Greatest reality hits

By JAMES PARKER  |  July 3, 2007

5. TRISH STRATUS GETS TASERED | As part of her training in the celebrity cop show ARMED AND FAMOUS (CBS), pro wrestler Trish elected to get shot with a Taser gun. Fellow cop Erik Estrada’s jaw dropped as he watched Stratus position herself between two Muncie (Indiana) policemen like Samson between the pillars, raise her magnificent chin, and then take 50,000 volts in the back. Electricity pulsed nobly in her throat and she exhaled a sound of pure goddess transport; the cops gripping her biceps almost fell over. 

6. FLOWER IS SAVED! | Flower, dominant female of the Whiskers tribe on Animal Planet’s MEERKAT MANOR, was pinned down in her Kalahari bolt hole by the marauding goons of one-eyed kingpin Hannibal. Sticky situation — until a party of Whiskers skirmishers appeared atop a nearby tussock, silent, on their hind legs, peering down the slope with the fixed, even curiosity of foot soldiers about to get into a major rumble. It seemed to intensify, this humming unanimity of focus, until at a word from someone the whole crew dropped to all fours and charged headlong through the scrub: let slip the meerkats of war! 

7. MAX CARLISH DOES BLAKE | Spurned by drug minstrel Pete Doherty, about whom he is attempting to make a film, director Max Carlish in the British documentary STALKING PETE DOHERTY goes bananas and sells footage of Pete smoking heroin to a London tabloid. Pete tracks him down and assaults him, with surprising effectiveness. (“He’s got a much more powerful punch than you’d imagine . . . ”) Carlish, alone in his bedroom, turns the camera on himself like a suicide’s pistol: he’s weeping, his black eye glistens obscenely, and he blubbers lines from William Blake’s “Preface to Milton”: “I will not cease from mental fight [sob!]/Nor shall my sword [snurf!] sleep in my hand . . . !”

8. THE MARINE CAN’T TAKE IT | Of the five secular types incarcerated at the Monastery of Christ in the Desert, New Mexico, on TLC’s THE MONASTERY, 24-year-old ex-Marine Alex (who lost his leg in Fallujah) was the most, uh, “difficult.” He refused to get his head shaved, raided the community’s larder for beer (twice), stole a truck so that he could go drinking 40 miles down the road, and finally quit, 17 days from the end of his 40-day term. “God made me a crazy bastard so I could go over there and do his dirty work,” grinned Alex as he said his goodbyes. “Oh, he made you for more than that,” grinned the abbot, delivering one of his spiritual karate chops. Alex’s face momentarily registered the blow, but it was too late. He was out of there.

9. TRED BARTA IS EXHILARATED | A slaughterous outdoorsman once called “The Butcher of Shinnecock” for his inroads into the local population of bigeye tuna, Captain Tred of THE BEST AND WORST OF TRED BARTA took out his longbow and whacked a British Columbia moose. The unfortunate creature presented itself to him as he crouched behind a bush, shambling over with its long lip distended in curiosity, and Tred let fly. “One shot!” he crowed to his guide as the dead-already moose staggered away and fell into a lake. “A double-lunger! Oh Ben, my heart is in my chest!”

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