Patti Blagojevich, wife of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, made her reality TV debut tonight on NBC’s “I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!” As promised, I watched the show so you wouldn’t have to.
The show’s two-hour premiere was alternately annoying and entertaining. Blagojevich was one of 11 fringe celebrities on the show. The others were actors Lou Diamond Phillips and Stephen Baldwin, former NBA player John Salley, former pro wrestler Torrie Wilson, reality TV stars Sanjaya (FOX’s “American Idol”) and Spencer and Heidi (Montag) Pratt (MTV’s “The Hills”), washed-up model Janice Dickinson and the Frangela comedy duo from VH1’s “Best Week Ever.” I’m not sure when Lou Diamond Phillips’ star fell so low that his career needs an infusion of reality TV, but at least he gained back an ounce of respect after beating Dickinson for title of camp leader for the first week of the show. As camp leader, Phillips gives orders and gets foot massages from Sanjaya all week. (I wish that last part wasn’t true. It’s pretty creepy, isn’t it?)
Blagojevich got swept away by a river current in the opening minutes of the show and ate a tarantula during the second hour. (She said the tarantula had a “musty, yeasty flavor that’s not good at all.”)
Blagojevich was low-key during most of the show, generally staying out of the limelight except when Spencer Pratt asked her why her husband is facing prison time. Pottymouth Patti kept it clean as she rattled off the usual Blago talking points, which I won’t regurgitate here because I’m not Rod’s defense attorney. But she seemed to win over the dumbest “celebrities” in the group, Dickinson and the Pratts.
“I look at them as the Heidi-Spencer of politics,” said Spencer Pratt, who added that he would vote for Rod for president. The born-again Christian Pratts then prayed with Patti for strength, support and victory over oppression. Patti cried as viewers collectively gagged.
“It’s been probably the worst — the worst — six months of our life,” she whined.
Yeah, and thanks to Rod Blagojevich and his predecessor, George Ryan, the past six years have probably been the worst in Illinois history.
I’ll keep watching the show because I promised to do so, because somebody has to take one for the team and allow Blagophiles to stay informed without having to watch bad reality television. I’ll post daily updates here on The Bread Line, but you also can follow me on Twitter (I’m “thebreadline”) for live updates.
Now I’m off to watch the news and Conan O’Brien’s debut as host of “The Tonight Show.” Feel free to post comments here about what you thought of Patti and Conan’s first nights in their new gigs.