No More Celebrities on 'Celebrity Rehab'
Dr. Drew is a great doctor with a thriving private practice. He has worked on his radio show, Loveline, for well over a decade and gives very professional, intelligent advice to his callers and listeners. I grew up in Pasadena, California, and grew up listening to the show. He was already a big name in the L.A. area with a long list of celebrity patients. He did not need a show to launch his career and amid much speculation that he is some snake-oil salesman looking to get rich, I truly believe he has chosen to commit his life to helping people overcome addiction and ultimately, saving lives.
His argument for the show is that usually people who need treatment the most will not seek it without incentive. If feeding their egos and wallets is what it takes to get them in a safe place where they at least have access to the help they need for their disease, then it is worth it. Last season, Dr. Drew clarified that while he treats the patients, he has no part in the casting or production of the show. So who cast Tom Sizemore and Heidi Fleiss in the same season, two people who formerly dated and whose relationship ended with Fleiss filing charges against Sizemore for domestic abuse?
How about the return of Steven Adler this season, the first season where Jennifer (House mother for 'Sober House') appears as part of the staff. For anyone who missed this a few years ago, Adler relapsed on heroin during the taping of Sober House. Rather than leave the situation to the bodyguards, Jennifer decided to fight with and further enrage Adler, who responded (according to Jennifer) by verbally and physically abusing her.
In this season's premiere, Staff member Shelley informs Jennifer of Adler's return to the show. Jennifer loses it, cries hysterically, and almost has a full blow panic attack. While these sort of moments make for interesting television I cannot imagine they are conducive to sobriety. If Dr. Drew was involved in the casting and production, he would have been stripped of his license to practice medicine after the first season.
Two Sundays ago we got a chance to meet some of the “Celebrity Rehab” season 5 cast. Wait, is this season about addiction to keeping your name relevant?? This looks more like "Rehab" with Dr. Drew season 5; I don't see any celebrities. First up, we meet Amy Fisher who is best known for shooting a woman in the face some years ago. Now, she is a porn star with a "wonderful" husband and three kids. Her drug of choice is alcohol, which she primarily uses to decrease the horror of her porn star workday.
During her first discussion with Dr. Drew, she complains about the tabloids "latching on to her" and how she was unfairly portrayed during her trial. She can't explain why she shot Mary Jo Buttafuoco in the head, or what her feelings were during the time; she just brushes it off like it's no big deal. I had never heard of Jeremy Jackson before Sunday but I have read he was a cute little kid on “Baywatch." He injects himself with so many different types of steroids, including hormones given to cattle before they are slaughtered, and other really strange stuff I’ve never heard of.
Even Dr. Drew seemed utterly horrified as Jackson lists the drugs he takes, which sounds like a shopping list for suicide. I have never heard of Sean Young either but I was informed that she was a legitimate actress at some point. I also learned about her walking on the Warner Brothers lot dressed as Catwoman and demanding the role. Most people wrote her off as totally insane, but after enrolling in this season of Celebrity Rehab she can now play the "I was just really drunk" get-out-of-jail-free-card.
Bai Ling claims that she is from the Moon. She is a raging alcoholic despite the fact that she is allergic to alcohol. Being that she is from the Moon, even if she never picks up a drink again, I don't think batty Bai will ever fit in on this planet earth.
The relatives of celebrities cast kicked-off last year with Frankie Lons (mom of Keyshia Cole), so is Michael Lohan a step up? Nope, he's worse, although he beats Frankie for most famous daughter. He says he only started using when he worked on Wall St. where it seemed to be raining cocaine. I feel bad if he really, truly, honestly, wants help for himself because my bias towards him will not let me take him seriously on this show. Why did Celebrity Rehab accept Mr. Lohan in the first place when he is notorious for abusing his daughter's fame? I guess it’s just getting harder and harder to find anyone willing to do this show.
And finally, that episode we learned that Steven Adler will be coming back. Steven was always one of the most entertaining patients because he just looks like such a mess and he needs subtitles in order to understand him. Many past cast mates dont' seem like they are actually addicts and just looking for money and a little fame (e.g. Rachel Uchitel), but no one can dispute that Adler is a true drug addict.
LIke the other seasons, they will detox, argue, scream, leave, relapse, etc. But this season, it is clear: Celebrity Rehab can't even get D-list celebrities anymore. Maybe this is a sign that it's time for this show to get the axe. In a perfect world, I would have liked to see Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, Amy Winehouse, Rush Limbaugh, Tiger Woods, and Britney Spears, forced to live together for a month at the Pasadena Recovery Center. That would be some show.
RIP Jeff Conaway and Mike Starr