Last week, I complained that The Simple Life 2: Road Trip was becoming too routine, too staged. Thankfully, last night’s installment did an about-face and finally provided us with an episode that let the comedy develop on its own without the help of any obvious staging, and surprise surprise, the show was actually good. Paris and Nicole were funnier last night with their snarky comments than they had been all season long in their workplace sabotages. I just hope that Bunim/Murray finally realizes the key to this show is not the outlandish pranks the girls pull, but their city girl attitudes and inside jokes – the types only friends can have on a silly, Fox-sponsored road trip.As I’ve said before and I will say again, some of the best moments on this show come in the pickup – now renamed “Pink Panther” – as the girls travel the lonely highways. Last night, Nicole and Paris figured out how to use their CB radio and spent a good amount of time giving truckers woodies by providing sexual fantasies over the airwaves. Then again, just the presence of a female voice was probably enough to get these truckers going.
But there’s plot to be had, so we left these funny antics in favor of the Lutz-Carillo family farm, which inexpliquably was portrayed as some psycho, Leatherface-friendly den of torpor. Unfortunately, even the most elaborate lightning and thunder effects couldn’t disguise the fact that this family was actually just a regular, happy family unit. Paris and Nicole made a muddy entrance as the Pink Panther quickly became trapped in the quagmire that was the Lutz-Carillo front lawn. Next time, try the driveway. As father Lutz-Carillo and his sons worked to free the pickup from the unholy grasp of the mud, we quickly came to realize that this wasn’t the typical country bumpkin family. Unlike previous hosts in Mississippi and Arkansas and Florida, these farmers were clearly hippie farmers – the type that devoted a large chunk of the 1960s to acid and hairy armpits before moving off to a small Texas farm to live organically and make pottery. Granted, this is all speculation – Bunim/Murray only went as far as to say that the family was simply just weird – but it was clear that the Lutz-Carillos were not of agrarian roots. Just look at their kids’ names: Sky and Zephyr. I heard they were bummed that Moon Unit and Dweezil were taken.
For anyone still grasping for a proper image, I recommend studying Lily Tomlin and Alan Alda’s performances in Flirting With Disaster.
Paterfamilias Jim clearly did not show the rigorous work ethic of other farmers we’ve seen. Since he only had enough money to pay for one worker, he concocted the sort of scheme that only an ex-hippie would find logical: the girls would split the work hour by hour, allowing someone to rest while the other labored. Paris noted that the plan made no sense, and for once, I don’t blame her vacuousness.
The girls were supposed to start their job that afternoon, but it was rainy and drab outside, and who wants to do farm chores when it’s not sunny? Paris and Nicole nabbed Sky and Zephyr (both of Paris/Nicole humping age) and hatched a plan to sneak off the property. The guys were a little hesitant at first, but Nicole quickly explained that the logistics were in their favor. With no fences and an open driveway, a quick jaunt to town would be easy-peasy, especially compared to LA, where Nicole noted she overcame gates, security, LAPD, and good ole papa Lionel. It took a lot of determination, but when you need that heroin…
Jim and his wife chuckled as the Pink Panther zoomed off to town. Not that we expected them to be mad. They were probably so stoned at that point that the draperies seemed like a Farrelly Brothers movie. Meanwhile, Paris and Nicole made a bee-line to a tanning salon where they applied spray-on tans to the unsuspecting bodies of Sky and Zephyr. Of course, Nicole was in charge of this operation, and with an eye towards blotchy-chic, she managed to give the guys a freshly dirtied look while Paris cackled over in the corner. I don’t know of any tanning salon that lets customers handle the spray tools (then again, I’ve never been to a tanning salon, so who knows?), so I imagine that the ease with which the girls procured the spray on materials had something to do with producer intervention. However, the focus of this scene was not on Paris and Nicole smooth talking their way into being able to tan the guys; so this little element of producer meddling was fine because it wasn’t passing as reality. Take notes, Bunim/Murray.
Freshly bronzed, the quartet returned home for a lovely pork-centric dinner. Apparently the evening’s main course was once a beloved and prize-winning family pet. As ma and pa blabbed about how the piglets are like little puppies, Paris and Nicole tried not to vomit over images of Babe taking a cleaver to the neck. Later that night, Paris and Nicole brought the guys to a local watering hole and tried to hook them up with some girls. Nicole provided some words of wisdom about the fairer sex, noting that “girls are so shady these days.” She’s right. Sometimes the very girl you just spent all day with has a wildly notorious sex video that’s been massively distributed around the internet. Gotta watch out who you’re dealing with…
The next morning, the girls found a hen in the bed – courtesy of the producers, no doubt. Nevertheless, they cozied up to it in the latest trend of Paris/animal relations (note last week’s frog incident). The girls even took pictures of the hen with a little wig on. I don’t know how or why that hen was so calm. Chances are it had either gotten too big a whiff of Jim’s private stash, or it had come into the trailer to die.
The hen wasn’t the only farm animal acting peculiar. A dancing sheep spastically bounced around the yard, clearly hooked on Tomacco. And a tempestuous peacock spent a good amount of time squawking in the background. Jim encouraged all sorts of animal lunacy by dancing around for the sheep and cawing back to the peacock, even during breakfast. Paris and Nicole could not even hide their laughter, and neither could I honestly.
The episode ended on an amusing note as the girls drove off with an extension chord dangling from the trailer. Overall, this was a highly entertaining installment, but I was sort of hoping the girls would stumble upon Jim’s hidden marajuana crop, causing the show to take a grim turn as the Lutz-Corilla’s whip out shotguns and lock Paris and Nicole in a shack, sort of like on North Shore this week. But I guess I can only ask for so much.