Quick Take: Jersey Shore, “Drunk Punch Love“
“This is not god. God is not your ego.” – Vinnie
Review: Jersey Shore, “Drunk Punch Love“
(S0218) Just when you thought things had finally settled down between Sammi and Ron for a little bit, cue the music…. dun dunh dunnnnh!
Well, let’s get right to it, shall we?
When Ron tells an as ever needy, whiny, and accusatory Sammi to “pack her shit and get the f—k out” after yet another squabble-of-stupidity stems from a night out to the club at Karma (and on a side note… is there ever a non-Sunday where the kids aren’t going out to Karma?), it reinforces once again that during these kinds of moments we’re not watching reality TV stars, but real people acting out in very real ways. I do fully believe that one of the reasons that Jersey Shore is so massively popular – as compared to, let’s say, a typical season of The Real World or with comparison to almost all reality TV programming today – is because this cast produces real and non-manufactured human drama and antics and related hilarity with regularity. I’d perhaps put an asterisk next to The Situation here as he’s the only cast member who seemingly is now “coasting” on his fame and has therefore ceded screen time to other cast members this season. And the caveat there is that he’s settled nicely into the role of helping to instigate drama with and between other members of the house.
Much of the episode is consumed with a seeming and impending “final” breakup between Sam and Ron. What’s kind of amazing to realize in the midst of the deep throes of it is that the final straw was instigated over drunken nonsense. Perhaps that’s more often the way real (as opposed to scripted) breakups go down though. A door opening to reveal the boyfriend in bed with another woman happens on TV; in real life it’s a descending pattern of small miscommunications, insecurities, and unmet needs that finally manifest itself in conflict only tangentially related to the true issues in a relationship.
The next seeming example of how Jersey Shore keeps it real more often than any other reality show is Jenni’s surprising reconciliation with Ron. It might almost be perceived as a brilliant tactical move that Jenni swooped in to make up with Ron exactly when she did (i.e. when Ron and Sammi are on the serious outs), but I think she genuinely felt compassion for a friend who she believed went through much of the same heartache with Sammi as she experienced with Tom. Meanwhile, Sammi’s worst and truest colors come out when she goes ballistic and toxic and ugly when she learns that Ron is talking to her “enemy” Jenni (prompted by who else? The Situation). It culminates with her clocking Ron in the jaw. Charges have been pressed for similar actions on reality television, by the way.
I must admit that I was hopeful that Sammi and Ron would finally break up and go their separate ways and be the happier for it. It has to happen, it needs to happen, it wants to happen, I rationalized. But, alas, no. Of course, no. It was preordained no as Sam and Ron are the kind of dysfunctional doomed couple that endure dozens of these incidents that cause a black hole of negative energy around them. As much as it’s fun to make light of the rest of the cast (and the show in general) it’s to their credit that they are able to stumble on (sometimes literally) with this Drama Supreme proceeding around them so often.
For example, Vinnie pulls off one of the smartest rebuttals I’ve heard – scripted or not – in a long time:
And meanwhile, the funniest line of the night comes in the midst of the melodrama, when The Situation saunters up to the bed that Sammi is miserably snuggled up in and asks, “Yo, you got any condoms?” And a very close runner up later is also issued by way of The Situation to both Sammi and Ron on the other side of their all-night drama: “If you want me to go downstairs for some make-up sex, let me know. ‘Cuz I’m already up.”
More thoughts on this edition of Jersey Shore:
Video: Jersey Shore, “Drunk Punch Love“
Check out a deleted scene from the episode, from MTV: