As Claudia Oshry (better known as @girlwithnojob) said recently on her podcast, “Even a boring episode of The Kardashians is an insight into the incredibly interesting life of a rich and famous person.”
And you know what? I would have to agree. Season 17 of “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” premiered this past Sunday, and it was—dare I say it—boring. These past few months without the new season have been hard for Kardashian super-fans like myself, and I’ve spent a lot of long hours, curled up in my bed, watching old repeat episodes and waiting for my Kylie Skin face mask to dry. So, when Sunday rolled around, I was feeling excited, hopeful even. I was counting down the minutes until I could see Kanye’s smiling face on my TV screen again, and couldn’t wait to find out the details of Kim’s new shapewear line. However, that was all for nothing, as this season is already proving to be underwhelming, and Kanye has yet to appear in a single interview.
This was my gripe with “Keeping Up” last season: it’s been lagging a little. Most of the news about their lives and relationships are released on TMZ well before the season premiere, so it’s not really like we’re learning anything new. While it’s interesting to see these incidents played out on the show, nothing is really that shocking anymore. I mean, I already knew that Kylie threw a huge birthday party for Stormi and that Kourtney makes avocado pudding every morning for breakfast.
Yet, while this first episode of the new season was nothing shocking, Oshry was right when she said that no matter how boring, each episode is an insight into the life of the rich and famous person.
The episode starts out with Khloe complaining about Tristan, and rightfully so. For those who don’t know, Khloe’s ex-boyfriend, and father to her daughter, was caught cheating on her with Kylie’s now ex-best-friend, Jordyn Woods, at a party in Hollywood. He’s a repeat offender, as he also cheated on her during her third trimester of pregnancy (I like to call him Tristan “Third-Trimester” Thompson), and last season, Khloe finally decided to dump him. Of course, though, he’s still a major plotline in Season 17, and Khloe is lamenting to Kim and Kris about how Tristan still won’t leave her alone. The camera pans around the house as we see the countless flower bouquets and gifts he keeps sending her. Kris asks Khloe if she would ever get back with him, and Khloe firmly says no. Honestly, I’m so proud of her and I think that she has a lot of potential for personal growth during this season. Bye, Tristan!
Another interesting factoid we learn in this yawn-inducing episode is that Kim is dealing with some health problems, specifically pain in her hands and wrists. She goes to the doctor and he diagnoses her with rheumatoid arthritis. Tragique! Kim cries a lot in this episode, and I really do feel bad for her. It seems as if she’s in a lot of pain, and it must be hard to have to deal with both psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis, particularly at such a young age.
Perhaps the best part of this episode, though, was the appearance of Jonathan Cheban, aka @foodgod, aka Kim Kardashian’s best friend and my absolute favorite figure on the show. Jonathan Cheban is truly a weirdo legend and has had more plastic surgery procedures than I can count on my fingers and toes. But I can’t help but only appreciate him because he has been such an amazing friend to Kim throughout the past few years, and because he is obsessed with food and posts the craziest pictures on Instagram.
It was truly a treat when to get to see Kim and Jonathan out for lunch at a restaurant called BurgerIM, where they eat huge onion rings and burgers. I mean, Jonathan even lifted the onion ring for Kim because it was too much weight on her wrists due to her arthritis. Does a better best friend exist? I think not.
The episode wraps up at Khloe’s daughter’s first birthday party. Khloe had been grappling over whether or not she should invite Tristan, but ultimately, she does. It proves to be extremely awkward, but the rest of the party seemed amazing. There were ponies, butterflies, and an unlimited supply of candy and cake. Khloe is really dedicated to making sure that True has a really happy childhood, and it shows. I just can’t wait for True to grow up, because I know she’s going to bring a lot to the show. Of course, Kanye ended up getting into a small fight with Tristan at the end of the party, but hey, what can we expect? In my book, anyone can yell at Tristan “Third-Trimester” Thompson.
Overall, it wasn’t a very exciting start to the season. I think the number one takeaway from this first episode is that Kourtney needs a new storyline. Everything that comes out of her mouth is a complaint, or her saying that she’s stressed out. This time, she was sobbing about whether or not she should have a birthday party. In this new season’s trailers, she’s seen crying and yelling that she’s going to move away from her sisters. It’s like, we get it Kourtney—you’re miserable, and you hate being on the show. It’s all we’ve been hearing about for the past two seasons, and it seems as if her complaining about being in the spotlight is just going to continue into Season 17. She either needs to quit the show, or we need to stop hearing about it.
What I have realized, though, is that as the years have gone on, the Kardashians seem to have made their show a lot more “real” and down-to-earth (relatively speaking). They’ve opened up a lot more about their personal lives, and their struggles with mental health or even rheumatoid arthritis. They’ve almost stopped trying to have this “perfect” persona, and have begun talking about real problems that many Americans can relate to. Instead of hearing Kim cry about her diamond earrings that she lost in Bora Bora, we’re talking about her psoriasis, which seems a lot more familiar to the average person. However, they do still have their moments, and no one really cares to see Kourtney’s 9-year-old son, Mason, ordering the entire menu at a fancy steakhouse.
Overall, the first episode of Season 17 was just ho-hum. It wasn’t the best, but it also wasn’t the worst (insightful, I know, but it’s true). I’ll admit, I did really miss watching them, and I will continue to tune in solely because I’m obsessed with Kim and Kanye. This season has the potential to be interesting, especially since we’ll get to see a health scare involving Kris and some more drama involving Jordyn Woods, so not all hope is lost. But, I’m going to be honest—their producers really need to pick it up, because I don’t know how many more times I can watch the sisters eating their infamous salads and saying “Hi, Doll” about a thousand times.
Jane Herz can be reached at email@example.com.