The Kardashiad, Part 17: Urinate on This EarthAndrew D. Bernstein/NBAE
Kim, Kourtney, and Khloe go baby-clothes shopping, a process that’s mostly about saying the word “cute” 500 times. Cute. Cute. Look how cute. Kim and Kourtney aren’t including Khloe in their conversation about how cute everything is, and Khloe gets really annoyed about it. “How much longer are we going to do this all day?” she asks. Nobody pays any attention. Khloe picks up a toy from the shelf. “Look, it’s a black sheep,” she says. “How ironic!” Nobody pays any attention. Nobody gets the reference. Nobody knows what “ironic” means.
“There was someone in the bathroom who just peed loud and strong for three minutes,” Kris tells Kylie and Kim as she rejoins them in a booth at Jerry’s Famous Deli. Talk about your good-news/bad-news free advertising: Jerry’s Famous Deli! Come for the famous pastrami, stay for Kris Kardashian listening to and judging the volume and intensity of your pee-sounds, ladies! Kris cranes her neck to gawk at the possible culprits — two mercifully blurry-faced women — as they emerge from the restroom, their horrible noisy business concluded. More discussion of pee sounds follows. Kylie suggests to her mom that because she’s a famous person, people might be listening to her pee sounds in public restrooms and Kris practically faints. Apparently she can’t go if someone’s listening.
And yet, a few seasons back, this show devoted a whole episode to Kris’s struggle with LBL (Light Bladder Leakage), which ended with Kris successfully monetizing her propensity to accidentally pee in her pants a little bit by becoming the proud spokeswoman for a line of pee pads called Poise and being photographed for Poise’s “Great Women in History” campaign dressed as Rosie the Riveter, an image I’m pretty sure caused America to retroactively lose the Second World War. She’s OK with all this being out in the open, and yet she’s uptight about people knowing her pee makes a sound when it hits the water. Kim seizes on this as an opportunity to mess with her mom, saying, “I bet they’re listening to see if you, like, fart,” and Kris laughs a profoundly humorless laugh.
Brandon and Leah arrive at Kim’s house to play Kim a new song. “I’m very excited,” Kim says, without a trace of excitement. First, though, Kim shows Leah her shoe collection so that Leah can goo-gah over it like a dumbstruck yokel who’s a-fallen in love with the moon’s reflection in a puddle. Then they play the new song. Just the hook, which goes something like “No matter who you are, life goes on/Say it ain’t so,” like a friendship bracelet woven entirely out of clichés. Brandon says “It’s a really beautiful song” when it’s over. He talks about how he and Leah have “worked our entire lives on our music.” He says the word “craft.” The first Brandon & Leah EP is almost done, but there’s an issue — over and above the fact that Brandon & Leah’s music is awful, I mean. Leah’s not ready to put it out. She’s being a perfectionist about it. More on this later, unfortunately.
In Kim’s guest bedroom, Kourtney’s digging through heaps of what look to be baby-registry gifts — cashmere burp cloths, practical stuff like that. Kim walks in and says, “Oh, I forgot I had a crib in here.” Probably not the last time she’ll utter that sentence. Khloe shows up, dressed nicely. Turns out the three of them were supposed to go to dinner at Nobu, but then Kourtney and Kim decided not to go to Nobu and didn’t bother to tell Khloe, who protests that she would have come over in sweats if she’d known dinner out was no longer the plan. Kourtney and Kim ignore Khloe. Kourtney and Kim pull something out of a bag and Kim says, “Alber Elbaz gave us this.” Khloe leaves and Kourtney and Kim don’t notice.
This pee plot, man. At the Jenner Associates offices, Kylie and Kendall follow Kris into the bathroom; Kylie sticks her phone over the stall door and films Kris on the toilet. I’m starting to think maybe this is a terrible TV show.
Brandon and Leah meet Kim for frozen yogurt. Paparazzi press their lenses against the glass. Leah talks to Kim about how crazy it feels to deal with this stuff all the time. “I think Leah’s a little bit curious,” Kim says, “if their album were to blow up, and success was heightened for them — she wants to know what being famous is about and how it really changes your life.” Shot of Leah staring out the window at the photographers. “Kim has had a lot of success,” she says, “and what has come with it is a lot of chaos, and that really scares me.” Oh, Leah. You have literally nothing to fear.
Kendall and Kylie drive Kris home. Kris writhes in the backseat. When they get to the house the garage door’s locked and she can’t make it to the front door in time so she pees outside. Her mic picks up the pee sounds. I don’t think I could have conceived of a development on this show that would make me excited for a cutaway to Brandon & Leah’s house, but making the “A” story about Kris Jenner urinating really does the trick. Cut to Brandon & Leah’s! Kim — possibly attempting to fulfill some contractual hanging-out-on-camera requirement all in one episode — comes over to hang out. “Oh my God, Leah,” Kim says, “we have something in common — we both have French-tipped toenails. I thought it was just a ghetto thing.”
There’s news. Ryan — as in Keeping Up producer Seacrest, presumably, although they never say it — has asked Brandon & Leah to perform on something called the “Acoustic Weekend.” But Leah doesn’t want to do it until the EP’s ready. She’s got tweaks to make. Brandon’s losing patience. “It’s like, we can tweak forever,” he says, sensibly. I mean, seriously, Leah. We’re talking about Ryan Seacrest’s Acoustic Weekend here. Where legends gather. Pull it the fuck together.
Khloe’s in Kris’s office, hopping around, saying “Jazzercise!” Kris says, “What do I owe this little dance to?” and Khloe says, “I’m depressed.” She tells the story about the baby-shopping trip and the story about the Nobu dinner that wasn’t. Kris tells Khloe that if Kim and Kourtney won’t hang out with her, it just means the two of them will have to hang out together. Khloe wonders what that’s going to be like; the last time she and her mom went out together, she says, “I had to drive her home because she was too drunky-monkey.” It’s a bad sitcom plot, but at least the scene ends without us having to think about urine. We only get a few seconds to savor that moment; in the next scene, Kris gets a call from Kim at home, telling her that Kendall and Kylie have posted the bathroom-stall video on their blog. Kris is not amused. Kendall and Kylie try to convince Kris that they did this to help her get over her bathroom issues; Kris tells them they’re grounded.
They fist-bump as she leaves the room. They don’t actually feel the least bit bad about what they did, you can tell. But this hour’s not going to fill itself with visual information, so in the next scene they’re at a recording studio, preparing to record a “pee song” as a kind of quasi-apology/pep talk to Kris, with the help of a producer named Victory and their friend Pia, who’s an incredible singer and is “going to kill it.” Victory looks like the redheaded kid from The Sandlot in an expensive fitted hat; you can tell from the look on his face that this was probably not the kind of project he had in mind when he chose his producer name. Everybody’s just hanging out in the studio lounge, feeling the vibes — and then, look, it’s Juicy J! We don’t see anybody explaining the concept of the song to him, only his priceless reaction. “This is a piss record?” he asks, suddenly intrigued.
Sadly, he doesn’t jump in the booth and lay down a verse. Instead Kylie raps, through much reverb, in a Kitty Pryde–ish anti-cadence: “I’ve been peeing since the day of birth/But my mama uncomfortable to urinate on this earth.” Even she realizes it’s terrible and says they need to do another take. Kendall sings something resembling a hook: “I want you to know, know, know/That everybody goes, goes, goes.” Oh, and Rob’s there, too, but as usual, he adds nothing.
Leah meets her dad for lunch, and holy shit, her dad turns out to be Don Felder from the Eagles! What a star-studded terrible episode this is turning out to be. Felder is wearing a scarf and a buttery-looking gray motorcycle jacket. Leah talks about wanting the EP to be perfect. “When we were making records in the Eagles, we would spend days looking at one word,” Felder says. I could spend days thinking of just the right cocaine-psychosis joke to make about this statement. Leah tells her dad that she’s worried about the impact fame will have on her relationship with Brandon. “I’ve seen success really change people. Not for the better. Not for the better at all,” Leah says. “You’re right to be cautious about that,” says Felder, who used to be in a band with grand-mal asshole Don Henley, who once threatened to kill Felder on mic for being insufficiently respectful of then-Senator Alan Cranston at a benefit, forcing Felder to flee in his limo and precipitating the breakup of the band.
Kendall and Kylie sneak their pee song onto Kris’s phone. She’s touched. It’s a horrible song, although Pia does kind of kill it. I’d listen to it on a loop for a week if it meant never having to hear another Brandon & Leah song. “Holding your pee is no way to live life,” Kendall says to the talking-head camera. “You gotta just go with the flow.” You could stand a fork in Kendall and Kylie’s contempt for their mother in this episode; I almost feel bad for Kris. Sooner or later nearly every Kardashian earns our pity, if not our affection.
Kris and Khloe’s big night out starts with Kris pulling up to Khloe and Lamar’s place leaning out the window of a limousine and waving a sombrero, and it somehow actually gets less dignified from there. Kris gets bombed on tequila at a margarita place in Studio City. “We should do something really crazy tonight,” Kris says. “What did you used to do in high school?”
“I used to sneak out and sleep with older men,” Khloe says, totally deadpan, because Khloe’s the best.
Kris says they should play a practical joke on someone who has no sense of humor. “Like you?” Khloe says, and Kris says, “Like Kim,” which is also a correct answer. They go to the drugstore and purchase toilet paper, shaving cream, and Silly String; Kris is almost too drunk for CVS.
Kim’s at home asleep in the crook of a body pillow. Jonathan Cheban walks in and wakes her up by making creepy crying-baby noises. That’s what it’s going to be like when she has a kid, he points out. Yes — the kid will always be there, unable to fulfill its basic needs without her help, just like Jonathan Cheban. Outside, Khloe helps Kris’s drunk ass over Kim’s gate, then follows her over. Charmin-tossing high jinks ensue. Kris is Wa. Sted. “This is like an art form,” she says, festooning a bush with shaving cream. Khloe writes KRIS JENNER on the garage door in shaving cream.
They honk and scream as they drive off; upstairs, Kim picks up a remote and turns on her security cameras. She is not amused. Kim and Cheban walk outside and survey the devastation. “This is sick,” Cheban says, in his weird little Napoleon Dynamite voice. He means it in a bad way — sick as in wrong as in the opposite of tight, brah — but he allows himself a little snicker once Kim goes inside to call Khloe and flip out. Khloe, in the back of the limo, tells her she’s overreacting. “Like, live a little — it’s toilet paper.” Khloe reaches for a little bottle of water and Kris puts her head in Khloe’s lap. Back at Khloe’s house, Kris says “Best night ever, Khloe” and then falls asleep under a table.
The next day there’s the inevitable confrontation at the Jenner house, where Kim keeps accusing Khloe and Kris of vandalizing her home, but nobody really feels like taking her seriously — partly because Kris is still a little buzzed. “Poor Jonathan and I had to spend two hours — ” Kim starts to say, and then Kourtney asks, “What else would Jonathan be doing? He would be [bleeping] your ass if he wasn’t cleaning up.”
Kris says, “I wanna hang out with Jonathan.”
“Yeah, baby,” Scott Disick says. It’s the only line he has this week. Scott Disick, everybody. Khloe picks Kourtney up and puts her in the sink for some reason.
And then it’s the big night. Brandon & Leah’s EP comes out. There’s a record-release party on the roof of a condo development in West Hollywood, at which wine and vodka are served. The show makes sure to show us the names of the condo development and the wine and the vodka, but I’m not getting paid to mention them, so I won’t. Bruce Jenner is there; so is music producer David Foster, Brandon’s ex-stepdad, composer of “Gazebo” from the film Secret of My Success and many other less-important pieces of music. No sign of Juicy J, though. David Foster and Bruce Jenner say yes to shitty record-release parties; Juicy J can’t. Leah sings a song that includes the line “Hot, hot, hot, it’s the heat of the summer” (possible Shaggs cover? Is Leah actually the most connected outsider artist in history?) and almost cries onstage. Afterward, in dialogue that has to be subtitled — so deafening is the buzz around Brandon & Leah, I guess! — Kim tells Leah not to worry about being famous. “None of this will faze you,” Kim says, but the subtitle spells it “phase.”