Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica
By Joly Herman,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Life is but a dream for Nick and Jess; teens OK.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Both are stars and teen superstars in their own right, but their lives are very sheltered. Jessica has never cleaned or cared for her own things, but she shops like crazy. Situations are played up to make her seem like a stereotypical dumb blonde. The couple divorced in 2006, citing the show as part of the reason their marriage failed.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Jessica and Nick are a monogamous couple. Jessica sometimes wears revealing clothing or makes references to her large chest; Nick makes some jokes and sexual innuendos to get his wife "in the mood."
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Occasional bleeped words from Nick.
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Products & Purchases
Both launched albums during the series; Jessica started a product line and wrote a book about getting married. She likes designer brands such as Louis Vuitton and has a shallow, throw-away mentality.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Beer, light drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Jessica Simpson comes off as a dim-witted housewife, which has helped catapult her to fame. Nick Lachey is seven years her senior and a more grounded celebrity. The couple rarely fight on screen, but their interaction is limited. (Note: In 2006, Nick and Jess filed for divorce -- citing this series as part of the reason their marriage failed.)
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What's the Story?
Made famous by the episode in which Jessica was unsure whether tuna in a can was chicken or fish, MTV's NEWLYWEDS: NICK AND JESSICA found a following based on the voyeuristic, I-can't-believe-people-actually-live-this-way reality of the show. The series, produced by Jessica's father, Joe Simpson, a former Baptist minister, tracks the celebrity lives of pop-star newlyweds Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey. Each episode takes place in a new locale, such as a posh hotel or a glitzy party for famous guests. The two give concerts, do photo shoots, give celebrity appearances, and fend off fans, but life in between has its lulls, and one gets the sense that they're ultimately bored.
Is It Any Good?
A big part of the show's appeal is the couple's natural allure -- Jessica is a lovely creature, as is Nick, which makes for interesting television voyeurism. Watching Jessica try on outfits at an exclusive boutique is reward aplenty for the average viewer, and seeing Nick lounge poolside, beer in hand, is a convincing advertisement for the "good life." But the couple's interactions are shallow and trite -- though one has to wonder if Jessica plays the ditz for the audience because she enjoys the reaction that she inevitably receives. Nick is the brighter bulb, but his patience seems to wear thin as the series continues.
There's not much substance to Newlyweds, but it's an interesting slice of contrived contemporary Americana. These two make the American Dream seem easy -- maybe a little too easy, considering that they divorced in 2006.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the concept of commitment. How can Nick be expected to commit to the whole package of the Simpson family -- Jessica, Mom, Dad, and the television crew? Is this going to make things easier or more difficult for them? How is Jessica pampered? Does her starlet nature help or hinder her personal development? Does she have any say in her life's course? Can life be too easy? After this show ended, the couple divorced. How do you think the show impacted their marriage?
- Premiere date: August 19, 2003
- Cast: Jessica Simpson, Nick Lachey
- Network: MTV
- Genre: Reality TV
- TV rating: TV-PG
- Last updated: February 28, 2022
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