We fully expected craziness from the latest episode of "Celebrity Wife Swap." We didn't expect that one of the "wives" -- Coolio's girlfriend, Mimi -- would swap herself out of Coolio's life six weeks after the show taped.
Not that we didn't see the signs when Mark McGrath, his wife Carin, and their two-year-old twins switched households with Coolio, Mimi (who does eeeeverything around their house), and her three kids. Mimi did have a bit of trouble adjusting to the McGrath household -- Mark, a classic "helicopter dad," catered to the twins' every need and hovered while she dressed the kids.
But over at the Cooliohaus, we saw Carin struggling with the insane demands on Mimi, including scrubbing toilets and floors while Coolio snored away in bed...and when Mimi informed Coolio at the post-swap summit, "Our relationship sucks, it really does," we had to agree with her. Mark might hover, she pointed out, but Mark is there; Mark is around; Mark is involved. More to the point, Mark acknowledged how much Mimi takes on with two jobs, three kids, and no help.
Coolio copped to his selfishness...but too late. A chyron at the end of the episode informed viewers that Mimi had taken the kids and moved out. (And started school, because she's awesome.)
There was more craziness before that, too; below, a rundown of the 10 nuttiest moments (and our pitch to give Mimi her own show).
1. The McGraths' boy twin, Lydon, won't go to sleep without Mark, so Mark and Carin had been sleeping in separate bedrooms for five months.
2. Mimi told Mark that she works as an exotic dancer in Vegas, and he seemed excited at the common ground: "I've probably done business with you!" Not only that, he said it in front of Carin's father-in-law, who lives with them.
3. Even the voice-over thought Coolio was too lazy. As viewers watched Carin get the kids ready for school on 2.5 hours of sleep, the V.O. sarcastically observed that Coolio was still in bed "despite having 'only' 10 hours of sleep." Hilarious! …Well, not for Carin. Or Mimi. Things didn't seem likely to improve given Coolio's, um, "vintage" attitudes about homemaking. He toodled off to play golf while spouting sexist clichés like "a woman's work is never done" and saying he didn't feel bad that Carin spent the day doing chores on no sleep.
4. Mimi nicely whispered to Lydon to wait a minute before banging on a xylophone, and when Lydon obeyed her, Mark acted like she'd just split the atom: "Does that work?!"
5. Mark violated the no-hovering rule repeatedly and had to have a timeout in a tiny yellow chair, while wearing a sparkly propeller beanie.
6. Carin made lunch for Coolio and tried to get to know him, and if she had hung in with it a little longer -- or if he had -- she might have broken through. Coolio admitted to being a "mama's boy" and said he didn't know his father well, because Dad spent most of Coolio's childhood in the penitentiary. But soon he shies away from the topic, calling Carin confrontational and leaving the table. It's not an excuse for his standoffish behavior, but it explains a lot about his reluctance to bond with the kids (and about Carin's savvy in spotting it).
7. Carin did get him to consent to join a family ice-skating outing. He complained endlessly about it and called it "a Caucasian sport," but once he had some pads on, he had a good time.
8. Mark dreaded obeying Mimi's rule about putting Lydon to sleep, alone, in his own bed. We don't blame Mark; sleep-training is a notorious nightmare. Imagine our surprise -- and our attempts to figure out how long it really took sans editing -- when Mimi stuck the landing in, no joke, three minutes. On the other hand, Mimi obviously doesn't mess around. Maybe she really did break the kid of a bad habit that quickly.
9. At the summit, Carin was a little defensive about not letting her kids grow up, but quickly got over it. Mimi, meanwhile, was just plain over it -- with Coolio, thanks to seeing how present and involved Mark was with his family. Coolio tried to act hard, but soon admits straight out that he'd "been slacking, straight up," and that he got stuck in single-man, "selfish" mode. Great, there's hope!
10. …Not so fast. Six weeks after the show, Mark and Carin had kept working on things like not hovering, toilet-training, and family dinners. Mimi, having seen insufficient effort on Coolio's part, packed up her kids and broke things off with him, which is too bad…for him. We think she's got a great future as a life coach.
Twitter thought she could do better:
Watching celebrity wife swap. I line that MiMi chick. Tough. Assertive. Hard working. That's a role model. Now she needs to ditch loser man.— Diana R. Penn (@drpenn) March 6, 2013
What did you think? Were you expecting more drama? Do you want Mimi to come run your life? Break it down in the comments.
Watch the full episode:
"Celebrity Wife Swap" airs Tuesdays at 8 PM on ABC.
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