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Houstons’ Reality Show: Disturbingly Intrusive

Last night, the premiere episode of Lifetime’s new reality show “The Houston’s: On Our Own” hit airways, evoking strong responses from viewers and media critics. Before the show debuted, critics questioned the Houston family’s decision to bring the media spotlight even closer so soon after the death of Whitney Houston in February. The main objective of the show appears to be to present a more positive image of the grieving family than the drama published in tabloids, but some would argue that the grieving process is not something that belongs on TV.

“’The Houstons: On Our Own,’ feels exploitive,” argues Gerrick Kennedy of the Los Angeles Times. “Even if the family invited viewers into their homes in an attempt to control the conversation surrounding Houston’s rise and fall, their grief over her demise shouldn’t be accessible at the click of a remote.”

In the month’s following her mother’s death, Bobbi Kristina Brown has been the focus of the media’s attention when it comes to the Houston’s, and the show reflects this development. The 19-year-old is seen drinking an alcoholic cocktail on camera during the show’s first episode, much to the chagrin of Pat Houston, Whitney’s long-time manager, and Bobbi Kristina’s surrogate mother on the show.

Though Pat is supposedly the show’s central character, the episode revolves around Bobbi Kristina and her relationship with best friend turned boyfriend, Nick Gordon. Gordon was raised alongside Bobbi Kristina, after being informally adopted by Whitney. Though the family expresses discomfort and outright disagreement with the couple’s plans to marry, they maintain that their relationship is misunderstood.

“We were best friends long, long ago, and now I’m in love with him,” Bobbi Kristina asserts. “It was never anything that these people are saying that it was incest. None of that. You guys can take my word for it.”

The first episode takes place three months after Whitney’s death, and documents the family’s visit to Whitney’s grave for Mother’s Day. It is here, just minutes after the episode opens that The Daily Beast writer Allison Samuels felt that the show had gone too far.

“The disturbingly intrusive scene also includes Whitney’s mother, Cissy, and brother, Gary, and yet still manages to feel forced and contrived,” Samuels writes. “The viewer is pained not only by the family’s loss but also by their apparent need to display that loss in such a visible way.”

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11 thoughts on “Houstons’ Reality Show: Disturbingly Intrusive

  1. Irise Bella says:

    waaaooo! very disturbing, they all look can a weird 2 me I can't believed what I was seen… maybe I'm not normal.

  2. Irise Bella says:

    waaaooo! very disturbing, they all look can a weird 2 me I can't believed what I was seen… maybe I'm not normal.

  3. Raven Lee Meadows says:

    go back and watch BOBBY BROWN footage, I use to say to my hubby back then, 'that little girl is drinking.. I wish someone would do something about it'. it was so obvious to our household. she was a little girl lost, and no one was watching out for her. then comes along this boy shes in love with, I say…. love is in the air. these two found ea other while they were young, and they stick together like glue. we should all remember what its like to be that much in love. I wish her the best…

  4. Raven Lee Meadows says:

    hum… go back and watch BOBBY BROWN footage, my hubby use to say, 'that little girl is drinking! notice how she keeps going off and hiding.. I wish someone would notice and do something about this''. it was so obvious to our household, we tried to post it back then. Now, fast forward to now, suddenly the whole world wants to help this little girl lost, and suddenly NOW family is watching out for her. But, the job was taken 7yrs ago when God brought this boy along , and shes in love, It shows. The second he comes into a room, they are at ea others side like glue. Reminds me of her mama and daddy, the second they were together, they too, would go off behind a closed door and do what they do. Its learned behaviour. See it on old Bobby Brown episodes. Chrissi would be left to sit around, by herself, while mom and dad..did.. what they did. Anyway,… I think its sweet that love is in the air for these two who found ea other while they were young, got to know ea other as children.. Now they are young adults. It works for them. We should all remember what its like to be that much in love. I wish her the best… she appears to be a sweet heart. She sure likes being with this young man. Isn't that what we all want for our children? A mutual understanding, and a love from the get go? You betcha!

  5. Raven Lee Meadows says:

    Dear God, I'm watching it tonite, way more closely than first time. And, its so evident that Krissi is using. What, I can only guess. The last thing she desires is to be without… (her connection? dare I say it. Look into this kids background, is he the one who was bringing Whitney what she needed? I'm not saying, get him in trouble. Another thing that is evident is there are several members of this family that are under influence. Aunt Pat, what you need to do is take her to a rehab. I don't know which one. But one that is going to deal with years of her life. This is not going to go away, if that boy leaves. Not going to happen. Pushing Kristina into the lime light is not what she needs at this time either. She is craving 'alone time'… not auditions. She is not her mother. I'm sorry, but she's not. If krissi has it in her to be an all out actress, it would already be evident. Its not. I'm sorry. But someone needs to tell you like it is. Are u under the impression that she is going to pick up where Whitney left off? That's too much pressure. Those shoes are too big to fill. It would be the same thing to expect Michael Jacksons kids to pick up where he left off. The gifts were given, the World accepted the gifts of Whitney and MJ, but it stops there. I'm sorry to be so blunt. But you are looking down the wrong road to help this child. Good luck.

  6. Raven Lee Meadows says:

    Oh my… what I just saw. Ok… I hope and pray this show is an intervention, I really hope so. When I saw Aunt Pat talking to the acting coach, I was like "what kinds of questions are these to tell an acting coach?'. Please let this be the grand intervention. That boy sat there in the back seat of the two men, and said "All have been doing was helping BOTH of them (he was referring to Whitney and Krissi) for the last 7yrs. And he claimed that their relationship isn't even physical"… So, what's left. He was their errand boy?

  7. Linda Taylor says:

    it's too bad her family allowed her to air her most intimate feelings surrounding her mother'd death. And as for me it was very differicult to watch, being I just lost my son. However, I one little piece of advice if anyone can get this comment to bobby christine. SHE NEEDS TO BE WITH HER FATHER RIGHT NOW…why? because he is the only one who loved whitney like she needed to be loved.

    And bobby christine needs to be comforted by her father's love for her mother right now…and then she and as soon as whitney's family recognize bobby brown as the love of whitney's life then that child will begin to heal righteously.

  8. Young Bobbi Kristina appears to be "under the influence" whenever she appears on the show.It is painful to watch her while she is so vulnerable with that so-called boyfriend/brother. He strikes me as a gold-digging insincere flake. Does he have a job, or is he too living off of W's. last dime? Latest episode shows the family hooking her up with a singing coach. Sorry, leeches, Bobby Kristina cannot sing. Period. She did NOT inherit her mother's voice. Stop the madness. Bobby K. cannot sing. Someone is delusional.

  9. Agree, I never see these folks hugging, comforting, or giving Bobby K. any form of affection in this time of grief. Someone should get in touch with her father so that they can be together. She needs hugs and kisses from her dad. Patricia is probably behind the scenes furthering the "estrangement" because if Bobbi went to stay with her dad (where she belongs), Patricia's crew would have no show..

  10. Nikki Rice says:

    The whole thing is stupid & Bobbi Christina is so immature. Give me a break & get real jobs. Especially her friend/brother/lover & now add player to his many titles. Get a life & an education instead of being a reality tv star. You must like hanging out with the Palin's & Kardasnian's.

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