Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Something Positive: A Chance to Talk about Why You Initially Started to Watch the Show and Favorite Moments

Submitted for publication by Anya.

It seems like lately watchers of “Jon & Kate Plus Eight” are assumed to be in two very different opposite camps: “the fans” and “the haters”. I think this is a bit of an oversimplification, but it does appear many viewers have very different reactions to the show and to the Gosselins themselves. Some of this has been driven by rumors floating around the internet. Some of it is based on observations in comparing recent episodes with those from earlier in the show.

I have spoken before about how some of the toxicity floating around on various blogs has been difficult for me to stomach and has actually at times taken away from my enjoyment of the show. Some will say that I don’t want to know the truth. Well, “truth” is often subjective folks.

So I’d like to take a break and focus on something more positive and ask viewers to share some of what they like about the show. What drew you to the show in the first place? Do you have a favorite episode? A favorite Gosselin kid? Any strategies that J&K employ in raising their family that you particularly admire?

I’ll start. I can’t remember the first episode I saw. I think I probably watched portions of a couple of episodes when flipping the dial. Once I started to be able to tell the kids apart, I got more into it. Around the same time, I got my 16-year-old daughter into the show and my sister, so it was fun to not only watch the show, but to discuss it as well.

Favorite episode? It’s hard to pick! If I had to pick one, I would say Alexis and J&K visiting the reptile museum. I love Alexis and her spunk. She’s adorable and this episode we got to see her talk a lot more – a real treat. That said, I was watching the garage makeover episode on DVD the other night (yes, I am a ‘sheeple’ that bought the DVD. At least I can clean out my DVR now). I really liked a lot about this episode. The bickering between J&K (as opposed to some of what we have seen lately that’s not quite as light in tone) was cute. The kids were at their most precious. Kate was Kate – interesting, neurotic, controlling, but interesting to watch! Also, Kevin is hot!

So what about you? Share what you like about the show and the family. There’s no way the show would have become this popular if people weren’t at least initially drawn in by something that they liked….


20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree with the comment about Kevin!
I was drawn to this show by the way the kids interact with each other and seem to really love each other. The best part of this show to me is watching the every day to day life of six kids all the same age.

Anonymous said...

One of my favorite episodes was when Jon took Aaden to the farm. They both seemed to really enjoy it and Aaden was so cute.

Anonymous said...

I started watching during a marathon last winter and found that it was something I could watch and enjoy with my own children. We all love to watch the kids and my 7 and 5 year old play with their "pretend" Gosselin friends. My two year old likes to fall asleep to (insert cute voice) "Plus 8".

finn said...

My favorite quotes

"Why do little girls have little boops?"

"Because big girls have big boops."

"We are all Asian!"

"Him is not real."

"I don't get my cupcake?!"

Guinevere said...

I do a pretty good imitation of Aaden throwing back his head and exclaiming plaintively "I don't get my cupcake?!" So cute and funny.

I admit to rather wicked fondness for the clip where Alexis tells Aaden (I think Aaden?) forcefully, "We don't hit!", right before throwing something at his head. Little Miss Sassy needs to work on understanding the spirit of the law as well as the letter of the law, I think.

This is a great topic. Nice to have some positive conversation! I only started watching a few months ago, but thanks to TLC's frequent reruns, I believe I've caught every episode. I tend to remember and favor moments rather than whole episodes, but if I had to pick a fave I'd have to also go with Alexis at the reptile place, because Alexis is extra super adorable, and has just so many great lines in that episodes: "Aw, him a yittle guy! Him a baby!" and many other classics.

I think unlike some viewers I watch not just for the kids (though I love the kids) but for J&K. They are interesting to me - the whole family and their dynamics are interesting to me. Yeah, it's not pleasant when it gets super-tense or snappish, but most of the episodes I've seen from past seasons have been a decent balance of conflict and fun moments. As much as love the kids, I wonder if 30 minutes of them being cute every week would be a little too treacly.

Anonymous said...

I fell in love with the show the first time I saw it, but for a very different reason. My husband is 1/2 Korean like Jon. We will never have kids of our own, so I just love to watch Jon and Kate's beautiful children getting older. It is an easy show to just veg out to and enjoy.

Anya said...

I love "we are all Asian" too!

Also, who can forget the classic Alexis-Hannah battle to play mother hen to Aaden with Alexis saying "him throw up on your hands." to try and get Hannah to go away.

Joel' "I'm daddy's son" line is sooo sweet.

There's been a number of lines where Miss Mady has shown a little 'tween attitude (referring to Kate as "queen bee"). I like Mady - yes she is high maintenance (so is her mother), but she's extremely smart and articulate.

I could go on...

Guinevere said...

Yeah, it was the way Leah delivered the "we're ALL Asian!" line that killed me. I've been paying more attention to Leah lately; it seems like her personality is coming out more.

Another sequence I love is in the "Discipline" episode, where the parents discuss who gets sent to timeout most. They also have the little kids in the interview chair, and when they are asked who gets sent most, Alexis sort of shyly raises her hand, like she's not sure if it's a good thing or not. But then they are all throwing out suggestions: "Collin! Aaden!", and finally Leah says points to Alexis and shouts triumphantly, "Alexis!". Alexis goes, "Uh, me!" and throws her shoulders back, raises her hand and grins. So freaking cute. Then there is a montage of timeout moments for all the kids; the cutest being Cara, who has the sulkiest expression I've ever seen on her face (and her arms crossed across her chest in the universal "I am sooo mad!" body language), and Leah, who is last, and when she's asked as she's sitting on the basement step, "where are you, Leah?", she looks up at the camera, with an adorable tear-stained face and whispers, "timeout". It's so, so cute.

One thing I've noticed is that (probably because of all the chaos they are used to), the little kids can be remarkably unfazed by each other's freakouts. You can see this in the "him will throw up on your hands" sequence, where Aaden lies their serenely as Lexy and Hannah argue, and even Lexy doesn't seem that exercised by the whole thing, after she has driven Hannah away, crying. I saw it again on Monday with Leah's epic battle with the spider; she is so pleased with herself for killing the spider, even as Cara and Collin are crying and whining about it.

I don't think the kids are exactly insensitive to each other (I've seen them comfort each other a lot, too). I think it's just that on any given day, with that many kids the same age, there are probably a LOT of freakouts, and I'm sure you get jaded after a while.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the episode where they all went to Chicago for the Oprah show. I am a fan of Oprahs so that might have influenced my decision. I think the whole traveling thing with that many kids is interesting.

Anonymous said...

I loooved the one where they were answering emails. When asked about rude messages Kate says they don't even read them and at the first hint of nasty they were deleted....It's not my favorite moment but in light of recent controversy, I was glad to hear that they don't dwell on it.

One fav is "Hannah pooped in her unawares" Just precious!

Anonymous said...

I like to watch Collin pull his brothers and sisters around in the plastic car with the wagon attached. All of us that have kids have shared these moments with our own children but there is something fascinating to see so many kids in one family of the same age interact.

Guinevere said...

Quote: "I loooved the one where they were answering emails. When asked about rude messages Kate says they don't even read them and at the first hint of nasty they were deleted....It's not my favorite moment but in light of recent controversy, I was glad to hear that they don't dwell on it."

Yeah, I hope that's still true. I remember that people at TWoP just couldn't understand why the Gosselins wouldn't want to listen to complete strangers telling them what they are doing wrong as parents and human beings.

Okay, I'm edging into negativity - must be positive! I love how articulate Mady is. I wish I could remember the episode; I think it may have been one of the early specials. Mady is talking on camera, and in the background you can hear wailing. Mady says, very matter-of-fact (I'm paraphrasing), "That's just Alexis. She screams all the time." It was so cute.

Anonymous said...

Funny how Aaden denied his cupcake is a favorite moment for some of you.

Guinevere said...

It was cute. He showed a four-year-old's lack of perspective on the relative importance of the cupcake. Again, he's four. What's your excuse for thinking missing dessert for not eating your dinner (when it's a well-established rule) is the end of the world?

Ephesians 2:10 said...

Great subject. Thanks Anya!

I started watching the Gosselin's with the first special. My daughter saw it and wanted me to watch with her. We were excited when the 2nd special was made and very happy when we found out the series was going to be on.

My favorite moments have already been listed, but one that stands out is "him will frow up in your hands." I loved Alexis and her aldergator. My 2 favorite episodes are the pumpkin carving and pancakes and potties, although I could do without the potty part. My family has a tradition to go to pumpkin farms so that meant a lot to me. The pancakes looked so good my family started pancake Saturday too.

anya said...

To: Ephesians 2:10

Thanks for adding your thoughts.

I still don't understand Kate photographing the first poop?! Maybe it's a family tradition? If I am Alexis or any of the other unfortunates she caught, that photo or image will be torn/erased as soon as I am old to recognize what my good-intenioned, but crazy mother did.

For me, the show could be Alexis (and her aldergator) every Monday night and I'd be happy. You think I am a fan? Hope nobody uncovers any deep dark secrets about Lexie!

Nancy said...

I think my favorite moment is when Jon tells Joel "Yes, you're my son, and I love you."
I also got a kick out of the time Baby Alexis had the diaper blowout and Kate had to bathe her; Kate looked at Alexis in the tub and started to laugh.

Guinevere said...

And Alexis looked up at Kate with the cutest expression on her face! Alexis has always just been such a cutie. It was nice seeing Kate not be quite so uptight about something we all know she doesn't like (messes).

Anonymous said...

hay im carry im 10 how come Maddy is always complaing about something she nothing more than a spoiled BRAT!
she is the only one who is always complaing and wining id say give her a good spanking and she well straighten up! but on this one epsoide she was not.

ajf said...

My favorite quote is when the little kids were learning to help with chores and someone - I think it was Leah - protests, "That raisin was on MY side!" Love it!