Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Here are 9 Things I Observed During Oprah's Interview with Bobbi Kristina and the Houston Family


Since I'm a day two days late with this I'm sheepishly posting a few of my takeaways from Oprah's "interview" with Bobbi Kristina Brown and Pat and Gary Houston. Those of you who know me personally are flabbergasted I'm sure at my uncharacteristic tardiness.

  1. The roughly fifteen minutes Oprah got with Bobbi Kristina wasn't so much an interview as it was awkward face-time.  Oprah greeted her as "Lovely One". Did it make you cringe a little inside too? Bobbi Kristina looked terrified and appropriately awkward for a teenager that just lost a mother she was so close to that they would still spend the night in each other's beds. She told O the last time she was with Whitney she asked her to mother to come sleep in her bed and spent the night in her mother's arms. Overall impression was BK was saying a lot of what she thinks old people want to hear right now.
  2. When Oprah gets too religious it weirds me out. Don't get me wrong, godless I'm not. Still, I'm more a fan of Generically Spiritual Oprah and her "There's something bigger than all of us but we all call that something by a different name" bit. Yes, please sign me up for that.This other Holy Roller Oprah? Not so much. At one point O asked BK if she'd had a "visitation" from Whitney which is apparently a Baptist belief  that the deceased visits us in a dream dropping deep thoughts and saintly wisdom. I'm a Catholic so the only visitation I know of involved Mary, an angel, and pregnancy via the Holy Spirit. 
  3. Bobbi Kristina: Triple threat? BK told O the plan is for her to sing, dance and act. Oprah helpfully points out this is a lot of pressure proving sometimes O is for Obvious.
  4. Bobbi Kristina was thinking the same thing we were during Whitney's memorial service. Where were all of you when she was still here and she was hurt and she needed you.
  5. Say what you will about the softball nature of Oprah's interviewing technique, she still asks the questions you want asked. I'm paraphrasing but here's a sampling-- Q: Is Bobbi Kris some kind of orphan now living on the streets? A: Sort of. She's between homes, dividing her time between Whitney's and Pat Houston's house. Q: What was Bobby's ignorant ass up to at the funeral? A: Exactly what you'd expect his ignorant ass to be up to. He brought an entourage to a funeral and there wasn't any room for all of them. The Houstons didn't want him to leave nor did they have a problem with him being there in the first place. Q: Bobby's a dick right? A: No. Not really. Which leads to my next observation and I was most surprised by this as I'm sure you were too.
  6. The Houstons don't hate Bobby Bown. At least two of them don't. Pat and Whitney's big brother Gary don't blame him for introducing Whitney to drugs or have any interest in villainizing him. Their take on Whitney and Bobby as a couple basically boils down to it takes two to tango and/or smoke a copious amount of weed laced with cocaine. How bout that.
  7. Pat Houston says at the end of Whitney's life her biggest vice was Ray J. And generally looking for love in all the wrong places. Pat kept it classy, never using Ray J's name, which everybody knows is the best way to ward of Rumpelstiltskin-like reality show bottom feeders.
  8. We were treated to great rarely-seen clips of Whitney that haven't been shown ad nauseum. Producers did a great job finding touching clips of Whitney that showed her as Bobbi Kristina's mommy even when she was on stage "being Whitney Houston" as Kristina put it. 
  9. Even Oprah couldn't pull this off without it seeming kind of gross. It was just too soon for this. Whitney passed away mere weeks ago. I love Oprah and thought it was a good move by the Houstons to choose her as the first person to interview them. But the whole thing felt like a manipulation of her personal relationship with them. To be fair by going with an easy interviewer like O, the Houstons benefit too. The worst moment was at the end of the special when Gary Houston accompanied on piano by his teenage daughter sang one of Whitney's last singles "I Look to You". He sang valiantly but broke down in the end. Did we really all need to see that to understand the pain they're all going through right now? It felt like grief-porn. Not a good look, your O'ness, not a good look.