Tommy Lee fails Reality 101 – Part One

By Kelly Johnson

Reality television shows prey on our innate desires to witness the outlandish.

Upon first hearing the title “Tommy Lee Goes to College,” it sounds like a recipe for success.

Unfortunately, the only thing great about the show is the title. “Tommy Lee Goes to College” has taken the beloved reality show format and exposed everything that has become formulaic within the genre.

Within the first 10 minutes of the pilot episode, one can hardly keep a smile from creeping up just thinking of the comic possibilities as Lee walks around the University of Nebraska trying to figure out where he will be living. By the end of the episode, the audience is still sitting with a hopeful grin because nothing happens.

You wouldn’t know it from the editing, but the producers must have pulled their hair out in fists trying to get this clunker off the ground.

Some of the crazy events documented in the first three episodes involve Lee buying books for class (if you can even imagine!), Lee trying to find a roommate (the suspense will kill you!), and Lee trying out for the marching band (a fate pre-determined by the opening credits).

If some of the scenes feel suspiciously staged, it’s because they are. The closing credits include the disclaimer, “Some elements have been produced and/or edited for comedy.”

Lee doesn’t even need to attend class to receive a passing grade. That’s because he won’t be receiving any grades. The disclaimer also includes another juicy nugget, “Tommy Lee attended classes but was not an enrolled student at University of Nebraska.”

Lee taking the easy way out and not even enrolling in the university leaves the show a complete barf bag of inconsequentiality.