Wilson Phillips' Still Holding On Represents the Worst of Music and Television in 2011

Categories: Reunions
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Unless you are a blogger who subjects yourself to terrible television for a living (like me), you probably didn't bother tuning in last Sunday for the premiere of Wilson Phillips: Still Holding On, the show where a once-popular female trio (three of whose members are the offspring of famous musicians) try to restart their music career.

Was ever there a more desperate title for a TV show? Not that we can recall. But, hey, at least it's fitting, because the content of this thing flailed around like a drowning drunk man. You know that Ricky Gervais movie, in which he lives in a world where lying hasn't been invented yet? Well, watching Wilson Phillips: Still Holding On is like getting a glimpse into a world where nobody recognizes irony as a concept. They say things like "It's been a while since we've all performed together, so to get the juices really flowing, we're headlining..."  -- What? What are you headlining? This had better be good! -- "We're headlining the Utah State Fair. This is a real test." Not even kidding.
 
At one point, Chynna Phillips -- an evil witch of a woman, as far as we can tell, but more on that later -- notes, "I think God hands you a certain number of opportunities and then the door closes." Ya think, Chynna? You don't think that maybe releasing a Wilson Phillips Greatest Hits album two years after you'd released a Wilson Phillips Best Of album was a sign that you'd already squeezed as much out of this band as humanly possible? Maybe the door closed after that. Or maybe it closed after the Wilson Phillips Christmas album last year that charted at 135 in America and literally nowhere else in the rest of the world. We're pretty sure the door sealed completely after that one.



Nope. You wanna know how the trio knew its star was still shining? "We had a cameo in the hit movie Bridesmaids that really boosted our profile, and we had to take advantage of this." Um. Maybe Wilson Phillips didn't see that movie -- weren't they the butt of a joke in it?

And the irony bombs just keep coming. Chynna: "I really think that Jesus cares about this record, because he knows we're playing homage to our parents." Your parents, Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys and John and Michelle Phillips from the Mamas & the Papas? Who don't need their back catalogs annihilated by you three? (Did we mention that Wilson Phillips' new album is made up entirely of covers of their parents' biggest hits?) Sure. We bet that's Jesus' top priority this week.

Did we also mention how much we hate Chynna after watching this thing? In case you're not sure, she's the blonde one whose face has been reconstructed by plastic surgeons to make her look like a completely different human. She's pretentious, false, inordinately selfish (in the midst of recording their come-back album, she gives her band-mates one day's notice when she bails on them to be on Dancing With The Stars for three months). She's bitchy (at one point she refers to Wendy and Carnie as her "ugly step-sisters"), and she's irresponsible, failing to show up for important rehearsals. Also? Like a lot of bad people, she hides behind religion as a means to give the impression of being a decent human and thus prays every three minutes. Did we mention she's married to Billy Baldwin?



If there is a likable one in this bunch, it's Carnie. She's professional, funny, and isn't afraid to call Chynna on her bullshit. But then she goes and ruins it all by yelling at her husband... because he called her Carnie. Yes. He called her by her name. The horror! "Why are you being really feisty and annoying right now?" she whines at him immediately afterwards.

This TV show represents the very worst of television and music in 2011. On the TV front, we get to pay witness to a trio of women trying to drag out their extra 30 seconds in the spotlight, via the means of not one, but two, reality TV shows. Dancing With The Stars is one thing (there's not much talking on that), but Wilson Phillips: Still Holding On does the opposite of promoting the band -- it makes the trio look sad, desperate, and totally over (duh). Watching these three women bicker and struggle isn't going to make anyone want to buy their new album -- it's just going to make people throw out their old ones (if they haven't already).

And on the music front, the fact that Sony is releasing this covers album for a band that hasn't had a bonafide hit for 20 years, when young, very promising bands can't get a deal? Well, it's beyond depressing. If we were Chynna Phillips, we'd probably say a prayer right now. The best we can do is turn the TV off and pretend that none of this happened.

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Follow us on Twitter @SFAllShookDown, follow Rae Alexandra @Raemondjjjj, and like us at Facebook.com/SFAllShookDown.

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10 comments
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Eric Chavez
Eric Chavez

OMG..this is the funniest piece i've read in forever...you are an AMAZING writer. you should be paid MILLIONS.

Aaron Halliwell
Aaron Halliwell

This article is hilarious. All true, except I'm hooked on the show for the sheer awfulness of Chynna!

Will
Will

I know right! Chynna's a total bitch. But I still love Wilson Phillips and I will definitely buy their new album. You can't deny the fact that they have talent, can sing, and were nominated for  Best New Artist at the Grammys, which is an honor in itself. It is fun to watch them bicker. I mean, they're sisters, and siblings bicker, trust me...

Heinzelmann
Heinzelmann

They are musicians, for crying out loud. Why would I be interested of the private lives of people I don't know nor care about on a personal level?Let alone enjoy them bickering...(What do you DO, if at all?! I'm really curious!)

Heinzelmann
Heinzelmann

Dude! (As you would say in the US; I'm Dutch, so sory for using your slang, which I know I shouldn't).

I saw the first 10 minutes of this show and Googled it, and ended up here.The reason  for looking it up was that I thought I bumped into a near-genius remake of 'This Is Spinal Tap' the gratest rock-mocumentary ever made, as you undoubtedly all know. (Is that a word, 'undoubtedly'? If not, it should be, if so: you lingo rocks!)

How fake can people be, that it comes across as being real? Quite a feat indeed!(And yes, I know about Cher's son. Beavis & Butthead didn't get much older either.)

Bloody hell (No *beeps* please: 'bloody' nor 'hell' is a swear word –nor is 'bitch' if you refer to a dog, but anyway...), what went wrong, when did that happen, and what were you and I  doing at that time?

Thanx for the enlightenment, and thank you also for giving me the opportunity to blow off steam on this subject. (Boy, am I distoibed, as you Yankee M--------- would say, aight, my n.....?)

^Sorry about that: Holland, you know....

Heinzelmann
Heinzelmann

*update* I've seen the whole show, and I now think it IS a remake of 'Spinal Tap', only for stupid people, by clever (money wise) people. :lol:Still rather disturbing to think that there would actually be peoplelike that in the land that believes in it's own dream. (But hey: "that's the dif be'tween we an' you", whispered the man from The Old World...)

That said: I think the Beach Boys were one of the best bands ever, together with The Beatles (or 'against them', and the other way round, or either way, they sort of ended eachother anyway) and as a deejay I sometimes still actually play Mamas&Papas (yeah...)

Sad thing is, even if they die young, some rock stars leave a rotten corps in the form of spawn. (Please shut up about Ziggy Marley, Dweezil Zappa, Julian Lennon and the likes. Last week I met Baxter Dury, son of Ian 'Mr. Sex & Drugs & Rock'n'Roll' himself: what a disgrace!)

BTW I'm not particularly negative about your country: my girl is froTexas, for one thing, and this blog is nice.It's just that y'all so different! *head scratching does* ;-?

Eric
Eric

Yeah but what did you really think, Rae? ;) My goodness - you don't hold back. I thought the review was a little over the top, but it really made me chuckle in parts. That being said - it seems like one of those "so bad it's good" shows, and you've convinced me to give it a viewing!

Robbjmc
Robbjmc

I agree with everything you said about Wilson Phillips...but you're dead wrong that it makes for terrible television. In fact, if the premise weren't so ridiculous (and Chynna wasn't such a parody of herself), then THAT would be terrible television. The irony of it all (which may be lost on the trio, but is certainly not lost on the producers) made this first episode an engrossing and addictive guilty pleasure. And in your endless litany of "did we mention"s, you actually forgot to mention that Carnie can't sing! Hilarious! I'm into it!

Heinzelmann
Heinzelmann

Yeah, agree, it'sinteresting television. Although I'm shocked and amazed, that's probably the 'TV-Value' of it all.(Basically that's how 'Freak Shows' worked... The ethical side of a thing like this is always being waved away with "they're grown-ups and they are being paid quite well", but some 'schadenfreude' is definitely a part of the er, well... 'charm'.)

Josh Facade
Josh Facade

You're a vicious old cunt Rae. Wilson Phillips show on TV Guide is about women trying to stage a comeback 20 years after the fact. Trying to find a way to have a 2nd coming at a career and be relevant again when the landscape in the music industry has so dramatically shifted, let's see if they girls can pull it off?

As for you Rae... you keep it up with you your cute, clever attacks. Keep it up with all you vitriol. Karma has a special place for no talent hacks like you. You stick to the hatchet jobs Rae. Let Wilson Phillips continue to provide the beautiful music for us.

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