5 Stinky Thoughts on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew 2 - Episode 2: "Detox"

Each week I offer a quick recaplet on the latest episode of the second season of VH1's ongoing experiment in candid celebreality, Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew 2. The fun commences this week with Episode 202: "Detox."

Thought #1: Where'd Rodney Go?
Last week I described Rodney as a brittle spectre of a man. This week, he was even more of a ghost, a nearly invisible man haunting the furthest edges of the episode. The previews suggest that we'll soon see more, but -- even with all the familiar Jeff-nonsense and all the Gary-whackadoodleness -- Rodney's presence has haunted each episode in startling ways, like there's yet a big shoe to drop. I'm especially wondering how the rest of the rehabitants will or will not be able to connect with Rodney. So, I guess I'll keep coming back...

Thought #2: Severe Chronic Assholism, Exhibit 2B.
Good golly. That Vikki Lizzi. Just when we think she's taken her last bow before being safely locked down in some distant unit for the Terminally Not Famous...here she comes again, seeking the heat of the spotlight, for a set of uninvited encores. In this single episode, Vikki's high drama reprises comprised their own little three part mini-series. First, we have the basically hilarious romantic tragedy, "Touching Palms Through Frosted Glass" (a heartbreaking melodrama in which all that we see of Vikki is her palm, pressed against the glass, as Jeff and she holler sweet nothings to one another through the door jamb before being interrupted by the Wicked Witch of the Ward, aka The Fabulous Luisha). Then comes the hair-raising sequel, "They Stopped My Xanax," in which Vikki storms the forbidden Celebrity unit in search of her beloved, the barely conscious Jeff. ("All I could think of that I'm doing this for us," Vikki wails before noting, "And you're yawning!") Finally, the most terrifying installment of all: "Vampire Kisses, or I'm Gonna Suck Your Face Off." I know that my rant on Vikki -- that she's a drama-addict always over-behaving as though she's auditioning for the lead in a direct-to-dvd movie based on her own life -- is a familiar one. But this episode, jeepers. Vikki hit newish, pathetic heights in drama-mongering. It's clearly the behavior she relies upon to rationalize her own sustained substance abuse and also what she does to maintain the tight weave of her enmeshment with Jeff and his use. Thus, Vikki earns the spotlight -- for once -- as this week's exhibit in Severe Chronic Assholism.

Thought #3: Moments of Clarity with NurseShelly.
I love how kickass Luisha is, and I'm especially glad that they put a hardass rehab tech on the unit for the evening. (That other guy in the scrubs seems very sweet but, well, whatever.) Yet...as smart, and funny, and savvy as Luisha is: she ain't Shelly. I look forward to falling in love with Luisha, I do. But Shelly is my one true hero. I may crush on Dr. Drew but I want to be Nurse Shelly. And seeing Luisha in action this week helped me appreciate one of Shelly's subtle gifts: Shelly's always asking the Rehabitants questions, even when she's giving them directions. It's sort of like the Platonic method goes therapeutic. (And, sure, everyone sorta does this, but Shelly's really good at it.) When Shelly asks a question (ie. "Could you please give me your phone, Gary?") she does so in a way that both affirms the clear options while also, somehow, leaving the answer entirely up to the Rehabitant. She -- and we -- know what the "right" answer is (ie. "Yes, Shelly, here's my phone.") but somehow Shelly offers each question with little expectation of how the Rehabitant will answer. I love how this interaction style works to help the Rehabitant to take a little ownership of their own actions, even when they're basically doing what they're told. It's a great model for helping folks to relearn how to take simple but conscious action in their earliest days of recovery. Very adept, Shelly, very adept. I love Nurse Shelly.

Thought #4: What I Didn't Need To See.
G-A-R-Y = Grandiose Arrogance Reeducating You. To which I say: No GARY for me, thank you very much. (Though Celebrity Brain Injury Rehab would likely be a really surreal spinoff show. Should we look for it in 2010? And the interview with the shrink was pretty f'n hilarious. As was Tawny's line about "another facility.") I feel bad-ish for the guy, but really: No. GARY. For. Me. Thank. You.

Thought #5: Celebrity Rehab 2's Lessons in Sobriety.
Detox sucks. Or perhaps, given Amber Smith's gruesome experiences featured this week, it might be more apt to put it this way: detox blows. Amber's quickly becoming my favorite this season, sort of like Seth "Shifty" Binzer did on the last merry-go-round. Someone I barely knew before the show, but whose visibly painful (and terrified) journey through rehab made my cruel cynical heart crack open. And Amber's experience of detox this episode was just devastating. (And I must say I'm liking the more measured, explanatory approach to the rehab process demonstrated in this week's episode. This season already feels a little less stunty than the first few episodes last time around, though we are clearly undertaking a necessarily disastrous "outing" soon. I hate it when the Rehabitants go on adventures. Ah well, there will nearly surely be comedy gold. And maybe the police!)

SEE ALSO previous "Stinky Thoughts" on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew 2:
Episode 1 (Premiere)

And, yes, be sure to tune in next week for every addict's favorite thing: MORE!!!

1 comment:

Criticlasm said...

Busey really needs to go. Between him and Jeff it's surprising there is any air left for anyone to breathe. Two sides of a coin--sinner and savior--that they're both playing to the hilt.