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For fans of eighties glam and big-hair rock ‘n’ roll, this show is a cornucopia.
For fans of eighties glam and big-hair rock ‘n’ roll, this show is a cornucopia.

Life lessons from the ex-wives of rock stars Add to ...

And then summer ended with the Labour Day weekend. All too early.

A gnarly summer that, after the World Cup, became imbued with bad news, daily. Death, destruction, war and killing. So you ignored it, maybe. Clung to the escapism of light entertainment, the cheesy, the frivolous and the reviving levity of utter nonsense. The guilty-pleasure department.

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If so, Ex-Wives of Rock (Sunday, Slice 8 p.m.) is for you. It’s Canadian-made reality TV, vastly entertaining and mad. Four ex-wives of rock-fellas as they are now, documented. It’s third season is getting under way.

There are nuggets of odd information to be gleaned. For instance, according to Bobbie Brown (who was married to the late Warrant singer Jani Lane, appeared in the Cherry Pie video, and was once engaged to Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee), Leo DiCaprio used to be very annoying when he was young. She describes him as this cocky guy, prefame, who used to always greet her with, “You’re gonna be my girlfriend one day.” So she eventually allowed him to, ah, conquer her, years ago. She also says, “In my 20s I started using cocaine to lose weight. Then there was crystal meth.”

Yikes. What a world these ladies live in. And it’s all narrated with dry, knowing wit by Shannon Tweed, the Newfoundlander who, of course, got hitched to Gene Simmons of Kiss.

Tweed narrates the adventures of “Beautiful, mature ladies who became best frenemies.”

Among them is Athena, once married to the guy who was the drummer for Scorpion. (You tend to get lost in the names, believe me.) Athena had described her situation as, “I’m super-happily divorcing his ass.” On Sunday’s show, he turns up, unexpectedly, and offers to sign the divorce papers. Next thing, he’s talking about them living together again. Athena laughs in his face. Staged for the cameras, obviously, but distinctly weird.

And then there’s Sharise, ex-wife of Vince from Motley Crue. She runs a clothing company with another ex, though he’s not an ex-rocker. Her sister, Shanae, who babysits for her, used to be a go-go dancer on ZZ Top tours. This is illustrated.

Oh, there is also Susan “Blue” Dixon, who was also married to a guy in the band Warrant. Blue is now a pole-dance instructor.

For fans of Eighties glam and big-hair rock ‘n roll, Ex-Wives of Rock is a cornucopia. Maybe you’ve wondered what happened to some of those guys. Well, they probably put their feuding aside and toured again, for the money and the thrills. Of far greater interest is what happened to their ex-wives and girlfriends. What a passel of tough, strange, hard-living women. Guilty pleasure it might be, but there’s a lot to be learned. These women did what many young women dream about – they got a rich, sexy rock star boyfriend, married him and then … well, and then they eventually reached their 40s and are obliged to realize how long they have relied on their looks to get through life. Now it’s kids, car payments, post-divorce bitterness and attempts at making a living. Something for which few are prepared.

Sometimes we see how their kids react to them. Athena adores her kids. It’s just that she talks constantly about people being “hot” and desirable. In the kitchen she’s teaching her teenage son how to prepare a salad. She gushes that girls love a guy who can cook. The boy, deeply embarrassed, mutters, “Um, Mom, I’m gonna hang out by myself right now.”

See, life lessons. Even in mad guilty pleasures.

 

Follow on Twitter: @MisterJohnDoyle

 

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