In the words of Caitlyn Jenner, “I had it all, and then I met Kris.”
And, to be quite honest, that’s exactly how I’ve been feeling about Season 17 of “Keeping Up With The Kardashians.” Not that Kris Jenner is ruining my life or anything, but she may be coming close.
In my humble opinion, I think that this season has progressed to be one of the best ones yet. And now, slowly but surely, it have been taking over my life this semester—and in more ways than one. Not only can I no longer do any homework on Sunday evenings, as it’s now reserved for tuning in to E! at 9 p.m. for the weekly episode premiere, but I’ve also succumbed to wearing Kim’s new underwear and shapewear line, Skims. To watch last weekend’s episode, my friend and I sat on the couch in our Yeezy sweatpants, and, in fact, last night, I placed an order to buy the new KKW fragrance candle in Crystal Gardenia. (Buy it now, thank me later). I’m becoming a little bit too influenced by the Kardashians, and it’s seemingly becoming more and more likely that upon graduation, I’ll be buying a one-way ticket to L.A. and never come back.
In my last Kardashian Season 17 update, I took issue with how boring the last few seasons have been and was worried that this season would be just the same. But, the good news is that in the past few weeks, I have been proved very, very wrong. It seems as if in this season we’re learning more than ever about everyone’s relationships—romantic, familial, and platonic.
Last week’s episode, which aired Oct. 6, featured one of the most iconic moments that we’ve ever been blessed with on television—a JoJo Siwa and North West collaboration. In case you don’t know who JoJo Siwa is, she is a ex-cast member of the show “Dance Moms” and has now created a tweenage empire out of glitter, sparkles, and huge hair bows. She also has a popular YouTube channel and featured Kim’s daughter, North, on it last March. The viral video has over 25 million views, and last week, we finally got an inside look at what happened behind the scenes of that genius video, where JoJo “babysits” North for a day. Sometimes I can’t tell if JoJo is actually a 15-year-old girl or a 40-year-old woman, but that’s a story for another day.
When the video first premiered, North got a lot of criticism for being too shy and only giving JoJo “yes” or “no” answers. I always had a theory (and so did my favorite podcast, The Morning Toast), that Kim was in fact there the whole time, instructing North on what to say and do behind the scenes. Ultimately, we see that that turned out to be true, but even so, Kim came across as a really caring mother. She just wanted North to feel comfortable on set and even had her FaceTime her best friend mid-way through the shoot to boost her confidence a little bit. In this episode, we also saw Kim and Kanye debating about whether or not they were even going to let North be in the video, but they eventually decided to let her since they knew it was going to make her happy.
Sure, Kim may be a little bit of a stage mom, but knowing that it was completely North’s choice was really heartwarming and almost reassuring. The Kardashian kids are almost always in the spotlight, and sometimes it makes me wonder if it’s actually their choice, or because their parents are forcing them. In reality, it’s probably a little bit of both, but in this case, North was actually able to consent, which is really important. Plus, I couldn’t ask for anything more than seeing North and JoJo make glitter slime together while Kim snooped through JoJo’s closet.
Perhaps even more interesting than that collaboration, though, was the insight we got into Khloe and her best friend Malika’s relationship. Throughout the seasons, it always seemed like they had a perfect relationship, almost a business-like one, at that. Malika always helped Khloe with her new business ventures and accompanied her on most press trips. However, the two got into a huge fight while in Vegas for Malika’s birthday, and Khloe said that she was acting like “a brat.” Khloe is now sober, and Malika was trying to pressure her to drink, which was not cool. In fact, it was an extremely bad look for Malika and made her come across as an extremely unsupportive friend. They made up in the end, but I’m still left with a bad taste in my mouth. (However, I still must extend congratulations to Malika, since she announced on Instagram last week that’s pregnant. Mazel Tov!)
I was also pleasantly surprised that the cameras were able to make their way all the way to Switzerland to follow a Disick vacation with the addition of Scott’s girlfriend, Sofia Richie. Of course, I stalked every photo of theirs on Instagram as the trip was happening in real time, but a simple picture of Kourtney in a hot tub will never tell the full story. I was really happy to see how much Scott has grown up throughout the years, and this trip really showed his maturity and ability to get along with his ex and current girlfriend. It was a weird dynamic in the beginning, but I appreciated how much Scott wanted to make both parties feel extremely comfortable on this trip. You could tell that he still cares a lot about Kourtney, and that he truly loves his kids so much. Plus, I loved seeing Reign in a snowsuit—hot take, but he’s definitely the cutest Kardashian kid by far.
One aspect I think we’re missing, though, is Kendall’s input. It seems as if she’s never on the show anymore. Kris, if you’re reading this, you need to give the fans more!
Overall, I couldn’t be more excited to see where the rest of this season will go. Things have turned around drastically since last season, and it’s almost like the producers were listening to my plea to let the audience in more to the behind-the-scenes of their lives. They’ve really cut back on the prank scenes, and the obviously scripted scenes. I’m also enjoying the screen time that some “secondary” characters are getting—such as Jonathan Cheban, Malika, and Tristan “Third Trimester” Thompson. I think that what we’ve seen so far is really promising, and as Kim said many seasons ago, if I think about long enough, I could cry…. but I won’t.
Jane Herz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.