On ''The Simple Life 2,'' Paris and Nicole play some silly beauty-parlor games and give a biker an extreme makeover

By Nicholas Fonseca
Updated July 29, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie, ...
Credit: The Simple Life 2: Michael Yarish
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”The Simple Life 2”: Silly beauty-parlor games

Excuse me if I’m logy, but I just woke up from a very satisfying half-hour nap. Oh, wait, I was just watching the latest episode of ”The Simple Life 2”! Hey, it’s easy to get the two confused sometimes, especially when things are as humdrum and predictable as Paris and Nicole’s so-called adventures in Spicewood, Texas. (They’re still in Texas?)

It’s never a good thing when folks who live in the general vicinity of a town don’t even know it exists. And that’s exactly what the girls encountered as they were sniffing out the Bahm family, the motorcycle-lovin’ mother-son team of Lori and Tyler, who may or may not live with Lori’s mustached boyfriend, Danny. I never could tell what was going on there — Lori is apparently unemployed, but she has a nice spread in the country. (The night’s best line came courtesy of Nicole, who told a confused Paris, ”Everybody else parks their car on the f—ing lawn. I’m sure you can put yours on it!” God love her.)

Aside from the girls’ feeble attempts to help spunky freshman Tyler with his physics and theater homework, there was very little domestic drama to be seen during this rather sedate visit. We hardly saw the interior of Lori’s house, and I’m starting to wonder if the woman didn’t study the first season of ”The Simple Life” rather closely. Maybe she realized that letting the girls past her front door was just an invitation for instant trouble (and a complete trashing). Or perhaps every family the girls have already tortured along the way was sending up flares in warning. So Lori kept the girls on the porch or in their trailer and used the opportunity to announce — on national television — that she needs a job.

Nicole stupidly suggested that Tyler ”rap” his monologue from ”Romeo and Juliet,” a suggestion that he half-heartedly ignored after it proved to be a disastrous way of delivering iambic pentameter. Paris, uh, attempted to solve a physics problem but quickly gave up and pronounced, ”I hate homework.” Really, girl? You don’t say!

Things picked up when Danny and a rowdy group of his biker friends showed up for a visit. Paris and Nicole can pretty much smell testosterone within a 600-mile radius, and they quickly flounced over to show their wares (or something). Nicole provided the night’s second best lines when a greaser asked, ”Do you girls need a ride?” and she simply muttered, ”Ewwww!”

I don’t know why she was so repulsed. Why, didn’t she hear the friendly scuzzball who proudly announced that he and his motorcyclist buddies ”don’t rape and pillage anymore”? Paris amused-slash-horrified the group by announcing that she, too, had a motorcycle — albeit a pink leopard-patterned ”Barbie bike.” If you listened closely, you could hear the souls of Danny’s friends dying all around her.

Eventually, the girls had to stop flirting and start working for the money that they supposedly never have in their possession. For once, the task at hand actually seemed to fit their typically unenthusiastic work ethic: They were going to be pulling shifts at Lonny’s Hair Salon in nearby Austin.

Their friendly boss, an unflappable belle named Jessie, asked the girls to engage in some manscaping with a hairy local, who yelped and screamed like a child when the girls started waxing his back. I know nothing of the hirsute life, but I had little sympathy for this fool — really, would you trust your skin to Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie? (Hey, at least they weren’t giving Brazilian bikini waxes.) Jessie hurried to scold the girls in her friendly fashion when the client’s howls started to distract his fellow customers. For the umpteenth week in the row, yet another silly setup proved that Paris and Nicole are unfit for the world of actual work.

In fact, I’m starting to wonder if they’re fit for anything — consider that they couldn’t even give a proper makeover to their next customer, a friendly lady who wanted to impress her honey for his 50th birthday party. Granted, the woman was poorly coiffed from the start, with hideous straight bangs (the horror, people, the horror!) and a pageboy haircut that looked like it’d been stolen from Linda Ronstadt in the early ’90s.

Nicole promised (warned?) the clueless gal that ”we’re gonna make you a hot, sexy beeyotch.” And, um, they did — sloppily applying blond highlights to her hair and forcibly smearing about 83 pounds of bad eye shadow on her poor face. In the process, they managed to freak her out with intrusive questions about marital affairs, lesbianism, and getting laid. The shock was evident when their charge (she didn’t give her name, and I don’t blame her) finally saw the results — she looked like a cross between Donatella Versace and Courtney Love, no?

Danny came by to check on Paris and Nicole’s progress and was rather eager to assent to a quick touchup from the girls, who wanted to remove the gray hairs from his mustache. But that wasn’t the only thing they did — later that evening at dinner, Danny revealed to Lori and Tyler his newer, hipper look. He’d been given a faux-hawk, too! Danny seemed to enjoy his newly liberated, metrosexual-friendly looks, but he was honest enough to admit that Paris and Nicole aren’t exactly giving Sally Hershberger and José Eber runs for their money. ”I don’t think Paris and Nicole found their calling,” he noted, a tinge of melancholy in his voice. ”I think they should continue what they’re already doing.”

Um, which is what?

What do you think? Was the salon episode a washout or to dye for?

The Simple Life 2: Road Trip

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