Pop Culture

‘Kate Plus 8’ Is Back On The Air And Does Anyone Know Why This Is A Show?

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Today I will be recapping the premiere episode of the new Kate Plus Eight series that aired Tuesday night on TLC. I was prepared for crazy. I was prepared for awe. I was even prepared, as the mother of twins, to learn something. I got none of the above.

Kate Gosselin is back on TV with older kids and better hair to share her life with us. The twins are now fourteen, and the sextuplets are now ten. And while things seems crazy and loud and busy, things also look like…I dunno…life with a bunch of kids.

The title of the first episode was “New England Adventure,” and showed Kate, her kids, and a TV crew go on a paid vacation to Massachusettes and Maine. We learn that Kate has long hair now and she owns a bird. Fair enough. Moving on.

Kate decided to take her kids on a “low-key” trip to New England to see Plimouth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts (anybody out there know why one is spelled with an “I” and one with a “Y”? Teach me.) They planned to then drive to Maine and spend a few days at a beach house. Sounds awesome. Let’s go, Kate.

The first thing we learn is that the hardest part of traveling with her kids these days is packing. Says Kate:

“It’s harder now that they’re older…I used to just be able to pack their stuff, now they care about what they wear. I can’t pack without them. (Eye roll)”

Girl, do I hear you. When your kids start to have feelings about what they wear it is an enormous pain in the ass. And while I think the eye roll and complaining that Kate does is supposed to make me dislike her they don’t do that at all. I think the problem here is that Kate is too comfortable with the cameras (and, let’s not forget, she is trying to make a TV show), so she lets out what most of us feel but don’t show. I only watched a few episodes of the old show, but I always heard people bad-mouthing her. And no, I don’t think Kate and I would be BFFs, but I know for a fact that most of us want to roll our eyes at our kids multiple times a day. Actually doing so on national television is the part where I get judgmental about the whole thing, but not for the attitude itself.

From there we see Mady complaining about having her phone taken away, which, you know, of course she would. She’s fourteen. Then they get on the plane and we see a fairly peaceful flight to Boston, because, as Kate says amidst flashbacks to a previous, hellish flight when the kids were younger:

“It’s better now because they have their electronics.”

I’m going to get that sewn on a pillow. I’ve been flying alone with my twins since they were three, and life has never been better since they started being able to watch TV shows and movies for six hours straight. Thank you, DVD player. You’re my one true friend.

So they go to Plimouth and they dress like pilgrims and they feed animals and the kids say that they think the Pilgrims should have had air conditioning and right there I wanted to give eight high fives. The kids are great. They really are. I feel terrible that they are having their lives put on camera for the country to watch, though. Little kids on TV is not my jam. But, they are sweet and they act like every other ten-year-old and fourteen-year-old in the world, down to fights over who gets what bedroom in their rented beach house in Maine. I actually toasted Kate with my Diet Coke when in the middle of all the tears and yelling about who got the top bunk she said, “I surrender. You figure it out.” Bitch, yes. Clink clink.

The Gosselins end their trip with a visit to the world’s most kick-ass rope course, which Kate’s kids love and Kate can’t set foot on due to her fear of heights. But she says, “If I’m worried about my clipping and unclipping then I’m missing what the kids are doing. And I don’t want to miss this.” The whole segment on the ropes course was so sweet I pretty much died. One of her daughters, perched high up on the course, said,  “I’m really scared if heights, but I’m very very determined to do this.” And one of the boys says to another of her sons, named Aiden, “Good job, Aiden. It’s nice spending time with you.”

See? I just died again, came back as a kitten, died again from too much love, and then came back again as me.

All in all, Kate and her kids are just…normal. It’s a bunch of kids acting the way you expect kids their ages to act. And Kate is dramatic but she’s not out of her mind or anything. There were a lot of moments where I said, “I know the feeling, Kate.” And if that is the point of the show, to show us that Kate and her eight kids are just like the rest of us, then what’s the point? Now you’re just watching a random family live their day-to-day lives.

I don’t see who gets anything from this show except for people who are super wrapped up in the lives of the Gosselins. When the kids were babies, it was interesting because oh my God, what on earth do you do with six babies and twin four-year-olds? But now they’re just kids. Kids who go on vacations where parks, play areas, and restaurants are cleared out just for them. Kids who chat to the man who is paid to film them. And kids who get scolded about their table manners and cry about not getting to sleep in the top bunk.

Why are we doing this, again?