now describing themselves as a family, minus the brat Angelina, who left both the first and second seasons after the first few episodes of each; she was out for good this season, thank God. In season two, the crew went down to Miami. Trying to act like true BFFs, Snooki and Jenni (who lost the JWOWW as she got to know her housemates; it was a sort-of defense mechanism, I think -- and Jenni and all the girls stopped dressing like strippers unless they were preparing to go out clubbing) wrote Sammi an anonymous note about how Ronnie had cheated on her one night. Sammi in fact had previously asked them to keep their eye on the attractive, well-built guy. He did fool around but was really drunk -- and can be plainly seen on the show making out with assorted women at various Miami clubs. It was more like drunken slobbering than anything else, but by writing an anonymous note instead of taking Sammi aside and talking to her, Snooki and Jenni created a drama that tore the house apart. Sammi has not been friendly with either of them ever since; her anger at Ronnie dissipated like snow on a summer's day.

    Jenni WOW!!!
    That is the source of the tension between them, Sammi on one side, Snooki and Jenni on the other, and even the ultimate cause of the physical, knock-down brawling that Sammi has gotten into with Jenny more than once.

    Now, as for the dynamic between Ronnie and Sammi, it is clear they are infatuated with each other (they are too young to be in love -- unless that is the old codger in me speaking. But those two, in my opinion, are not ready to settle down). Ronnie plainly is preoccupied in season three, where the team is back on the Joizee Shaw, and I don't think likes Sammi's strategy, which is to avoid and insult everyone else in the house. Why did the two of them bother going on the show if that is how they are planning to behave? Well, I guess the flares of drama -- including violence -- make for good television.

    But something happened in season two that changed my opinion of Sammi, for the worse, and it has nothing to do with Snooki and Jenni. One evening, while Sammi and Ronnie were heading home after a night out at a bar, they were followed by a jealous, vociferous couple, obviously much older than the MTV neophytes. The guy was picking on Ronnie, who works out and looks to be made of bulging iron. I have to say, Ronnie tried his best to ignore the guy and avoid pummeling him unconscious, which he could have handily done and is what I would have probably done had I been Ronnie.

    Sammi, rather than following his lead, decides to squirt some lighter fluid on the situation, calling the other couple names and acting aggressively toward them, which in turned angered Ronnie, who, eventually, lost it and shoved Sammi, telling her to can it.

    "Domestic violence!" the asshole bully, seconds away from the beating of his life, shouted. One thing led to another, and Ronnie had had enough. Fists raised he went at the guy, shouting, "Put your hands up!" Sammi, having achieved what she had set out to do apparently now decided to quiet down and virtually disappear like a little mouse.

    But the bully's wife or girlfriend jumped right into it, getting in Ronnie's face while her boyfriend, a coward and -- well, that p word that women absolutely hate to hear -- tried landing shots by punching around and over his lady, using her body as a shield. What a man's man.

    Ronnie got him, finally grabbing the balding, big-mouth punk, dropping him and punching him repeatedly in the head and face while the bastard's lady started scratching and pulling at Ronnie's T-shirt. Then Sammi finally leaped into the fray, pulling that battle ax away and letting Ronnie split his knuckles on jerk off's head.

    They made it home soon thereafter. Holding an ice bag against his fist, Ronnie was in the position of now having to deal with an hysterical Sammi, who was upset because he had shoved her in an effort to shut her up so he wouldn't have to fight the guy.

    Ronnie proved his mettle. He is a big strong guy, but not a bully. He didn't want to fight -- but was literally shoved into it. I lost all respect for Sammi that night. She put her man in danger, than raised a "domestic violence" issue  out of what was really a simple reflex action to try to head off a bad situation. Sammi, you get what you deserve. As beautiful as you are, you are trouble. Ronnie, you can do better.

    I finally finished this post!

    Snooki, the alcoholic, is up next...maybe next year we'll see her on MTV's sister channel VHI, on Celebrity Rehab 4! And she ain't the only one...


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