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Celebrity Zoo: Commentary on
The Surreal Life
, Season 4

Starring: Da Brat, Christopher Knight, Joanie Lauer, Verne Troyer, Jane Wiedlin, Marcus Schenkenberg, Adrianne Curry

Episode 1: Nobody Puts Mini-Me in A Corner, Except Himself
Episode 2: Misadventures in Babysitting
Episode 3: Rancho Kook-a-munga
Episode 4: Pole-dancin' and Brady-romancin'
Episode 5: Pitchers with Self-control Problems
Episode 6: Love Comes Walking In, or Maybe It's Just Ron Jeremy in a Diaper
Episode 7: Joanie Loves Tragedy
Episode 8: An Alan Smithee Production
Episode 9: What is Sally Jesse Doing the Other 364 Days a Year?
Episode 10: Has-Been Seems to be the Hardest Word

Episode 3 - 01/23/05


This episode begins with Jane narrating about how she can't sleep and it occurs to me that her voice and Verne's are very similar as I'm not sure who's talking until I see Jane start waking up her housemates. The housemates find out they will be going on a camping trip to a ranch. Verne is not enthused, however when they get to the ranch he earns the admiration of his housemates by trying (but failing) to ride a horse. The show is really picking tasks that are inappropriate for Verne. Marcus, master of the obvious, declares, "It must be tough to be a little person." Much drama ensues when the cast is given the choice of either branding a calf and getting a steak and lobster dinner or not branding a cafe and eating beans and wienies. Joanie says, "They say that cows are really dumb like fish" (or wrestlers?). Only Adrianne decides to brand the calf, and her action sends "former animal rights activist" Jane to the van in tears. Adrianne exaggerates her budding "soulmate" relationship with Jane throughout this episode and is quick to beg Jane's forgiveness. Who would expect a model to be so driven by food? That night, the cast has nothing to do other than sit around the campfire and get drunk - a recurring theme of The Surreal Life. Marcus exaggerates the threat of bears in the vicinity, freaking out Verne who knows he would be a tasty bear snack. But then Marcus asserts that he would sacrifice himself to save Verne, and Verne is touched by this gesture. I am just happy that Marcus has said more than two words in this episode. Joanie brings the room down by confessing a recent suicide attempt and the cast consoles her. Peter, in particular, makes an effort to boost her self-esteem, ending the episode with some Robert-Reed-esque wisdom: "You don't have to be entertaining all the time." Okay, Peter, but please get this gang to be entertaining at least some of the time!



Verne made headway in this episode. I appreciated that. I guess I'm jaded, but the emotional pleas of Marcus and Joanie did nothing for me this week. Marcus makes a big show of having Verne's back, but it was Marcus' "outback expertise" in spotting bear tracks that got Verne all wound up in the first place. Adrianne will sell her soul for lobster, it would seem. Kudos to the cast for opting for franks and beans instead of animal abuse. Jane is tops in my book for being an animal rights soldier. Branding is so outdated - that was nothing but a dude ranch put-on. Do you really thnk they brand every cow on a factory farm? Silly girl, cow-hater.

Coolia’s weekly rankings:

  1. Chris - gets points for removing his shirt twice and for comforting Joanie
  2. Marcus - finally spoke and showed concern for Verne
  3. Joanie - I give her points for having the courage to confess about her recent suicide attempt. I felt bad for her.
  4. Jane - exaggerated the severity of the branding incident. It's no worse than a tattoo.
  5. Verne - raises a little in my rankings for trying
  6. Da Brat - barely there, but she did console Joanie by telling her she was beautiful
  7. Adrianne - displaying Ryan-Starr-like drama queen tendencies

Nerdia’s weekly rankings:

  1. Jane - she's a sista of animal rights and I own her anti-fur song "Fur" on Tame Yourself
  2. Chris - still hot, centered and compassionate to Joanie
  3. Verne - at least he tried and he was less annoying
  4. Da Brat - didn't do much
  5. Joanie - I'm too jaded to be moved by her confession. It's sad but not atypical for celebs. She seems manic-depressive.
  6. Marcus - annoying exaggeration of bear tracks
  7. Adrianne - she's all about the lobster

    Your thoughts?

    Read Ape Culture's commentary on Surreal Life Season 1
    Read Ape Culture's commentary on Surreal Life Season 2
    Read Ape Culture's commentary on Surreal Life Season 3


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