This is a long post, please do not read if you do not like long posts.
Dear Starting Over Fans:
I cannot believe that anyone who has watched Starting Over since the beginning is even remotely surprised that it was cancelled. Last year was a total disaster. My reasons are are follows - these are my thoughts and opinions only:
1. Relationship Bootcamp!?!?!??? What a mess. That was not what Starting Over was suppose to be about at all. They all but lost me from the very beginning of the season with that dilly. I know some of you may have liked it but for us true die hard Starting Over fans - it was a major mistake. Starting Over's concept that use to be posted on it's website the first year was for women, about women's mistake's in life, to help women to start their lives over so to speak and help them get their lives in order and get them on the right track to "start over" again. To give them the tools and the courage they needed to "start over". Not a Husbands-Wives relationship show. That is an entirely different show all together. Last year they got away from what made them a great show in the first place.
2. The houseguests they had last year were just aweful. Boring, non personable - one couldn't get close to any of them really. I know I am probably forgetting someone I might have liked. I stopped watching the show early on last year. It couldn't even hold my interest. This was a show that the first 2 seasons, I would not miss one single episode for nothing!! I made sure I was in front of my TV when it was time for Starting Over. I scheduled everything around it, lol. Even though I stopped watching the show early last year, I would check it out every now and then hoping something exciting was going on only to find reruns in the middle of the season, or another boring guest who would come into the house, be there only 3 - 4 days, watch someone's graduation then start gripping about liking the new person that might be coming in - when they have only been there 3 days themselves!!!! They also did reruns of that darn Relationship Bootcamp again, sheesh - in mid season! Why were they running so many reruns in mid-season, they never did that before. I know for a fact they got lots of complaint mail on those Relationship Bootcamp shows too. I heard that on E!, and here they are rerunning the darn thing in mid season again. In reality, just weeks after they just aired it for the first time. They were running so many reruns last year (because the Bootcamp show wasn't the only show they were rerunning), that should have told everyone that SO was in trouble.
3. They would open up a part of a Houseguest's life that they weren't even in the house for and one could tell that the houseguest didn't even want to go in that direction but Iyanla or Rhonda would force them to "trust the process" and would make the HG feel like that if they didn't go there then they couldn't be helped or graduate. Now people, this would be a part of their lives that they weren't even in the house for. Then after forcing the HG to open up the can of worms. The life coaches wouldn't even follow through to the finish of the problem, even when it was possible to do so. They would abruptly drop it. They would just leave the HG hanging out to dry in this area. And they may have made the HG contact someone way back from their past or a relative that really messed them over. Make them do something that the HG really, really didn't want to do or get into. Then just leave them hanging there with no closure in that particular area. They would graduate them without even cleaning things up. The poor HG now is forced to leave the house to face the mess that Starting Over created for them. That made things worse for them, not better. Now, this wasn't done just last year but all years previous as well. For all the public knows - there could be numerous lawsuits against Rhonda, Iyanla and SO from some of these HGs. Regardless of what the HGs are forced to sign to get on the show.
4. The in-fighting between Rhonda and Iyanla was very well known. Iyanla didn't even want to do last year's show. Heck, Rhonda ran off Rana the year before Iyanla came on board and between the 3 of them, Rana was the only true (college educated in the field of life coaching) Life Coach the show had. And they let her go and kept Rhonda, who was a witch the first two years, if you remember. Also, Rhonda had not degrees in Life Coaching - what in the world were they thinking keeping Rhonda and letting Rana go. They had a great concept for a great show, but the wrong people in the positions of life coaching. Oh, Rhonda got a little better when Iyanla joined the show as far as her meaness was concerned. Maybe she was afraid for her job, who knows, but she toned it down alot when Iyanla joined the show. Rhonda couldn't get along with anyone it seems. The first year she was more concerned with selling her book(s) then she was her assigned HGs. That also ticked me off about her. How serious of a life coach was she. She was more about making money and her book then she was those women. She put up a good show in front of the camera but I didn't buy what she was selling and her HGs paid the ultimate price. Most of the HGs were so glad that they didn't have Rhonda as their life coach too. If you read any of their personal web sites (not the one the show gave them) but their personal ones, many of them mentioned it too. Also, many of them from season 2 actually talk about the Rain - Christine2 thing. They feel it was extremely unfair that Christine was told to leave the house and Rain was allowed to stay when Rain physically touched someone in anger. The show also dismissed, oh shoot forgot her name.....for no real good reason. They got scads of mail on that one too. However, they did bring her back this past year. I know alot of you didn't like Christine2, but when you stand back now and look at that season - I still have the tapes, Christine wasn't treated right from the very beginning and the little troll from Cincinnati joined right in and kept things going when things started getting ok between Christine2 and the other girls. Don't care what you all say, Christine2 was treated most unjustly of all the Houseguests in SO's history. She may have had another motive for being there - but who cares for crying out loud. The following season, one houseguests did alot worse then Christine and they let her get away with it and stay. I can't remember what it was but our little coffee clutch all said at the same time in different words, "they throw Christine2 out of the house but they are letting this witch stay and she is much worse and has done alot more harm then Christine ever did", that is para-phrasing. And several people in my little coffee clutch hated Christine2 - but still saw the unfairness of it. I wish I could remember who that HG was. You would know in a minute of what I am talking about. Oh, and the one who threw her food in anger around the room. She did so many horrible things - they finally got rid of her but they gave her chance after chance after chance. She did alot worse things then Christine2. They even had her on the phone talking about signing with Amorosa's agent. She had alterior motives even more so then Christine2. She got more privledges and consideration then Christine2 ever got. Another HG even went to Rhonda and Iyanla and told them she was afraid to stay in the house with her - that they were afraid of her and she felt threatened. They let her stay any way. This kind of thing continued until finally they had no other choice but to let her go. She kept crossing the line time and time again. They should have used the same rule for everyone - it was just horribly unfair. And then there was another as well that did much worse then Christine2 and was allowed to stay time and time again. Go figure. One couldn't help but to lose respect for the show. It was like they didn't stand for anything when it really came down to helping these women.
This show was doomed from the beginning and one of the main reasons was because of Rhonda. When Mary Biernum (I think that was the one that past away) died - the show was over. She would have never allowed Rhonda to destroy the show. Think about it, Rhonda couldn't get along with any of the other life coaches, even Dr. Stan. Do you actually think it was everyone elses fault but Rhonda's? I don't think the Relationship Bootcamp would have ever taken place. All those reruns in the middle of the season. Oh, also, they went after "celebrities" to be on the show, instead of the everyday woman and it was supposed to be for the everyday woman - NOT celebrities. Look at the place taked up by one of the celebrities or I should say personalities that should have gone to help a woman out in America. We had Tawanda (Toni Braxton's sister), Amy (A Senator's daughter), now don't tell me her father would not have paid for her to get what ever help she might have needed and even got her a life coach of her own. Then we had the Olympic Gymnast, also in a postion to afford to get the help she needed. But nooooo, these 3 women, (although likeable)had to take a spot on Starting Over, when maybe a Mable Smith or Sally Johns (fictious names) mother of 5, or lady with one arm, one on a fixed income needing help just to feel like a human being again and the other needing help to adjust to her physical body change, was left off the show. All for a rating boost. If SO had done the right thing and stayed with their "concept bible". They would not have needed a ratings boost. People just needed to find the show. SO didn't advertise the show very much at all. Many of my friends never heard of the show and watched "judge" shows instead. They didn't even know it was on.
The show went way off base last year - too many reruns in mid season, HGs were just not at all interesting and likable enough. The "in" fighting between the life coaches. It fell way short. I know the show lost alot of even their most avid fans last year, me included. The writing was on the wall for Starting Over. So it absolutely came as no surprise to me that the show was cancelled. Actually, I would have been surprised to have seen it return. It's ashame the way things turned out too. I loved this show. If you watch the first season - then watch the last season - you can see where they strayed so far away from their original concept. The things they started having the house guests do to "help" them were getting stupider and stupider too. I hope someone grabs ahold of the original concept and we see a similar show in the future but with different "players". Good bye Starting Over, RIP.