‘Kate Plus 8’ season premiere review: It’s off to a brilliant start… or is it?
Kate Gosselin began the new season of Kate Plus 8 episodes by showing a new side of herself. Charming, witty, and endearing, she managed to overturn a widespread image of herself as petty, mean, and selfish. The new episode took the family-minus-Jon to Australia, where…
Awww, I’m just kiddin’ ya.
Kate Plus 8 was tedious whenever it wasn’t painful. Accompanied by two helpers necessary to aid a mother who chooses to shepherd her children through two airports while wearing spike heels, Kate took the children to Sydney. There, they threw boomerangs, and watched fireworks on New Year’s Eve. Guess what? Cara had a meltdown during the fireworks.
To offset the even poorer image she accrued during her appearance on Sarah Palin’s Alaska, Kate emphasized her new-found adventurousness and good-sportiness. “I had a little redeeming to do,” she said of her Alaska livid-diva turn. “I’m in the mode of challenging myself,” Kate told the camera when she was safely back in her Pennsylvania home. Continue reading
Today Jon released a Twitter message:
As you may or may not be aware, I have been working for some time to remove my children from television. I do not believe being on TV is beneficial to any of them. They are no longer toddlers that are oblivious to what is going on around them. They are now six and ten, in school and desperately in need of a normal life.
Each of them has experienced negative effects of having their lives so public. Some are struggling with emotional and/or behavioral issues. My goal for my children is for them to have a normal childhood, and gain back their much deserved privacy. This is not about money, this is about my children. No amount of money is worth the price my children are paying. You cannot put a price on childhood. Money comes and goes, but you only have one childhood.
For those questions about money and support, I can say I am supporting my children to the best of my ability. All parties involved know the truth about this. I am and have been actively seeking employment. I have been barred from accepting entertainment deals that would generate income for my family due to contractual obligations. I am also actively looking for a job outside of the entertainment industry and so far, have not secured a position. In the mean time, I have been focusing on spending time with my children and providing a safe, stable, normal and private environment for them!
On October 13, 2010, I went to court to act in the best interest of my children- to remove them from television. The judge respectfully denied my plea, and granted filming rights to their mother. I honor the judge’s decision, but I do not support it. I will not stop fighting to remove my children from television. It is not a child’s job to support themselves, or a lifestyle, they need to be kids. I would like to apologize to my friends, family, and especially my children for not taking a stand earlier in my life and not questioning my decisions to have our lives documented and displayed. I will have to answer to my children for the rest of my life. I will have to live with this guilt the rest of my life. I am truly sorry!
Written by SeeingClearly at the IMO blog:
His message has some very clear points:
* Filming IS harming the children
* He has opposed filming for a long time
* Jon has been prevented from accepting entertainment deals
* He is actively looking for work
* He will continue to fight
* He regrets his decision to ever film
His message directly refutes the common arguments of the “fans” who refuse to acknowledge that continuing to film and display this family is HARMFUL TO THE CHILDREN. He took this to court and fought to get them off TV.
Those who claim that Jon is opposing this because he wants to hurt Kate or because he is jealous of the money are choosing to ignore the FACT that Jon wanted to stop filming at the end of Season 4! Jon was objecting WHILE he was receiving huge paychecks. Jon was objecting WHILE he was still married.
If TLC continues to film then they are clearly showing that they don’t care what the FATHER of these children feels about this. They are putting money before the rights and concerns of a father. Since when does a divorce mean you can edit a father out of a family? They simply chopped his name from the title, removed him from the payroll and kept going? They are not simulated characters- this is an ACTUAL FAMILY!!!
It’s clear to me that Jon is concerned for his children. He wants to protect them and he wants to provide for them.
Join the chat at: IMO Blog
Hot on the heels of the ratings news that “Kate Plus Eight” lost more than one million viewers between its first episode in June and its second that aired Sunday, comes another challenge to the TLC show. The Pennsylvania work permits allowing the six-year-old children of Kate Gosselin to be part of the reality TV show are being questioned by a legislator who has asked the state’s attorney general to step in CLICK Z’s STORY
The Fox Special “Unseen Footage”
“The California Department of Labor levied four citations and fines to RadarOnLine for the single night of March 17th 2009 when the first two octuplets came home with Nadya, their faces covered to protect the exclusive provisions of a contract entered into guaranteeing exclusivity to RadarOnLine. The first two babies were then subjected to video taping well after the two narrow hourly windows permitted under California Law. RadarOnLine, operating in a “pay for play” environment and not as a legitimate member of a Free Press, had not obtained the required “Permit to Employ Minors” and the Labor Department correctly ruled that the premature infants were, in fact, contracted employees in every sense of the word.
Eleven years ago my wife and I literally wrote and passed the law that governs the use of Premature Infants in the world of entertainment in California. My wife, Rana Platz-Petersen, is both a Registered Nurse and the Business Representative of Studio First Aid, Local 767, IATSE, the union which supplies all medical personnel, including Baby Nurses, in the eleven western States on signatory productions. Briefly, premature infants are not permitted to be employed until they are Full Term, at Full Birth Weight, plus fifteen days, and released for employment by a licensed pediatrician by a signed certification, and the infants are then eligible to apply for a Work Permit.
Furthermore, to protect these especially fragile new-borns, the Law requires one Registered Nurse and one state-credentialed welfare worker for every three babies up to the age of six weeks, and one studio teacher/welfare worker and one registered nurse for every ten infants from six weeks to six months old. These rules are readily available to anyone concerned about the welfare of infants exposed to the entertainment industry in California on the Department of Labor’s website.
On January 1st 2000 the much misunderstood Coogan Law, which only exists in California, was amended through the efforts of dozens of former kid stars who belong to the foundation my wife and I created in 1990, A Minor Consideration with the full cooperation of the theatrical unions and the largest producer’s association, the AMPTP. The new Coogan Law was expanded to cover all minors in Entertainment, changed the antiquated rules that permitted parents to literally own the income of their children, so that minors could actually own the fruits of their own labor, and a percentage of their separate income would be set-aside in a Coogan Account and available to these children on their 18th birthday.
It was with full awareness of the rules governing the California work place that I watched last night’s telecast of the “Unseen Footage” on the Fox Network. I was appalled by the chaotic atmosphere captured by the ever-present RadarOnLine film crew. A commercial enterprise is underway in the Suleman household in direct violation of the California child labor laws involving all fourteen children. The images and sounds of last night’s broadcast will never go away. Never. Worse, even more such images are forthcoming.
Even more chilling for me is the awareness that other children working in states outside California are being subjected to similar exposure that will, I promise you, have life-long consequences. Most of the children employed in so-called reality shows do not have California’s protections, which last night we observed in the breech, and it is a national disgrace that children employed in entertainment are exempt from federal child labor laws and have been since 1938 with the passage of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
I am ashamed by the Industry that raised me. I am ashamed of the national media that is now trafficking in the images of children who are incapable of providing Informed Consent and do not have the power to disobey.
My wife and I have played by the rules, even passing meaningful legislation at great personal and professional cost. Today is a day of reckoning. Surely someone on Capitol Hill or living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue watched last night’s broadcast. I am pleading with you to fix this, for if you cannot protect the most visible children in the world from what we saw last night then everything else you have to say from Health Care to the National Debt is meaningless because your silence means that the promise of childhood in America is dead.”
Founder and President,
A Minor Consideration
I’ve never heard of this small publication called the Chicago Sun-Times but I’m assuming they are considered reliable. Are they a tabloid? Are they up to the journalistic integrity of a publication such as the great People magazine? I don’t know but I don’t think anybody who make comments about Kate’s behavior was “jelus” or “out to bring her down. Some people just see her for what she is. A major bitch.
Considering TV reality star Kate Gosselin’s latest round of media interviews is orchestrated to rehabilitate her tarnished image as a mother — and even as a human being — it didn’t start out so well on the “Today” show this morning.
Kate Gosselin is interviewed on the NBC “Today” television program on Monday.
Sources from the “Today” staff tell me Gosselin was not the most pleasant person to be around on Monday. In fact, she was ‘‘a total b—-’’ to virtually everyone, said a longtime NBC staffer. ‘‘We get virtually all of the world’s biggest egos coming through here,’’ added the source. ‘‘But Kate was one of the most unpleasant I’ve seen in working here for many years.’’
Another staff member also said that when Gosselin learned there was a chance the cameras might catch sight of the large entourage accompanying her (likely to illustrate how much her life has changed becoming a celebrity on the troubled reality show ‘‘Jon & Kate Plus Eight’’), ‘‘she strongly hinted she would walk off the show,” before the interview with Today co-host Meredith Vieira.
The final note: As Gosselin was departing the “Today” set at NBC’s 30 Rockefeller Center headquarters in New York, she was overheard trashing Vieira. ‘‘Which is even more crazy,’’ added the second source. ‘‘Meredith very clearly, and in a straightforward way, asked exactly the questions you’d expect. She asked about the alleged affair with her bodyguard — which really seemed to piss [Kate] off, her relationship with Jon, how her kids were doing and whether ‘if you could do it over again, would you?’ ’’
‘‘She was swearing like a drunken sailor as she stormed out,’’ added the “Today” insider.
Why oh why couldn’t someone have gotten THAT on film? She doesn’t like questions? DON’T GO ON AN INTERVIEW SHOW YOU STUPID FUCKING BITCH! I’m so sick of her and I hope she just sealed up her last minute in this prolonged 15 minutes of fame she thinks she’s entitled to. I heard Jon canceled his appearance on E! WAY TO GO, JON. Silence is the best response at this time. Let the bitch be herself.
“Children can’t give consent. Only parents can — and these shows don’t cast adults with a high level of mental health.”
By Dominic Patten
There’s a scene in “Bruno” where Sacha Baron Cohen holds an audition for the “hottest baby photo shoot ever.” The intent is to reveal how fame-seeking parents will agree to anything — including putting their babies in fast cars without a car seat or next to “dead or dying animals” — to get their toddlers on camera.
It would be astonishing … if it hadn’t already become so common on the small screen.
On shows such as “Supernanny,” “Wife Swap,” “Denise Richards — It’s Complicated,” “My Dad Is Better Than Your Dad,” and “Kid Nation” and others, the harmful effects that come from constantly being on camera at a young age is becoming a matter of concern to child-care professionals and even fans of some shows.
And did we mention “Jon & Kate Plus 8”?
Even in this tabloid era, the disintegration of the Gosselins’ marriage and the effect the TLC show and the media attention is having on the couple’s young sextuplets and twins has family and show followers warning that things have gone too far.
Kate’s brother and her sister-in-law, Kevin and Jodi Krieder, both of whom have appeared on the show, recently told CBS that they believed the children are “being exploited” by parents obsessed with “fame and the fortune.”
While empirical data to gauge the effect of nonstop media exposure on children is hard to come by, the anecdotal evidence doesn’t look good — even if the ratings are great.
* Paul and Susan Young accused “Supernanny” producers of encouraging their five sons to exaggerate their unruly behavior for the cameras on the U.K. version of the series in 2005. “They left us with children that were more naughty than when they arrived,” the mother told the British press. The fact that the Young’s house might have been burned down by one of the children in 2007 certainly didn’t help.
* “The Real Housewives of Orange County’s” Gina DeLeon believes that appearing on the show had “a devastating effect” for her children, who were not on the show initially. When series regular Laurie Waring hooked up with Gina’s ex-husband George Peterson on season 2, he wanted to the kids to join him in front of the cameras. “They begged not to be on it,” DeLeon told TheWrap, but “George forced them to do it.” DeLeon added that the children “got teased and bullied at school, it was not a pleasant or growing experience for them.”
* Professionals like Charlie Sheen and Pamela Anderson have consciously kept their children off their reality TV excursions. Sheen even fought an unsuccessful legal battle to keep his young daughters off his ex-wife Denise Richard’s E! series. (For more on celebrity reality TV shows and children, see accompanying story.)
“These shows can open the kids to a level of public scrutiny, of shame and of failure,” notes Dr. Drew Pinsky, host of VH-1’s “Celeb Rehab and co-author of “The Mirror Effect: How Celebrity Narcissism Is Seducing America.” “You have to ask yourself if that is conducive to positive outcomes as they get older.”
Pinsky puts the responsibility on the parents and the producers.
“Children can’t give informed consent by definition, only the parents can do that — and reality shows generally don’t cast adults who have the highest level of mental health. They are severe narcissists who are obsessed with celebrity.”
“The permanency of the images of the children potty training, bathing and having temper tantrums on camera will open them up to derision and bullying as they get older,” says Paul Peterson, who starred in “The Donna Reed Show” in the late 50s and 60s.
For Peterson — who with his nonprofit group A Minor Consideration has been a long-time advocate of safeguarding Hollywood’s on-camera children — long-term pain is the likely consequence of short-term fame.
“Down the line, once the show is over and the cameras have gone,” he asserts, “there will likely be no help for them from predators and others seeking to take advantage of them.”
There is, however, some possible help on the way. “Jon & Kate Plus 8’s” treatment of the Gosselin children is now being investigated by the Pennsylvania Labor Department.
“We received a complaint, and an investigator has been assigned,” Department spokesman Troy Thompson told TheWrap. “Now we’re reviewing the case, which means interviewing the principles, interviewing anyone who has information and going over the company documents.”
At the core of the investigation is whether the Gosselins’ Wernersville, Penn., home constitutes a formal TV set, where the children are being instructed and directed. If so, it would bring the production under the state’s child labor laws.
If not — if it’s considered merely a domestic environment where they are being observed and filmed with little direct interaction with producers and crew – the state would have no grounds for violation, and the investigation will be closed.
The immediate consequences could be a fine — which, according to the state’s laws, can range from $200 to $1,500 — or “to undergo an imprisonment of not more than 10 days, or both, at the discretion of the court.” (For reality shows under fire, see accompanying story.)
TLC put out a statement on May 29, when the investigation became public, stating that it and Jon & Kate Plus 8 “fully complies with all applicable laws and regulations.” Attempts by TheWrap to contact Figure 8 Film and TLC were met with “no comment.”
This is not the first time that the regional authorities have taken a look at the realities children deal with on reality shows. In 2007, CBS’ “Kid Nation,” where children ranging from 8 to 15 competed in the establishment of a non-adult-supervised society, was investigated by a number of departments in New Mexico for playing fast and loose with the rules and safety.
The Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, in whose jurisdiction an on-set grease accident occurred, followed up on the victim’s parent’s claim that the program reflected an unsafe environment and disregard for labor laws. The state of New Mexico itself threatened to get involved with the show for the hours that children were in front of the cameras.
Ultimately, the state dropped its efforts, citing not having received a formal complaint.
As for Jon and Kate, the show went on immediate broadcast hiatus after the couple’s separation announcement and divorce filing. It’s not expected back on the air until Aug. 4 — if it reappears at all.
The couple did put on a united face on Independence Day for a family July 4th picnic at their home, seemingly unperturbed by their estrangement or the Pennsylvania Labor department’s investigation.
“No one can act like this is unknown, we have history here,” Paul Peterson told TheWrap. “When Danny Bonaduce, who knows the ways of this biz, allowed cameras into his life, it destroyed his marriage. It destroyed the Loud family back in the 1970s. Now it’s destroyed Jon and Kate’s family.”
“If you these children get in trouble in 20 years you can be sure they’ll be known as one of those kids from ‘Jon & Kate Plus 8,’ ” cautions Peterson. “That will define them.”
Waiting for the Phone to Ring
What can explain the failure of folks to make use of the communications tools as close as their computer or telephone? Is it just me, or do others wonder why the higher-ups at TLC, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, or the so-called professionals surrounding Nadya Suleman can’t bring themselves to pick up the telephone and call A Minor Consideration?
Is there some reason the team around Jon and Kate just can’t see their way clear to involving the premiere experts in the totality of the risks unique to children in entertainment?
Is it guilt or fear? Those are poor excuses when the welfare of dozens of children is at stake.
It is absolutely clear that mistakes have been made by parents and production companies alike, and that whatever advice and counsel may have been sought has been sickeningly misguided.
It is the height of corporate irresponsibility to employ children in profit-making endeavors and pretend that there are no consequences…now or in the future.
Generations of parents who exposed their flesh-and-blood to celebrity have learned to their sorrow that they didn’t know best.
State labor officials need to recognize how dangerous their lack of knowledge of the production process can be when children are employed, especially in reality shows, which are all show and no reality.
The legal advisors to those named above might want to take a look at the principle of Disaffirmance, for I can promise you that when the kids you are employing get around to calling us on their 18th birthday every dollar you think you saved by not treating them fairly will be multiplied a hundred-fold.
Count on it.
A Minor Consideration does not engage in “I told you so” if that is your concern. We deal in the present and the future as only we know it.
There is no excuse for child abuse.
And finally, if there is anyone in the White House who wants to know how the $68 million dollars committed to global child labor the President just announced might be better spent right here at home, you’re welcome to call, too.
Time to read this again. I encourage all to contact Mr. Peterson.
Time to Exit, Jon & Kate
August 27, 2008
The future of the “Plus Eight” is the real issue, Jon and Kate, and it’s time for you to listen. Your children are changing right before our eyes, and all of the changes aren’t healthy.
Consider us your Fire Alarm. The “former kid stars” that belong to AMC know this world better than anyone. We were very tolerant when “Jon and Kate + 8” first started, intrigued and sympathetic as we witnessed a loving mad house struggling to cope with an almost unimaginable blessing.
But, you know the old curse, “Be careful what you wish for because you might just get it.” Raising children is not theater, and we don’t care how much money is on the table. Little kids need secrets and silences, especially as they enter the world of schooling and making new friends.
Please examine the motives of all the people who give you advice and stand to make a buck off your children…including yourselves…especially you two. Not all change is good. For those of us who know what to look for, Fame has a subtle but corrupting effect on everyone it touches, and it has touched your children…and you.
It’s not too late to limit the damage. Remove the cameras from your house, dismiss the film crew and tell them thanks. Whatever deals you have made can be undone, and we have the lawyers to help you. Disavow any and all contracts.
What started as a documentary has turned into dangerous distortion of childhood, parenting, and what passes for acceptable risk in the age of the Internet. The bulls-eyes you have painted on the foreheads of your children will only grow larger with time.
Parenting is not now nor has it ever been a spectator sport.