The Simpson family never seems to have it easy, do they? After 12 years of patterned success and failures, this dysfunctional family still can’t hide from the paparazzi blitz and barrage.
But somehow, they are always second best.
Even in 1999, Jessica stood one step behind competitors Britney and Christina. Her single wasn’t released fast enough, her beats weren’t up enough, her image wasn’t sexy enough. Let us not forget that Jess never made it as a Mickey Mouse Club member back when the three were just school girls. Like the others, however, her sound would start as powerful and end up, well, painfully breathy.
And while Britney never married N*SYNC’s Justin Timberlake, and Christina never hooked up with any of the Backstreet Boys (as far as we know), Jessica did have one thing going: her relationship with Nick Lachey, of lesser-known boy band 98 Degrees. Take what you got and run with it, yeah?
A reality series was pitched, which premiered in 2003. The first of its kind, really. “Nick and Jessica” made themselves into household names by letting millions take a look into their semi-private life as a celebrity couple. The fact that Jessica claimed to be saving her virginity for marriage didn’t hurt ratings, either. “Newlyweds” produced the famous “Chicken by the Sea” commentary, in addition to “Dad-ager” Joe Simpson quotable praise for his daughter’s boobs. Remember this?
“Jessica never tries to be sexy. She just is sexy. If you put her in a T-shirt or you put her in a bustier, she’s sexy in both. She’s got double D’s! You can’t cover those suckers up!”
Sorry to remind you. We tried to forget, too.
Nick and Jess filed for divorce in 2005, citing “irreconcilable differences,” yadda yadda yadda. At the very same time, little sister Ashlee launched her own reality series, which chronicled the recording of her first album, “Autobiography.” The following years had its ups and downs for Ash: Entertainment Weekly named her one of its Breakout Stars of 2004, and then the “SNL” catastrophe happened. She went through the arduous Hollywood task of rhinoplasty, and then she got knocked up by and married to Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz. Short-lived stints on a reprise of “Melrose Place” and Broadway’s “Chicago” followed. Oh yeah, then Ash and Pete filed for divorce citing “irreconcilable differences” at the start of 2011. Look how this paragraph came full circle!
The only thing Jessica was getting press for was her undeniable weight gain and poor fashion choices. Her albums (Christmas-themed and country) were minor messes. Jessica became a “jinx” (George W. Bush’s words, not mine) for boyfriend/Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo and the two split a year a half later.
What we’re really trying to get to is this: Jessica Simpson is pregnant, and it doesn’t seem like anybody cares.
In 2010, Jess began dating Eric Johnson. This name means nothing to most of you — he played for the San Francisco 49ers for awhile, and he was married once before. That’s pretty much all we know about the man. Six months after the courtship began, the two announced their engagement. Yes, they’re having a baby. Yes, they have names picked out. Same old story, some old characters (what is it with faded Hollywood females and their athletes?!)
Could “Newlyweds: Jessica and Eric” be the Oxygen Network’s latest pick up?
I love my trash TV, but count me out on this one. The Simpsons need to get out the spotlight stat, and find their way behind the curtain.
Allison Berger is a Philadelphia-based writer and a pop music columnist for Reverb. Check out more of her writing here.