A stay-at-home dad (who hates the term "househusband") reviews this new reality show. It ain't no "Housewives"!
Jay Brown: As a stay-at-home dad, I was interested to see if "Househusbands of Hollywood" was worth tuning in for. Would these guys face the same struggles I do on a daily basis?
The show focuses on five guys: Darryl (partner of Cosby alum Tempestt Bledsoe), Grant (husband of Jillian Barberie-Reynolds), ex-Dodger baseball player Billy, former bank robber Charlie, and why-is-this-guy-on-this-show Danny.
First of all, I have no idea why they cast the two guys who don't have kids, Darryl and Danny. If you have kids, you can call yourself a househusband -- but "stay-at-home dad" is preferred. However, if you don't have kids and you're home, you're not a househusband, you're just married! (And, BTW, Daryl and Tempestt aren't even hitched -- although they have been together 16 years.)
Immediately, I could tell that there were only two guys I gave a damn about -- dad of two Billy and dad of one Grant. They were the only two I could relate to on any level. I respect them for what they are doing. They put their kids first and are working their asses off.
The third guy who has a kid -- Charlie (best friend of Ryan O'Neal) -- said the baby "happened by mistake" ... real nice! And his wife won't even appear on the show, so she is just on speaker phone in every scene barking out orders. I don't even remotely care about them.
Tempestt and her non-husband Darryl seemed like they were doing a skit every time they were on camera, bickering over him not throwing out the leftovers, etc. A word of advice: Hire a maid, Darryl, and be done with it. It looks like you can afford the help -- we pay someone $75 to come every other week and she cleans out our refrigerator. Then you won't have to worry about it!
The worst character of all was Danny, an out-of-work actor whose wife is an attorney. He built a "kegorator" in his house (a keg refrigerator) and made a sad excuse for a "man cave" in his garage. His wife sends him daily to-do lists via email. This guy was the biggest douche on the show. There is no reason for him to be there.
Charlie's wife also leaves him daily to-do lists. If you're a stay-at-home dad, you don't need a to-do list ... your kid is your to-do list. If my wife ever left me a to-do list, like she was the boss and I was the slave, I would be speechless. It's completely demeaning.
All the wives on the show except for Jillian seemed so dismissive of their husbands. To me, Jillian was the only one who seemed appreciative of what her husband was doing. When her daughter doesn't want Jillian to hold her because she prefers Daddy, I saw my wife cringe a little. She's been there.
The show should just focus on Grant and Billy. At one point, Billy's daughters (age 9 and 11) tell him "you don't work." That cuts deep. REAL deep. And Grant takes his daughter Ruby to play dates and tries to run her around and wear her out. He talks to a couple of other women there -- I know as a stay-at-home dad, you hope to God and you clamor for adult conversation! I could completely relate with these very real moments.
One thing that really bugged about the show was the fact they would throw these guys together in scenes. It was obvious they were not friends and they would not hang out if they didn't have a "call time" to be there. That felt so forced, contrived, and unrealistic.
I would tune in again for Grant and Billy ... because their storylines are actually relatable. But thank God for Tivo so I can fast forward through Danny, Charlie, and Darryl the next time around.
Did you watch "Househusbands of Hollywood"? What did you think?
|Jay Brown is a full-time stay-at-home dad living in Los Angeles. He has two kids, age 5 and 8.|