Return of Jersey Shore: Don’t Act Like You’re Not Pumped

It’s finally here.

I’ve been looking forward to this Thursday, July 29, 2010 for quite some time, and not because it’s ‘Rain Day’ in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, or even because it’s – coincidentally enough – National Lasagna Day all over the U.S., but because July 29th sees the return of the best and worst reality show on television, and perhaps ever made:  The Jersey Shore.

"If you don't watch Season 2, you're excluded from Lasagna Day, and chicken cutlet night, and surf-n-turf night..."

As a Garden State native, I’ve been beseeched to hate Jersey Shore and all that it stands for: the exaggerated stereotyping of Italian-Americans, the national propagation of the idea that New Jersey consists solely of super tan fist-pumpers who live the GTL mantra, the narrow and trashy portrayal of New Jersey shore towns. And as a Jersey girl, I should probably be shouting: “That’s not what the shore’s really like!” or “They’re not even from here!” and “I really don’t sound like that when I talk!” along with the majority of my state. However, from the very first moment I watched, I was way more entertained than I was offended or outraged, and for obvious reasons:  the show, as well as its absurdly caricature-like cast, is hysterical.

In anticipation of the show’s return, over the last few weeks I’ve tried to imagine just what’s to come in the next season or two (from what I understand, season two was filmed in Miami, and season three will return the JS crew to their original location of good, old Seaside Heights for the remainder of this summer). And so, allow me to descend into the ridiculous for a moment as I re-hash my speculation. Here’s what I’d like to see (but probably won’t) happen to our favorite fist-pumping crew:

I don't see any gorilla juice-heads at this country club

Snooki dates an Ivy League dude. The crew was sent away from the Jersey shore presumably to foster a fish out of water story, creating absurd moments in which the cast would be hilariously out of their element. But Miami’s clubs and beaches provide an environment too similar to Seaside for the kind of contrast that angle requires. Instead, let’s see Snooki visiting a country club to meet her boyfriend’s parents. Is there a better fish out of water story than the 4’9” guidette trying to play golf and debate current events with some Princeton alums? Awesome.

Sammi admits her nickname is the absolute worst. “Sammi Sweetheart” sounds like a Mattel doll that was discontinued for excessive cheesiness. It’s not clever, it’s not funny, and, as we love her for readily acknowledging, it’s not even accurate. Time for a change.

Pauly D can't find a good girl with The Situation by his side... only grenades

They all pronounce their Rs. One of the few things I liked about the last season of The Sopranos was that in Tony’s coma-induced dream sequence, he played a legit, non-mobster and lost (most of) his north Jersey accent. Hearing Gando pronounce his Rs was downright riveting, and imagine the positive NJ response when The Situation inevitably says something like, “Gulls at the Juuzy Sho? It’s like fi-uh,” but it actually sounds like, “Girls at the Jersey Shore? It’s like fire.” The state of NJ is less offended, the Midwest can understand what exactly he’s saying, and the core audience is, yet again, wildly entertained. Everybody wins.

Pauly D falls in love. From pondering whether or not his blow-out is bullet proof, to the Rhode Island-guido pronunciation of the word ‘weird’, Pauly D is adorable. Dumb as rocks? Maybe, but definitely adorable. Seeing him find the guidette of his dreams instead of traipsing around Miami picking up girls with The Situation would be truly heart-warming.

Angelina goes away. I have a friend who is fond of asking newcomers, in a sly mischievous tone, “And what do you bring to the table?” It seems to me that all Angelina brings to the table is a shrill voice and a heavy dose of annoying. Maybe these next two seasons will prove me wrong (to be fair, her first season appearance was very brief), but an Angelina-free Jersey Shore is totally fine by me.

No one likes you go away

They all go to the beach. Did anyone else find it odd that in the first season they lived a solo cup’s throw away from the beach, but still preferred the tanning salon to the sand? As DJ Pauly D would say, “Weeeeiiiiiiird.”

They go to The Osprey. For those of you unfamiliar with the actual Jersey shore, the Osprey is a popular bar frequented by a post-college crowd between Memorial Day and Labor Day. While the Osprey has an infamous – and often sparsely populated – ‘Boom-boom Room,’ in which the Jersey Shore cast might feel at home, it’s largely a very different scene than the Seaside clubs where they’re used to “beating the beat.” This means that the appearance of the JS gang would be totally unexpected, and thus the reaction of the Osprey masses would be utterly priceless. Showing up to surprise a crowd filled with your core audience at their favorite bar on a Saturday night? Right on par with Beatle-mania. I think the cover band playing that night would have to learn techno, and fast.

Of course, it’s incredibly unlikely that any of the above will actually happen on season two or season three. Nonetheless, we can expect that the whole crew will not disappoint, churning out some incredible one-liners and absurd catch-phrases, and Jersey Shore will continue its reign of the ridiculous. I can’t wait.

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