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Bethenny Frankel is on a Fast Track to Becoming Jill Zarin

by Ilana Angel

July 2, 2010 | 8:43 am

I can’t quite seem to pick a side on this chick, or her show. One minute I love her, and then I think she is annoying.  In one scene I truly think we could be friends, then in the next her voice is so shrill and aggravating, that I think I could not be around her for long.

Bethenny’s fans are hardcore, and this blog will ruffle some feathers. Her peeps will say she is perfect, and I’m a bitch, but whatever.  The funny and charming Bethenny may simply not be consistent enough for me to care about her or her show, past this season.

This week starts off with Bethenny doing a bottle signing in New Jersey for her Skinny Girl Margarita.  Sidebar:  Remember when Jill came to St. John, and Bethenny did an impersonation of her?  Bethenny has the exact same nasally whining voice when she walks into the store.

Bethenny is annoying at the liquor store.  Her beating up on Max is getting old.  He’s a cute kid, he’s clearly not good at his job and trying to be famous, but he’s young and trying, so we’ll cut him some slack.  That said, he’s not even remotely interesting and we need to move on.

It’s time for Bethenny’s bridal shower.  She is getting her hair done, and her stylist is there.  Remember when Bethenny was normal?  Before she accused Jill of becoming too wrapped up in the hype of the show, and before she needed to pay someone to pick out her clothes?

Perhaps Bethenny was so quick to separate from Jill,  because she saw all the things she was about to become, and couldn’t handle it.  I like Bethenny, but she is just too much.  She accuses Jill of not seeing herself like others do, and I think she suffers from the same ailment.

Bethenny can’t find a dress that fits, and she is screaming at her friend.  She is being mean, and once again whining about how busy she is.  Nobody put a gun to her head and told her to do everything so quickly.  I think she did it so she would have things to complain about.

So she finally finds something to wear.  Let me just say it was a most unfortunate dress, and one that a pregnant woman should never wear.  It was not a dress, but more like a shirt, and she looked ridiculous.  It was far to short, and simply not attractive or appropriate.

Bethenny is trying too hard.  She flings the one-liners, which by the way are hilarious.  Her tampon line about the length of her dress was really funny.  We know she can be funny, but she is becoming a caricature.  She is not creating a brand, so much as creating a character. 

The show feels orchestrated.  It’s like she is staring in a sit-com, not a reality show.  This is the most scripted non-scripted show on television.  I wonder what it’s like for Jill to see Bethenny’s show, not be a part of it, and watch Bethenny be all the things that she told Jill were bad.

Wedding planner Shawn is off to get the cake.  Bethenny is complaining about how much she has to do, yet she is unable to release any control.  She is exhausted not because she is seven and a half months pregnant, but because she does not turn her brain, or control panel off.  Ever.

Bethenny and Jason are home.  She is planning the wedding, he is preoccupied with basketball on TV.  It’s these honest moments, where she loses her mind, where we see that maybe, at the core of who she is, Bethenny is a celebrity whore and this is her doing, not Jason’s.

She says she wanted a small wedding, and the over the top stuff is because Jason and his family wanted it.  Really?  His small town parents wanted the Four Seasons?  She is screaming at Jason, saying she is known for having things perfect.  Bethenny, like Jill, has bought into her own hype.

Jason hits it out of the park when he says she is approaching the wedding like a business.  Jason is frustrated.  She won’t allow his parents to bring their own camera to the wedding.  Really?  Is she worried they will sell a pic to the tabloids?  This week, Bethenny is back to being a bitch.

Bethenny is with Shawn, and complaining about Jason.  On camera.  She is confiding and spewing, trying to explain herself, but I’m not really buying it.  Why is she having this conversation with the wedding planner, and not with her therapist? 

They get their wedding license, and meet with the wedding officiant.  Jason says he wants to include the memory of his brother Bryan, who passed away.  It’s lovely.  The officiant asks questions about their families, and Bethenny says she has no family coming, and gets upset.

Jason takes control of the meeting, they ask the woman to leave, and Bethenny has a little meltdown.  It is as these moments, that you cannot help but love this girl, love Jason, and love them together.  If Bethenny could just stop being “Bethenny” all the time, it would be great.

Her childhood was bad, her life it complicated, she is pregnant and hormonal.  We feel for her, and are happy she found this wonderful man, and is having a baby.  She has got to get a grip on her celebrity though.  She is heading to Jill Zarinland and needs to be careful.

Bethenny is at the therapist, and it’s all about her rough childhood.  Again.  It’s the rehearsal dinner.  Jason is cute, his family is cute, and I’m happy for all of them.  She gives him a painting that he loves as a wedding gift.  It’s touching to see how touched he is by the gift.

Next week will be the wedding, and I think it will be fabulous.  Here’s the bottom line, while it may not be clear, I really do like this girl.  She is smart, funny, beautiful and driven.  I admire her for what she has accomplished both personally, and professionally.

I go back and forth on this show.  I watch it, like it, but am constantly surprised by her hypocrisy.  She has become all the things that she accused Jill of at the reunion.  She is not doing anything for this wedding without a camera on her, which she says is why she lost respect for Jill.

At the end of the day, she deserves to be happy.  I hope she finds peace, comes to terms with her celebrity, gives her child the life she never had herself, builds a wonderful life with Jason, and somewhere along the way, is able to be friends with Jill again. 

Bethenny got married, had a baby, launched her brand, and got all the things she dreamed of, but was not sure she could have.  She is an inspiration to women.  The big question is, is she able to be Bethenny, without being obsessed about being “Bethenny”?  I’m keeping the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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