Normal, psycho, and too much money, those are our three mother choices on the season finale of Toddlers & Tiaras. I’m bummed this is the last one of the season but it doesn’t disappoint. It’s ANOTHER Universal Royalty Pageant with our good friend and pageant director Annette Hill. She’s baaack! Hope you’re ready, Austin!
Who left this balding child home alone?
Guess who else is back? Mickie Wood from the episode with Jamie Sterling back in July 2009 (Mommy Has a Favorite and It Isn’t You). If you remember, Eden won that competition after being a total and complete brat the whole episode, but for this one she cleans up pretty well in the manners department. “My four year old daughter Eden is a star in the pageant world,” Mickie says, face contorting and eye winking.
We see Eden and Mickie as a fast-food restaurant in their home state of Arkansas as Eden signs an autograph for some fans – perhaps of TVgasm? Mickie tells us that because of the pageants Eden was “basically discovered,” and we see her in a multitude of scenes for a movie (?) and news programs – well, they did include The Insider so I use the term “news” lightly.
Eden is now four years old and she really is a pretty little girl. Blue eyes, blonde hair and pouty lips. Like Anna Nicole Smith but more coherent.
We’ll have to check back with you in your thirties.
Over in Thrall, Texas, we meet our psycho mom of the episode, Jeannie, who “has spared no expense on our daughter, we want her to win at all costs.” That sounds like, “We want our son to be head alter boy at all costs,” you know? Five year old daughter Janene is really not into pageants, so isn’t she lucky?
Jeannie started Janene in pageants five months ago and the truth comes out pretty quickly: “It was something I wanted her to do. I was hoping to change Janene into the little diva instead of the tomboy.” That never works, NEVER. But it gets worse.
“I describe myself as a pageant mom, I want all the attention,” Jeannie says. “Sometime Janene and I fight for that.” Why would you want attention because of your daughter’s hobby? Why don’t you just compete in pageants instead and cut out the middle man and the inevitable therapy? “But in the long run, I usually win,” she finishes. That’s great – beating your kid out for attention. You are totally f#cked up, Jeannie, don’t let anyone tell you differently.
Janene is at the kitchen table trying to put on makeup and her mother shows her a hot-pink dress that she wants Janene to fawn over immediately as in RIGHT NOW. “I’m a very competitive person, at everything,” Jeannie tells us. Yeah, except exercise and hair root-dyeing. “I don’t like to lose,” she says, teeing up an “especially weight” joke.
The dress is one they bought from Eden Wood – hahahaha! Sloppy seconds at a pageant where the original owner is going to be. Wonder if they’ll notice? “If we could beat Eden Wood in her own dress, it would be amazing,” Jeannie says with no concept of reality. Jeannie says when Janene doesn’t win or doesn’t do what she’s supposed to, “It gets a little heated.” Probably on Janene’s bottom!
We’ll strangle her with her own hand (me down).
Over in Falfurrias, Texas, we meet normal family that includes mom Jennifer and nine year old Brooke who is going to “rock that pageant.” Yes, yes, you and everyone else. Mom talks like maybe the collagen in her lips is new as she explains that Brooke has done about a dozen pageants. Brooke says she doesn’t think she’ll win the whole thing but it’s about having fun and gaining confidence.
What the hell? Who the hell is raising this kid correctly? Knock that shit off right now or she’ll become a productive member of society and never fit in with her peers.
Jennifer says, “It takes time to really dig deep into this world,” she says. Uh, what? I think she means the pageant world and really, it’s actually pretty shallow. It takes time to dig deep into your wallets is more like it.
If you see a worm floating in the water don’t eat it. It’s probs a trick.
Back in Thrall, Janene shows dad John her new bathing suit that cost them $350. Bitches, please, that is ridiculous. “Money really isn’t too much of an object, there’s really no max that we would spend. Whatever we need, we get,” Jeannie says. Which is interesting since John is surprised and somewhat peeved that they spent $350 on that bathing suit. Do these two ever talk to one another?
Daddy please help me.
Jeannie shows how stupid she is by interviewing that she’s spent about $15,000 on pageants in the past five months. What a colossal waste. Then she shows him the Eden dress and tells him she paid $2,000 for it. Then she gives us the whole bullshit line about how pageants are an investment in Janene’s future. What about space camp instead? How will this help her future?
“Maybe she’ll marry a rich man,” Jeannie laughs. Oh. My. God. Are you serious? Is that what you are preparing her for, marrying a rich man? What about taking that money and getting her science and match classes so she can go to M.I.T. instead? She might actually be able to become rich – wait for it – ON HER OWN THROUGH HER OWN ABILITIES.
Brooke and her dad are at the gym and she’s teaching him a routine for the pageant since she talked him into “competing.” Dad Shawn McClung (seriously, that’s their last name, McClung, as in “He’s really McClung!”) is being a great sport in participating and walking like a fashion model. He says he’s nervous about getting up in front of a big crowd but he can’t say no to his daughter. Spoken like a true dad.
Sweet Jesus, Mickie and Eden have an agent and she’s a freakshow. How has she not decapitated someone with her wild hand gestures? Agent Heather says that Heather is a star and has the “IT” factor. “We want her to be doing more movies and commercials,” Heather says. “Her clothing line needs to be about her….” Clothing line? Look what it did for the Olsen girls, they dress…oh, nevermind.
NASCAR tires with her face on em! Fried Chicken buckets with her face on em! Housepaint the color of her hair! WE WILL OWN THE WOOORRRRLD!
Mickie gives us the background on how much they’ve spent on pageants which is about $80K, so $20K/year for every year Eden has drawn breath. Man, I could totally re-side my house for that. The icing on the cake? They are making an Eden doll. Freakshow!
Mickie queerly tells us (seriously, what is wrong with her face?) that the Eden Wood doll is, “the brainchild [sic - no really, she used the word "brainchild"] of myself and her new manager.” The outfit they are using for the doll is the showgirl outfit, which ick. Heather says they are doing it because they have received so much “notoriety” for the outfit. That’s probably not the best choice of words – makes her sound like a whore or Lee Harvey Oswald. Also, they should sell that outfit separately – expand the brand.
Heather nearly takes flight with her hand flapping as she says the doll will be ready for the pageant. Are they going to sell it? Also, lots of girls get dolls made that look like them – think American Girl doll for sure (among others). They just don’t usually have them dressed as Vegas showgirls, but I’m sure Wal-Mart would be interested.
Woah. Lunch later.
Back in Arkansas, Mickie tells us that the top title at Universal Royalty Pageant State went to Taralyn of the recap Everything’s Bigger in Texas, Including the Sour Grapes! She is the little girl with red hair, peaches and cream complexion and an obnoxious mother. “Taralyn is very poised,” Mickie says, looking at the ceiling as though it pains her.
Turns out Taralyn is going to be at the upcoming pageant and she’s their biggest competition at this point. She still feels that Eden is going to go back and kick Taralyn’s ass but you never know.
Back with psycho and her daughter Janene! Jennifer tells us that Janene’s pageant coach runs $100 and hour and she sees her five days a week, and with a quick calculation I realize they are spending almost $2,000 a month teaching this kid to prance. And Janene has no interest at all.
Janene faces the wall as her mother interviews about the “big names” that are going to be at the pageant – Eden and Taralyn. Both of whom probably aren’t facing a wall right now. Jeannie doesn’t think Janene is going to have trouble competing against them but I beg to differ as does the wall Janene is trying to become a part of. When her coach asks why she doesn’t want to practice, she says, “Because I can’t stand it.” Well, at least you’re mom likes it, and isn’t that really the point?
The Blair Witch got a makeover!
Jeannie tells us the prize money for Grand Supreme is $5,000 and Janene is “going to get out there and do what she has to do to win it.” Give blow jobs? Also, you spent $15,000 in the past five months getting ready for this? Why not just give her $5,000 and keep the other $10,000 for yourself? Dumbass.
Jeannie gets in Janene’s face and says, “Shame on you!” No, Jeannie, shame on you for those mom jeans and jelly rolls all over your mid-section. She says they’ve put a lot of effort into this (read: money) and they aren’t going home without winning anything. We’ll see.
Back in Falfurrias (seriously, WTF is that name?), Jennifer tells us pageants can get expensive. Hey! This ain’t our first rodeo, sister, provide some color commentary that adds value! She says she’s probably spent four or five thousand dollars on this pageant alone. At least she has the sense to look embarrassed when she says this.
I’m sellin my teeth off one by one for this dream!
Brooke tries on a new blue dress and dad Shawn says it’s too short. He also like the other dress she had but Brooke loves it. So it stays!
Well, if Eden’s back, so is coach Christy! YAY! She calls herself one of Eden’s best friends and I’m sad this adult counts a four year old as among her best friends, although it probably does explain a lot.
We drink too many Capri Suns and gossip about the boys on the playground together before tinkling in our diapers a little.
Mickie explains that to get back on the winning track, she went above and beyond for the talent. This includes a bunch of Vegas-like props including an Elvis cut-out. She also brings out – remember? – the hand puppets that are actually just hands! Billy Bob and Bobby Sue or some other hilljack names. I can’t believe this kid is still falling for this. Or that she didn’t take some of the pageant money and just freakin’ buy real puppets.
Pageant day! There are 75 contestants so it’s going to be one damn long day. Annette gives us a quick overview of each girl – Brooke is great but facing some great competition, Jennifer “spent a lot of money to make sure this happens for Janene,” – this becomes important later, and Eden is “America’s favorite.” Count me as Canadian, then!
Janene is hating life because she’d rather be dead than compete and Jeannie says they are dealing with a diva today. Maybe your kid just hates what you are making her do. Just something for consideration.
Brooke is having her makeup done by Eden’s coach and I’m wondering if she’ll screw with Brooke just so Eden will win. I wonder if that ever happens?
Let’s get it started! Oh, man, they’ve got that creepy judge back again – you know, the one they found at the office supply store?
This is the first day of the rest of your life.
And let’s start the supportive mommy group. Jeannie is yelling at Janene for not fixing her socks because the judges will take points off if she doesn’t look right while walking around the ballroom. Whatever. She asks Janene to come to her so she can fix it and Janene backs away looking scared. Yeah, I would too. Jeannie tells Janene not to embarrass her. Too late – look in the mirror!
Janene is now sitting on her dad’s lap ad Jeannie says, “ENOUGH.” She’s pouting, crying, and clearly hating life. Finally Jeannie pushes Janene away and says, “Go ahead. Get away. Get away from me.” Even dad has his arms crossed. That poor kid.
When your kid gets preggers at 15 just to get out of your horrid home, blame yourself.
Annette tells us the toughest competition is going to be between Taralyn and Eden – cage match! Yeah, there’s no way Janene is winning anything today unless her mother buys it for her, spoiler-alert. Jeannie says, “It’s going to be no hold bars.” Well, you ALMOST had the phrase correct.
Speaking of stress, Mickie tells Eden that all the work, all the money, everything they’ve done is now on her today. “So don’t f#ck up,” she says. Well, she didn’t really say that but it was implied.
Eden gets onstage and she works it like a pro (insert joke here). She is really a beautiful little kid and you’ll be happy to know her ambition is still to “rule the world.” She didn’t really have a ton of sparkle to her personality and no bubbly-ness, but okay (even her mother says so).
Cling on to that youth, sugar. It’s never coming back. GET OVER IT.
Taralyn is up and she looks great – that strawberry blonde hair and blue eye combo is a good one. She looks like she’s having a ton of fun and it turns out her ambition is to be a veterinarian. YAY!
Janene is up and she looks very pretty but her walk is very stiff and she’s very nervous. I love her fuchsia dress because it has this collar that sticks up in the back like a queen from a Disney story. Jeannie says she knows Janene knows she didn’t do a good job and wasn’t winning. Have you met Jamie Sterling? You guys would get along FAB.
Jennifer says she’s happy to be at the pageant because it’s a way for them to meet “great girls and great moms.” She has no clue about the cut-throat world of psycho pageant moms, does she? Let’s hope it stays that way, she seems nice.
Brooke gets onstage and looks really pretty – she reminds me of a kid version of the Trish from Clean House. She has a great walk and seems very comfortable onstage. Sadly, her mother screams, “You go, girl!” You aren’t Jerry Seinfeld, pipe down. Dad tells her that it was the best he’d ever seen her do. Can you repeat that in front of Jeannie? Maybe she’ll learn how to be nice to her kid.
Back in Janene’s hotel room, she’s crying and whining as they pull her hair and shove her into her swimsuit. She clearly hates this whole thing while Jeannie interviews that this is a mother-daughter thing and they love doing things together. “We enjoy doing the makeup and the hair together,” she says, as we see footage of Janene screaming she doesn’t want to do her hair OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN.
Brush your tongue.
“It’s a girly thing and a chance for us to do something together without the boys,” Jeannie says, oblivious to the fact that Janene HATES THIS TO HER CORE!
Oh gross, swimsuit competition. You know my hatred of this…okay, the 18 month old with the 1920s swimcap was hilarious. The best part of this freakshow? The names. Ready? Zykeria Something, Paisley Smoot, Emerald Wood…and Ava Perez – hey, remember her? She had the dad that was waaay too involved in pageants and could sew like a dream?
Jeannie admits that everyone is watching everyone else, wondering who is prettier, who has the best dress, and “It’s just a never-ending cycle.” The cycle could end if you’d stop attending the pageants, moron.
Eden gets onstage and bounces all over with her pink feathered ensemble – those feathers would totally not last in the water! Taralyn is next and her swimsuit is kind of ugly. I think the black is too harsh on her and the fabric that connects to her wrist is just not working. Janene jumps up and her walk is stiff, her shimmy is stiff, and she doesn’t look comfortable up there at all. What a great mother-daughter moment!
Why is it in human nature to torture our children? Is it Biblical? Discuss.
Jeannie says Janene did very well in the swimsuit competition and they are probably in the top 10. Because clearly she’s watching a completely different pageant than we are.
Brooke is beginning to psych herself out about her swimwear competition and she does a great job. He swimsuit is shimmery blue with fringe and it looks really cute. She smiles and prances all over the stage like a pro and with a kiss she exits the stage. Turns out she’s upset because she made up her onstage routine. As if anyone would know!
I don’t think I’ve ever rooted against a four year old before. It feels kinda…fun.
Next up is outfit of choice or something and they are debuting the Eden doll, which looks nothing like her except the blonde hair and Vegas dress. “It looks just like her!” Mickie says. It really doesn’t.
Taralyn is up first and she is dancing like a champ – no, wait! There’s a guitar involved as well. Someone really practiced and her routine was dead on. Janene has on a western outfit that I would seriously KILL for (I would put Jeannie at the front of that line) because it has layers of fringe that shimmy when she does and it is sooo totally a Barbie outfit I must have it. Seriously, I would totally buy this just to wear around the house and clean since I couldn’t wear it outside EVER.
I’d Swiffer every day if I had this outfit.
Annette tells the judges they are “going back to Eden Wood” and I’m wondering what the hell was the delay? I’m guessing it’s on Eden’s side? They also mention they have to give her mom a few minutes to set up the props, which makes it sound like it is going to be a super-cool show.
Jeannie says all the props and doll were “interesting” which is code for “I hate that bitch and her rich mama.” It does take them a lot of time to set up and it’s sort of embarrassing. This better be good!
And it’s not!
It’s just Eden prancing around – no real routine, no dance steps, just her walking around the stage. She shimmies a little bit but all she did was walk around and shake her outfit. Even Jeannie says, “It was kind of boring.” Mickie says, “O-M-G! I couldn’t ask for it to have gone any better.” Are these moms watching a different show or something?
Brooke is now freaking out that she’s going to step on her dress…she’s dressed like the Queen of Hearts and it’s sort of cool with her black bob. However, I think her concern about stepping on her dress stopped her from really performing well. It’s cute, but her face reads, “I’M TOTALLY AFRAID!”
And so are we. For you.
When Brooke gets offstage, she cries because she did the wrong routine. How the hell would anyone know? Both her parents tell her she did a great job. Listen to them, not the voices inside of your head.
Next up? Dads! Most are just up for fun but a nice shout-out to the guy in uniform! Thanks for keeping us safe, dude, even so we can do things like pageants. Hey – there’s David Perez, Ava’s dad! They show Ava and her mom and mom is holding what looks to be another little girl. Jackpot for David, that’s for sure. The dad competition winner? Brooke’s dad Shawn. Because he’s “McClung!”
Crowning! Mickie looks great in her navy blue v-neck wrap-ish dress. Good for you! That is a very slimming look. Annette tells us the front runners are running “neck TO neck.” Are they conjoined?
First up – four to five year olds…Princess? Not our girls. Queen? Taralyn! That means she wins but she loses the bigger crown so she is out-out-out. Jeannie is surprised and Mickie is surprised and relieved because who could possibly beat Eden?
Next – nine to ten year olds…Princess? Not Brooke. Queen? Brooke! Yay! She wins! So she loses! Dad says he’s disappointed and mom says she’s not disappointed at all. Let’s go to the tape…Brooke is meh.
Universal Royalty Ambassador? Janene! What the hell did she win for? Jeannie is thrilled Janene won and I’m wondering how this happened. Until TLC kindly shows the Universal Royalty Pageant brochure and a note to the side that reads, “The Miss Amabassador Title is given to the person who bought the most ad space in the pageant booklet.” So basically Jeannie bought her daughter the title. Nice. Ironically, the cover is a picture of Eden.
Super-supreme with cheese-filled crust winner is EDEN WOOD! Go figure! Mickie says she’s thrilled and Eden fesses up she’s happy about the money but she’s more thrilled with the balloons. “They’re really fun and you can pop them!” Excellent.
Why’d you just give me papers and nothin to color em with? This is stoopid.
Brooke’s dad says they are going to take a break and more importantly, “We’re going to let dad’s pocketbook take a break.” Mom says they are going to continue to compete and probably get Brooke’s routines down more so she can win the title. Do these married people ever talk to each other?
Jeannie says she’s going to continue doing pageants with Janene, “And making this a pretty good career for her.” Oy. Good luck with that.
“Pageants have been good to us,” Mickie says. “We’re just a normal family that works hard so we can promote Eden.” Yeah, that’s not really normal. Mickie asks anyone in TVland if they’d be interested in supporting the Eden Wood doll. Yeah, that’s not normal either.
And that’s it – another stunner of a season, folks. Hope you enjoyed. You can also read my spite on the Ugly Betty recaps – get ‘em while you can since the show has been cancelled. What will I mock in my free time?