This week’s episode of Branson Famous, “Small Town Fame” starts on a predictable note, with Megan unable to hide her jealousy of Heather. She remarks to Heather that she and Patty are getting along well, and Heather’s comments, “I really, really, like, care for her deeply,” and “we’re just kindred spirits.” Those remarks alarm me .. a bit. Who talks about her boss that way? (Secretaries on Mad Men. That’s it, though. Really.) At any rate, Patty and Heather DO seem to be getting along well (though I don’t feel like their relationship is genuine), and this sets Megan’s jealous tone for the remainder of the episode. Megan says that she’s been begging for the Mabes to treat her, for 4 years, the way that they already treat Heather.
Breezy brings in the newspaper article that the reporter from The Independent wrote about the show, and Patty is thrilled with the article. Brandon and Megan are predictably upset that the only person mentioned in the article is Heather, and they suspect that the reviewer was planted. Later in the show, Megan confronts Heather about her article in the Independent and implies that perhaps Heather is doing “favors” to get a good write-up. I’m not sure if she’s implying that Heather is doing sexual favors, but I think Heather might have the impression that that’s what Megan means.
Breezy’s jealousy of Heather, too, is even more apparent in this episode than it has been in the past. She points out that Tim and Patty have never helped anyone, including her, the way they help Heather. (This is where we do the first singing confessional, from Breezy, which is fine. It’s just … fine. Nothing to report.) I’ve been wondering, since early on in the series, why Breezy and Megan haven’t formed some sort of alliance against Heather. Breezy does, in fact, end up asking Megan for help with singing lessons, and Megan agrees, pointing out that she does not think Heather belongs up on that stage. But they don’t do the kind of teaming-up that I would have expected. I think Breezy, at this point in the game, is still way too nice. She needs to up her cattiness if she’s going to beat Heather. If there’s something that two catty females are good at (trust me, I know), it’s teaming up against a third girl. (I spent a good portion of my life being that third girl. So if you like to imagine what the writer looks like when you read this blog, just imagine the third girl: Heather Gentry. Yeah. That’s EXACTLY what I look like.) Later in the show, we see Breezy and her husband Derrick, and she’s complaining that nobody helps her, and he points out how shy she is and how she needs to just try a little bit harder. She doesn’t mention to him that she’s asked Megan to help her with her singing, I noticed.
Partway into the show, we see Tim and Patty cleaning up the theater (they act as their own cleaning crew because of the money situation), complaining that Megan doesn’t help with the hard labor. Megan points out to the camera that they don’t make Heather clean (she says this like a spoiled child). This is true, but Megan, THEY JUST HIRED HEATHER. What a great way to scare someone off: “You can sing and dance, and by the way, you’ll be scraping gum off the bottom of the seats.” Of COURSE they’re going to expect Megan to help; she’s supposedly maybe someday sort of going to be part of the family. Maybe. Someday. “You know, IF they ever get married,” Patty says, “she’s gonna be doing this.” I’m left wondering why they complain that Megan won’t clean anything, but nobody’s complaining about Brandon, or Denton, or Breezy.
Speaking of the money problems that lead to the cleaning problems, we also are reintroduced to Inderjit, the financial investor, in this episode. He asks Brandon about the marketing plan, and Brandon gets defensive. He doesn’t want someone to take over as a producer, and Inderjit points out the golden rule: “The man with the gold makes the rule.” Part of Brandon’s marketing, apparently, is appearing on local news, and he and Megan travel to a local affiliate to promote the show. After a brief argument over billboards (actually, lack thereof) for the Baldknobbers Jamboree, they go on the news, which seems to go fine, but this irritates Tim and Patty. They don’t love that Brandon and Megan have put themselves in charge of publicity, and tell them that they need to start asking before they do stuff like TV news. (Does it seem odd to anyone else that when they ask Brandon what he did today he doesn’t think it’s worth mentioning that he and Megan were on the news? It seems like kind of a standout event in the day. It’s not like, breakfast, or putting gas in the car. It’s BEING ON THE NEWS.) Megan gets defensive about their appearance, and says that maybe people are more interested in her and Brandon (rather than the other Baldknobbers) since they are a “young, hot power couple.” (Really? POWER COUPLE? Beyoncé and Jay-Z, Brad and Angelina … Megan and Brandon? Nope. Nope nope nope.) At this point, Patty goes off on Megan. “Maybe the problem you’re not getting a ring is you, dear.” She storms out of the room, with her blue dress and her big blonde hair, and I’m happy she’s gotten the last word, here.
We end the show with Megan crying her eyes out to Brandon, and also to the camera in confessional, about the way Patty treats her. “I feel like a dog that’s been begging at the bottom of the table for 4 frickin’ years,” she says, and FINALLY admits that Heather is not her problem. It’s Tim and Patty. (Um, dear, I think you’re causing some of your own problems, but hey, that’s just me.) During her teary-eyed car chat with Brandon, Megan tells him that she’s tried everything with Tim and Patty, and Brandon says, “So you’re going to threaten our relationship.” “I’m not threatening our relationship. Your mom is,” says Megan. What is she talking about? Are they going to break up over Tim and Patty? I have heard no actual threats here. Where are the threats? I WOULD LIKE TO HEAR THREATS. Anyway, here comes super-awkward singing confessional number two of the episode! Megan sings about how she wants to be Brandon’s wife, but there’s so much in the way. “Don’t you want me to be the woman in your life?” she sings. How is she going to handle having Patty as her mother-in-law for the rest of her life, she wonders aloud. And it’s so cheesy I just cannot handle it – but I also can’t turn it off.