Sunday, April 12, 2009

Rock of Love Bus Finale: Bret Michaels Exorcises the Ghost of Zora Andritch

The three "Rock of Love" series have mostly reached the same destination. The final two women represent a "good" girl (this is all relative, remember), and a "bad" girl. In season 1 it came down to Jes and Heather. Jes was the "good" girl (actually, she was so "good" that I barely remember anything about her), while Heather was a brash stripper who got Bret's name tattooed on the back of her neck. The tattooing of a person's name on the back of your neck is of course the action of a "friend," not a romantic partner, so Bret chose good-girl Jes. Surprisingly, Jes dumped him very soon after the end of the first series. (Memo to Jes: Bret is the rock star. He dumps you, not the other way around, and you certainly do not dump a rock star for a clothing designer. Just see if you ever get invited back to a VH1 reality series.)

So Bret got back on that Rock of Love and tried again with a new season. By the end of season two he'd narrowed the field to "good" girl Ambre, who was either 32 or 39 (she forgot or something when asked) and was a television presenter, or something, and could not spell her own name (remember: "e" before "r" except in the word "remember"), and "bad" girl Daisy who was a singer in a rock band and possibly an exotic dancer who lived with her "ex"-boyfriend at the time the show was being made. Bret chose the good girl, and after almost a year (!) they ended things- apparently much more amicably than as ended with Jes.

Bad girl Daisy is getting her own show.

Which was good news for us, the viewers of VH1 reality shows, because the failure of that relationship made possible the latest season, "Rock of Love Bus." Apparently Bret believed that one of the reasons his "Rock of Love" relationships have been so rocky has been the fact that most of the season was spent in a single house, not giving the girls a real taste of the rock and roll lifestyle. This season Bret decided to take his possible romantic mates with him on tour, so that he could see first hand just who could "hang" with him on the road. This is not only a practical romantic consideration, it is a brilliant move entertainment-wise, as well.

It's also helped that, top to bottom, the women of season three were far, far worse than in past seasons. And when I say "worse," I mean "better." Perhaps it's because this is the THIRD season in which Bret is trying to pick a single mate from among a harem, but it really did seem like there were times when most of them just weren't really there "for Bret" at all. They were there to make spectacles of themselves, and log as much camera time as possible before being booted off, so they could start making personal appearances, or start their own clothing line or be cast in the latest version of "Charm School" or the beloved "I Love Money".

Ashley barely tried to hide the fact that she wasn't really there for Bret- she has the name of her BABY's father- a man she was still living and sleeping with- tattooed over her left breast.

Anyway, tonight's the season finale, and it's down to Mindy and Taya. You can tell just from their names which is the good girl and which is the bad girl.

Mindy is-- actually, I don't know exactly what she does for a living, but I do know that she is the "good" girl and has been the one to beat since the episode in which Heather and Ambre returned to interview the cast members and their ex boyfriends. She's generally pleasant and cute, and speaks with a slight Southern accent, but she can get moody and sullen. She's not above talking smack about the other girls, including her "friend" Taya, because she wants to ensure that Bret knows the truth about their less-than-totally-sincere-motives- not all of them are there for him. Like she is.

"Good" girl Mindy, upset that some of her competitors aren't really there "for Bret."

Taya is the Penthouse "Pet of the Year," and on almost every episode has worn a shirt that says so. She's also a "feature entertainer" and not a stripper, although she seems suspiciously adept at dancing with a pole (not sure what a "feature entertainer" is- do they use poles?). Most of the other women on the show resent her because she will not admit she's a stripper (almost all of them are), she has all her teeth and no visible tattoos or piercings, and they think she's a snob. Moreover, she seems to be a bit too good at singing and songwriting. She's also generally pleasant but pouts when she thinks everyone else is out to get her, which is most of the time.

Feature entertainer and "bad" girl Taya. Bret has no justification for not picking her.

It's obvious to anyone with eyes that Bret should pick Taya. She's the "bad" girl, but she's got enough "good" girl qualities, and Mindy has enough "bad" girl qualities, to make the distinction moot. She's also hotter than Mindy (Mindy's more "cute" than "hot"). Then there is the fact that, since the beginning of the modern age of the reality show, the "good" girl has always won out. Remember the disaster of the final episode of "Joe Millionaire"? Evan chose the dull Zora Andrich over the hot and interesting Sarah Kozer. Or, did Fox tell Evan to pick Zora? It doesn't matter, because the die was cast, and we've been living with the consequences ever since.

When "Joe Millionaire" chose drippy zero Zora over the hot and interesting Sarah Kozer, he set in motion a trend of "good" girl fetishizing that is ruining reality television to this day.

By choosing Taya in tonight's season finale, Bret Michaels was able to exorcise the ghost of Zora. He vanquished Jes, and he rinsed Ambre from his hair. It only took him three tries, but he finally made the right choice. He has struck a blow for men on reality shows everywhere.

That said, I genuinely hope things don't work out with Taya. My reasons for this are petty and selfish- I want to see another season of "Rock of Love."

Mindy pic source.

Taya pic source.

Sarah Kozer pic source.

Ashley pic source.

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