Recap – The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition Episode 1

MotherDaughter Experiment Andrea Verschage
They all look so happy and wholesome!

The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition Episode 1 (Lifetime, original airdate 3/1/16)

The first episode of The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition is titled “The Mother of All Drama.” Aptly. It could also be titled, “Heidi’s Drunk and Puking in the Hall,” or “Heidi Starts Some Sh*t Right Off the Bat.” Sweet mother of mercy, let’s see what happened on the first episode …

In the first part of the show, everyone except Courtney’s mom Krista shows up, either in pairs or alone, and we’re introduced to them and what they’re all about. (In yesterday’s preview of the show, I did a quick who’s who, in case you need a refresher.)

Kim Richards and her daughter Kimberly show up, and they’re nervous about who’s going to be in the house. “I mean, I wouldn’t want to hang out with a bunch of people that are, like, obnoxious troublemakers,” says Kim. Uh, okay. That’s kind of the point … it’s not going to be you and a bunch of nuns. (Although, how cool would THAT be?) It will be you and two Nunns though. (Eh? See what I did there?) Natalie Nunn and her mom Karen show up, and Natalie knows Heidi Pratt Montag is on the way. “When Heidi walks in, it’s going to be literally World War III,” Natalie says. Natalie doesn’t know what “literally” means, because when Heidi walks in, I mean … sh*t goes down, but the world doesn’t literally erupt into a nuclear battle or anything.

MotherDaughter Experiment Episode 1
It’s not literal WWIII but I guess it’s close.

Heidi sees Natalie, and there’s instant drama. The word “f*ck” is thrown around like confetti at a sweet 16 party. (Kim Richards is in her room, acting shocked, and is all “Where are we?” Oh, Kim, don’t pretend this isn’t fun to listen to.) Heidi’s mom, Darlene, shows up, and tries to pull Heidi away from Natalie, reminding her this is about their mother-daughter relationship. It’s clear to Darlene that Heidi is drunk, and kind of out of control. Heidi is crying — blubbering, really — and says she’s only had one shot. (Did she take the shot out of a pint glass?) Heidi stumbles out of the room as Shar Jackson (who has arrived with her daughter Cassie) is introducing herself to Natalie, and OMG is she a hot mess. Natalie and Heidi argue, then somehow end up making up and hugging.

The Cansecos show up without incident, and then Courtney Stodden gets to the house. Okay, I’ve been living under a rock for some time now, so this was my first introduction to her. I guess I feel bad for her, since her relationship with her mom is so warped, but when she’s talking to Heidi she sounds so vacuous. “I feel, like, so broken, like I’m like, I’m constantly crying.” It’s kind of disingenuous, IMO.

Heidi declares that it’s cocktail hour, because of course it is, and Dr. Debbie shows up to tell them their real work starts tomorrow. There’s no room for the nonsense that took place earlier. Heidi gets all defensive and confronts her (for being disrespectful — as though Heidi is the one in the right, here) in front of the group. When everyone goes in for dinner, she tells the doctor she’s talking shit and that she doesn’t appreciate her condescending attitude. And then she gets all weepy. (She seems to get angry, then weepy, a lot.) And then things are good, and it’s time for dinner.

While the group talks about their issues, Heidi gets this look on her face. I know this look.

MotherDaugher Experiment Episode 1
We all know that look. Protect your shoes, ladies. 😳

When someone looks at you that way, back away, because they’re about to puke on your shoes/shirt/hair/all of the above. She tries to puke into her napkin, then gets up and pukes all the way down the hall until she gets to the bathroom. Jessica Canseco is grossed out by the vomit because she says has OCD. (I don’t think you understand true OCD, Jessica, but whatever – at least you didn’t say “literal OCD.” We’re all grossed-out by puke. Darlene is understandably upset; she’s concerned that Heidi’s drinking has escalated to cope with stress.

The next day, everyone’s getting ready for group therapy. Courtney says she’s been throwing up all morning (lots of vomit references in this show!) because she’s so nervous about her mom coming. (She hasn’t seen or talked to her in quite some time.) Everyone meets in the therapy room after lunch, and Dr. Debbie wants to dive right in. She tells everyone that she’s going to play the tapes with their interviews for the shows (where they talk about their problems, “candidly”). And some of the women look surprised about this. This is a typical reality TV show thing, ladies, and most of you have BEEN on reality TV! Of COURSE they’re going to show your tape.

The videos are pretty predictable. There are issues. They’re going to work through them. There is anger. They’re going to work through that. Kimberly feels like she has to protect her mom; she has the husband role. Heidi really needed her mom, but her mom hurt her when she rejected her after her plastic surgery. Shar doesn’t take into account that when she lost people in her life, Cassie lost those same people and also was hurt. Jessica has always put men first and doesn’t have a real mother-daughter relationship with Josie; Josie is angry because mom was never there for her. The Nunns … that’s complicated. Karen’s mom just died (like, JUST died, the week before the first episode was taped) and she’s been her caretaker for years. She had to be, but in doing that, Natalie was put second.

And then there’s Courtney. Her mom has arrived and is in the house … Dr. Debbie goes to get her. When she’s gone, Darlene nicely points out to Courtney that situations like this often get worse before they get better. True that. When Courtney’s mom, Krista, comes in, everyone is silent.

Courtney says her mom wants fame and will stop at nothing to get it. (I’m inclined to believe this. Who lets their teenage daughter marry a man more than 3 times her age?!) Courtney claims Krista declared her love for Courtney’s husband, Doug. Krista, on the other hand, says that at point in time, Courtney didn’t even want him anymore (but still claims that she, Krista, was never in love with him). She says that Courtney was brainwashed by him. Shrug … something happened to that girl’s brain …

MotherDaughter Experiment Episode 1
When Krista claims Courtney was brainwashed, it’s just awkward for everyone.

Dr. Debbie closes the session, and Courtney and Krista stay in the room. Krista says Courtney has to get her facts straight — she’s not trying to steal her husband; Courtney cries a lot. They decide to stay in therapy, but Courtney thinks their relationship is doomed. Are they? Maybe we’ll see, next week.

The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition airs Tuesday nights at 10pm ET/9pm CT on Lifetime.


Images © 2016 Lifetime/A&E Television Networks.

About Andrea Verschage 65 Articles
Maker of bad puns and good cookies. Enjoys proper punctuation; is a huge fan of the semicolon. Firmly believes every life situation can be tied back to an episode of Seinfeld. SERENITY NOW!