Sister P, will your reign of terror never cease?!?
When we first meet her, New York is sleeping…
…in a full face of makeup. You know, it seems ridiculous, but this is reality TV and on top of that, it is New York. She’s done weirder stuff. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that she eats lipstick. In fact, I’m surprised that she has any left for her face, since I know she eats it. You know how much she loves food and, uh…non-food.
Anyway, she’s sleeping on a blowup bed because Sister P is still in town, inconveniencing all who cross her path. It’s kind of fascinating that all of the effort that New York puts into being so damn aggressive converts right into effort put into being passive when Sister P’s around. She’s practically sleeping at the old woman’s feet! Watch the razor-sculpted toenails, Tiff-Tiff!
And then, a call from Chuck.
Has she ever heard of the group Little Jackie? They sound kind of familiar, she lies. “Well, they’re kind of a hot group,” says Chuck, talking about a musical act that, at the time of filming, had nothing released under that name. So everyone’s just lying to each other. How nice. Anyway, they want New York to record some backing vocals on their track and…
Well, they’ve come to the right place! What New York lacks in talent and musical knowledge, she certainly makes up for in pep. It’s gotten her this far, you know? But first, there needs to be some vocal coaching. And before that, even, Lizza must come to help New York on her way.
But that won’t be happening today. Lizza calls New York to tell her she won’t be working today. Sister P snatches the phone away and says, “What, you got your period?” It sounds rude, but it’s right. Lizza’s cramps have got her down, or so she claims. And that’s saying nothing of the pain in the gut that Sister P’s presence has administered!
Having seemingly no concept about how her terrorism affects people, or perhaps expecting people to both be destroyed by it and to mend instantly, Sister P screams on the phone…
“Get heeeeere, get here now!” She sounds like what razors would sound like if they could shriek. Despite the cordial invite, Lizza declines. God, Lizza is the best, you know? When’s I Love Lizza coming on? If ever there were a spin-off that needed to be made, surely that is it. Just for the sake of programming karma, even.
Anyway, since Lizza isn’t coming in and since Sister Patterson is hellbent on dooming Tiffany’s career as much as she possibly can and thus won’t drive her to the vocal lesson, they must call a cab.
To the driver, Sister P is, in a word, evil. She complains about the smell, saying, “Why the hell this cab smell like onions?” Uh, because you didn’t clean under your talons? Seriously, I bet she eats onions like most people eat apples. Stop hitting yourself! Stop hitting yourself! New York backs this up and wonders if the driver wasn’t eating a jam-and-onion sandwich in there before he picked them up. Yeah, because before he picked them up, he’d gone through the drive-thru of Tiffany’s Imagination.
Sis P barks a series of orders at the driver, each less intelligible than the last. “Put your hands on that st…driving wheel!” She shrieks. Her entitled sense of rage is causing her to second guess herself and make up new names for things that she clearly knows the real names of. This is Sister P’s way of innovating. Seriously, “driving wheel?”
She’s so outrageously difficult that you know she’s praying they’ll get in a head-on collision, just so it’ll give more fodder to her rage.
They arrive at the vocal lesson, where Tiffany’s instructor forces her to do a number of really ridiculous-sounding and -looking vocal warm-ups…
I mean, really. If you’ve ever wondered what Tiffany looks like when she’s, uh, doing her business.
…wonder no more. At one point, her instructor has her sing “Amazing Grace.” Since Sister Patterson is so Christlike and all, she can’t resist joining in.
I didn’t take a sound file of that. You’re welcome.
Once home, Tiff receives another call from Lizza.
As long as Sister P is in the house, Lizza’s staying away. Tiffany comes just short of accepting this. “I just can’t get into another verbal abusive argument,” says Lizza. As opposed to the emotionally abusive arguments she usually gets in as part of her job? Whatever, you can’t blame her for wanting to stay far away.
It’s time to hit the recording studio, so Tiffany talks to her mom about the day ahead. As she’s doing this, Sister P’s eyes roll back…
…and she starts babbling in tongues and pea soup comes out of her mouth and she yells at it for being green.
They call a cab and coincidence of coincidences! They get the same driver. Sister P is relatively subdued this time. Pea soup a la scapegoat will do that to your disposition.
They arrive at the studio to meet Imani and Adam, the members of Little Jackie:
New York enters the booth and begins her ridiculous warm-ups.
Imani and Adam being, you know, human and all, kind of laugh and decide that they don’t really need to listen to it.
Sister Patterson takes the opportunity to get angry about this. Well, it has been two minutes since her last outburst. You knew there was one just around the corner. “Don’t make her out of a joke,” says Sister P in typical English-mangling fashion. But the thing is that New York was made out of a joke. And that joke’s name is Sister P.
Imani and Adam are kind of like, “Yeah, whatever.” The session proceeds. Tiffany lays down some vocals.
She’s not painful, per se. Like, my ears aren’t bleeding so you know, she does better than I ever would have expected. Score one for Tiff! Back in front of the board, Sister Patterson yammers something about asking New York to make it “sweeter,” as if that woman has even a vague concept of sweetness. She’s ignored, so she says it again. Imani doesn’t want her help. But Sister P knows what Tiffany’s voice sounds like and how to get the desired performance from her daughter. “F*** you”s are soon traded and finally New York realizes that there’s a commotion on the other side of the glass.
That reaction shot alone makes Sister P’s entire appearance on this show worthwhile.
Tiff intervenes and takes her mom outside. While they’re away, Imani mocks Sister P’s assertion that because New York is her daughter, she knows what her voice sounds like. “I have a cat, I know what her poop smells like.” AWESOME. OK, so I Love Imani could air back-to-back with I Love Lizza.
Eventually, New York returns without her mother. She’s ready to record. Imani asks her to do some ad libs that are “cute, sexy and young.” Uh yeah. Kind of a tall order. Just saying.
And so, we’re eventually treated to the sight and sound of New York rapping. Her first rap goes, “To all my haters right now you can kiss my ass because I’m Miss New York and I’m too fast for myself because I’m on top of the world. My s*** is so tight. Oooh, girl!” Ooh, girl is right. The Pillsbury Doughboy has more rhythm than her. Literally, he does! She follows this up with the linguistic masterpiece, “I could kinda get used to this because right now I got everybody listening to what’s in my head. It’s your girl, Miss Motherf***in’ New York!” I love that what’s in her head is her name over and over. I bet the “I” in “Miss” is dotted with a heart.
So she finishes and Imani’s really nice and says she did a good job.
After, Imani advises her what basically everyone else in the world has advised her: drop the mom. Imani says this more respectfully than she needs to, and yet New York flies off the handle of course and says, “I’m trying to stay positive, but this bitch is getting on my nerves.” Cute. And New York is totally aware of how her mother is a pain in the ass because she’s noted this herself. She’s all mad that people are criticizing the thorn in her side because it’s her thorn, damn it!
Whatever. They leave and I have to say that when New York goes to retrieve Sister P…
…she’s looking ferocious in the best possible way. I’m sorry, that screenshot is so hot. The glamor is undeniable.
At home, New York and Sister P share a quiet dinner.
It is somber because Sister P knows what’s coming. “Having you out has been beautiful, but I’m starting to notice that I might have to break away from you a little bit,” says Tiff. She now knows that she has to conquer Hollywood on her own, and all it took was everyone she encountered to run from Sister P screaming, “Get me away from that woman!” Still, it’s a lesson learned. Sister P doesn’t protest. In fact, she’s totally amenable to the idea, though, she does say something weird like, “They’re not going to turn you into a Lindsay Lohan.” Note to New York: stay away from the butch girl DJs. Tiffany is elated that her mother’s taking it so well. “I thought she’d be angry and punch me in my jaw,“she says. I’m sure all those who have ever cowered in fear over the unpredictabilty of a loved one can relate.
And then, Sister P says her goodbyes…
…and so does Tiff-Tiff in the most dramatic way possible.
Given the nature of their visit, I would have expected nothing less.