Examining Rehab 4 With Dr. Drew – Premiere

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Another season of Celebrity Rehab is upon us, and as usual, we talked to Dr. Drew Pinsky about what to expect from the show. Below, we run through each of the eight patients of the show’s fourth season and Drew gives his initial impressions of the condition of each. We also talk about the high percentage of tabloid-celebs in the cast and Drew lets us know why from his perspective this was the most intense season of the show yet…

It’s interesting that so much of the cast falls on the tabloid side of celebrity – people who’ve been in scandals or whose exploits have been captured the paparazzi.

Yeah, and that created lots of trouble for us during treatment. They would go on their phones and read the bulls*** that’s being said about them. We’re like, “Will you stop it? Why does that matter to you? So what if somebody writes some bulls***?” They define themselves by what is being written about them, it was incredible. Bob and I had a lot of conversations about how this is a new world that way.

There were also a lot of leaks too while there was filming, which I assumed were not necessarily supported by production.

No, I think they were either from the patients or the people the patients were talking to. That was not some sort of clandestine thing [on production's end].

Was grouping these people together just a matter of casting scandal-prone celebs, or are those who regularly show up in the tabloids the ones in most need of rehab?

I think it’s a combo. I think the people that attract that kind of attention are really in trouble. But also, the network makes those calls, of whom they want in the show.

I’d like to go down the cast list and just get your initial impressions on everyone. Janice is the first one we see check in and she comes in calling herself “a hot mess.”

She is a hot mess and she has a much bigger problem with the benzodiazepines that even she knew. She immediately spiraled into a severe benzodiazepines withdrawal. She also has lots of trauma, but lots of desire to get better. So she really trusted us and jumped into the program and actually she’s still in treatment doing extremely well.

Any thoughts on the fact that this is her seventh or so reality show?

A lot of them came in thinking they were just going to get an acting job or they were going to manipulate us. Janice wasn’t sure what to expect but she kind of knew me and she always wanted to work with me and she threw herself into it. This wasn’t so much of a reality show for her. Rachel would say the same thing too, “This is about my life we’re talking about.”

Was Janice’s Ambien use any concern to you?

Of course. That’s the benzodiazepines.

Just from what I’ve witnessed in daily life, I get the feeling that people don’t see Ambien as any kind of a problem drug. Do you find that it should have a worse reputation than it does?

All these medicines should have worse reputations than they do. There’s nothing special about Ambien. The sleeping meds and the benzo’s, they are severely addictive and people just don’t understand that. And if an addict, somebody with a history of alcoholism or addiction, is on one of those medications, their life is in danger, period. I don’t care if it’s a small amount. I don’t care if they’re under doctor’s orders — their life is in harm’s way. Period, end of story. And that is sort of the theme of this season; that people hopefully will take home.

Jason Davis is the next one we see come in and he comes in with a series of very intense burns.

He’s got a lot of medical problems I have to take care of: he’s diabetic, he’s got leg issues, he’s got the body of a 60-year old man. I’m younger than he is! And he’s 24 or something.

Before he walks though the door, he announces himself as handful when he drops his bag and assumes that somebody will come pick it up for him.

He isn’t kidding. He is a handful. This is a long-term thing for him. It’s gonna take a lot of time and our goals right away become to try to get him to commit to a long-term treatment.

Eric Roberts is who we see come in next.

Eric is unsure about this whole experience. He minimizes the effect that pot has had on him, even though his family and friends have been deeply concerned about it. He also, as most pot addicts are, sort of feels like it’s gonna be a lot easier than it is to stop, when it’s very difficult. And he has a previous drug history that he also sort of has been managing with cannabis. That history will have to come out.

Frankie Lons comes in next.

Frankie is a severe, severe, severe addict. She was drinking a gallon of Hennessey a day, a woman of that size. She has a very severe history of cocaine and alcohol and prostitution and really has never been exposed to treatment before so I’m actually kind of excited to treat her. And she seems to want help. Even though she’s got a big monkey on her back, I really kind of feel like this is going to be an important experience for her. She’s a survivor. Here she is, still here.

What about Jeremy London?

It’s very difficult to tell what goes on with Jeremy at the beginning. I can’t tell if he’s in withdrawal, or he’s having PTSD, or if he’s had some sort of brain injury from drug using. No doubt he’s an addict. He’s had this weird experience that’s distorted and hard to figure out. And then he’s got problems with his wife. His wife is in treatment and she just got a seizure and a stroke and, oh my God. There’s a lot of chaos to dig through.

I was surprised that he sticks to his story about being kidnapped and forced to do drugs.

You should know, that went to court and got proven to be true. It’s still about his addiction. He wouldn’t have been in that position if he didn’t think he was going to get high with those guys. I’m sure of that. But they also didn’t expect to be held up at gunpoint, kidnapped and all that stuff, which is apparently what happened. Those guys are in prison.

Leif Garrett is the next one in.

Yeah, Leif is a hardcore, hardcore drug addict. He’s had a friend nearly die as a result of his alcoholism. He is a heroin addict; he is long-term hardcore. I at first didn’t have much hope for him. He was one I was skeptical about treatment. But during my first meeting with him, he dropped a lot of his BS and I immediately liked the real Leif. The real Leif is a very, very good guy.

He kind of strikes me as the prototypical teen star addict.

Yeah, he’s like right out of Central Casting. Just a drug addict. He’s a pretty common kind of drug addict guy.

Jason Wahler?

The one thing that struck me in the opening day was, I did his physical exam and he had clear stigmata — signs of advanced alcoholism. This guy’s in his early 20′s and he has the kind of alcohol damage that usually I’ve seen in 50-year old dads. This guy was clear to me as a hardcore alcoholic. I had seen him on the show in Season 1 of Laguna Beach or whatever it was called back then. I literally was yelling at the television like, “Is anybody gonna help this kid? You know how much of a drug addict this is? Anybody but me gonna speak up?” And evidently it took quite a bit more before anybody did speak up.

Rachel Uchitel is the last one that we see come in, and she kind of seems resistant.

She’s resistant, nervous and anxious. And let’s just say she has to test us quite a bit before she’s ready to trust us. I can’t really blame her. As you hear her story, that kind of behavior will make a lot more sense. You’ll really get a sense of why she does that.

And she’s also very apprehensive about the love-addiction diagnosis and being with a bunch of hardcore drug and alcohol addicts.

Well, let me just say that most love addicts eventually come to understand they’re also an alcoholic and/or drug addict. And they see it eventually. And once they start seeing what’s more in common with their peers than different, it really helps them to get better.

On the intensity scale, how does this season rank for you?

The most intense. It felt like Sex Rehab. It felt like that again. The intensity of that show didn’t really translate to television, but it’s going to translate in this show. You’ll see it. And I feel good about it too. In spite of that intensity, they get with it. They just do amazing work.

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  1. Maria Mercer says:

    I don’t understand this is Celebritie Rehab ,why in the world is this Frankie the mother of the singer doing there ? are they short on celebreties? she is a cheap ghetto prostitute ,only to happen to be this singer mother…..whaooo what a trashy show.And she has the guts to complain about being see it in the cameras ? after she has been prostituing ? this is a riot! the ugly drunk is a billlionaire I saw him in the Millionaires Club looking for women what a ghetto show this one !

  2. Kado says:

    Janice go home stop putting yourself on these shows cause your broke. You have talent so use it. And dont get all hostile to the gay guy thats just a drama queen who has so little going on he has to bother you and jeremy london your so lying about being kidnapped why would someone kidnap you unless they were going to get money and why feed you drugs unless they wanted to have sex with you none of which i can see from your story. And Maria shame on you for call someones mother a ghetto prostitute i hope all of them get thru this good luck and dr drew you do good work

  3. thyra says:

    just a note for eric , i have followed your films because of you, not your sister. you are likeable ,yet devious, strong ,yet suttle, hansom and rugged. that industry requires so much of you i wonder when you are just eric. i saw an interview years ago and thats the eric i keep, smart, sharp confident and in control. you are that person. reach in and pull him out again. you can. i believe with all in me you can . your heart is that big. praying for you thyra

  4. Pamela Durham says:

    Today is 12/01/10 and I’m watching what I believe to be a new episode of Ceb Rehab. I am weeping like crazy, my heart goes out to all of you, and I’m especially proud of you Janice Dickerson. Although, I try not to past judgement I’m not to happy of the billionaire what his name, behavior. I’m sure if he come out of the shade that he call his life I would feel that he is sincere and really want help. I’m sure you do maybe that’s why you have been living in your shaded life, you may begin to see who you really are, and not like it one bit. I never used any drugs in access, but that does not make me better than any of you.
    I lost my father at age 14, no sooner than they put my father in the ground I was being molested by the Pastor of the church. He told my Mom not to worry about me, that he and his wife would be my guard-parents and look after me. For four long years I was alone. So much for that, I just want to share a portion of my tragic past hoping that it may inspire you all. We have nothing to be ashamed of, I’m just grateful I had God there for me, the power of prayer is a beautiful thing. Janice whatever you do DON’T STOP I will pray for you and I hope you find the strength to pray for yourself, just try it. It’s like taking baby steps, just small conversations, like you would talk to your best best friend, (you know we tell bff’s everything, lol. But don’t forget to thank him over and over and over again everytime he does something great for you, He really love that. I think it strokes his ego and he really begin to do things in your life that you thought were never possible.
    Janice I really hope this blog find you and give you the encouragement and inspiration that you so well deserve. You are a very beautiful woman, honestly and I really admire you for being on the show, you will save many and win the trust back of many people for this unselfish decision you made.
    I wish you all well, stay positive and sponge every piece of inspiration you can, NO Matter where or who it comes from. God Bless You All, Love Pamela in Texas.

  5. Sherry says:

    I just don’t like any reality shows, but had to watch this one for Leif Garrett. I have been a fan of his for 34 years. I knew that Dr. Drew would see the ‘very good’ person in Leif, like he said. I know this show was taped in August, and Leif is currently in court ordered rehab. I am very anxious and looking forward to the ending of this show to see how Leif turns out in it. I love you Leif forever and my heart is crying and bleeding for you. The show is VERY hard to watch, I am crying. Leif you are VERY special to me and ALWAYS will be.
    BTW, I did’t know you had a girlfriend, Amy, she looks pretty young. I hope that your relationship with her is great and that it is what you need .
    Please let God help you, I have NEVER stopped praying for you. I LOVE YOU !!

  6. Lily says:

    Leif reminds me of Robert Downy Jr. I pulled so much for Robert to be well as I do for Leif. Leif’s eyes look so lost and has given up. Robert had the same look. Come on Leif! Know there are people out there pulling for you.
    Janice let the little boy, Jason Davis, roll off your back. I see he’s irritating, but the ‘World’s First Supermodel” should be able to rise above his little taunts. I agree with one poster that you are the symbol of his desire to have a hot woman. Get clean everyone.

  7. Tina says:

    Janice is waaaayyy to good for this and Eric!!!! You so don’t fit in with that whole bunch!!

  8. PATTIE says:

    i want to wish all the PATIENTS WELL. they have a long haul and its not going to be fun, i bashed some on the show last season, AND FOR THAT I’M SORRY. there were a couple of them i didn’t like what so ever, but its not my place to do that and i hope i can keep it real and happy. but there was a couple of them who brought hell in on the show and i couldn’t help myself. WE ALL HAVE THINGS WE don’t like about our selves, but i really hope you all make it, BUT DO YOUR PART. one is no better than the other. POOR SHELLY she already has her hands full.
    BESt of luck guys.

  9. PATTIE says:

    THEY ALL HAVE THE SAME RIGHT TO BE THERE. Janice wants to be here to help her self. she has a family to raise and she needs to be clean. she deserves a happy life. not being disrespectful, THEY ARE ALL ON THE SAME SHIP.. and its sinking. DREW will throw them a life saver and its up to them to catch it.

  10. Jessica says:

    You know, I used to like Dr. Drew, but his ways now have put me off. I saw the crotch move on Janice and was *appalled* that Davis was allowed to stay after that. No matter WHA,T there should be a right of safety – which includes mental – and for a woman that suffered sexual abuse? To excuse that?

    I’m out, I’m done. I can’t abide by allowing someone to be sexually harassed while vulnerable because it provides ratings. You cosign yourself to that, which is already very steep climb up from the hole you’re in, and you’ve already lost a lot of my attention. I get it’s entertainment, but I don’t find that sort of behavior to be acceptable.

    And I’m sorry that it’s tainting my enjoyment because I really wanted to watch Janice’s progress. She might be the Wicked Witch to many people, that might dictate her “role” in the show, but that doesn’t given anyone the right to lay their hands on someone in a hostile manner. You want them to recover? Then don’t be permissive.

    Sorry, Drew. You’re officially as important as Dr. Phil now. Good job ruining the good will I had to you. And I remember Loveline when it was on MTV late at night.

  11. Julianna says:

    Janice I am pulling for you. I had to help raise my cousins because my godfather left his family because of his heroin addiction. The one thing that you have always done is made sure that your children were safe. If you can do that you can pull through. You have come from nothing and risen to the top and you can do it again. You are beautiful and a riot. I hope you can get through this.

  12. Jeff says:

    I agree that the “addicted to love” woman seems a little silly to be included. Leif and Eric could do great work if they can get straightned out. I think Leif is great on that show about “Stupidest Criminals” and others.

  13. Arvid says:

    You do SUCH great work Dr. Drew. You’re compassion level is sky high. Thank you for the work you do to help others.

  14. Norman says:

    I can see why Janice sets off Jason Davis. Two reasons. One is the emphasis on good looks and the popularity and success that comes wth it versus his self-image as fat and unlikeable, and his ingrained reaction to lash out first so he can be the first to reject. He is acting out against the icon he sees. The other, and maybe more powerful, is that he sees her as a mother figure who is trying to improve him. I’m sure he heard from his family over and over again, “Why don’t you lose weight? Why don’t you put on clean clothes? Can’t you keep yourself looking decent?” He is rejecting of anything that makes him feel that old feeling of not measuring up. A lot of pain there, so he lashes out at whoever might remind him of it.

  15. mimi says:

    Rachel lied about being on the phone with her fiance when he died on 9 11. Here is a quote from an interview she gave in 2001 about 9 11, she is referring to her fiance in this quote: “He said, ‘Rachel, I just watched some people getting pushed or jumping out of number one building.’ I asked him if he was OK, and he said he was fine. He was fine. They were not being evacuated. They had no idea that this was a terrorist thing at that point.” Rachel then allowed her professional instincts to take over and asked Andy to stand by for someone from Bloomberg to contact him for an eyewitness account of what he was seeing. She then hung up. The second plane struck two minutes later. Not long after that, the south tower, the one Andy was in, toppled over and collapsed.” As you can read, She was trying to get an interview lined up for her TV network (Bloomberg). She was not on the phone with her fiance. She also sued her fiance’s family for $ from the 9/11 Fund for the families of victims. Who mourns like that?

  16. KimG says:

    I was really shocked to see Janice D. on the show. I have followed her on her modeling shows and she just doesn’t seem the type to have a substance abuse problem. Janice, I hope you read this because you are so strong and determined and you can beat this. Since the Dec. 1 show, a lot of people have shared their sexual abuse stories. I was also abused by my father for 4 long years and it destroyed my life. After the sexual abuse stopped, the mental abuse started and still continues to this day. Good Luck to you all!

  17. Tamara Shadle says:

    As heartbreaking as this show can be, there is something I find even more upsetting. The lack of empathy that people come on here & post for the world to see. Drug addiction is a horrific disease, especially when combined with other physical & mental ailments. Instead of coming on here & trash talking these people & feeding off of the worst moments of their lives like a parasite, you should try some understanding & compassion for your fellow man. If you have never been a drug addict yourself you may have a hard time walking in their shoes, but you certainly don’t have to kick them when they are already down. Keep doin’ your thing Dr. Drew, you CAN & HAVE made a difference in many people’s lives!!

  18. Ron Teren says:

    Enjoy the show but they have to stop with the horribly lame mus that crap?ic interludes. Where do they get

  19. Ron Teren says:

    Typos! What I was trying to say is what is with the lame music interludes. Where do they get that crappy music

  20. seenit says:

    I hope that Dr. Drew sees Janice for what she is, an attention seeking professional victim. Did anyone else notice the horrible way she attacked Jason Davis, with comments that tend to stick! Hence his reaction! Also, the way she lied to her “boyfriend” about how Davis shoved her head into his crotch. Come on! That’s not what happened, even though I don’t condone his actions, she, as always when the lime light starts to fade, makes herself the poor poor victim…. Please Janice go home and write another book about yourself and your unfair life, they are a good bathroom read for only $2.99 in the bargain bin.

  21. Holy Hell says:

    I can NOT stand that fool Jason Davis. He is the most disgusting individual on the planet. His family should dis own this idiot. WHY is he even on this show? He is famous for what??? Calling Lindsay ” fire crotch”?? He is a PIG. a HUGE UGLY PIG.

  22. Nicole Cochran says:

    I think Rachel is a damn drama clean, she needs to take her ass home. Shes not as good looking as she thinks she is.

  23. Caitlin says:

    So, I’ve been watching this from the beginning and actually sat down with Mary Carey after the 1st season. This is all staged for TV. and it’s sick. Dr. Drew is a total pussy (sorry, I used to really like you) and lets way too much antagonism occur. If he really wants to help these people he would step in and solve these petty conflicts. It makes me mad when Dr. Drew acts like he’s oblivious to the immature nonsense going on, claiming “it’s just their addiction talking.” So, being an asshole is ok as long as they are an addict? That’s just stupid and a professional doctor should know that.

  24. Jerome Marzullo says:

    To Jordan-thank you for saying what I’ve been trying to on other pages of this blog. Not only is Drew Pinsky “a crock” as you put it, but I firmly believe he does actual harm to someone who may be watching and believes this is hoe recovery works. it doesn’t. I’ve been there-a few times. I’m 20 years sober now and the antic these so-called celebrities exhibit would get them bounced form a genuine treatment center in a flash. There’s always someone threatening to leave and this incompetent staff then goes into overdrive chasing after them, following them home, etc. Leave once at a true recovery center and you do not come back. Abusive language and behavior would be grounds for getting kicked out. No questions asked, no hand-holding. This is a show based on ratings and has nothing whatsoever to do with recovery and having the tools to become a genuine person. I don’t know if these counselors have ever heard about the core concepts of humility and gratitude, without which any lasting recovery is virtually impossible. Drew Pinsky chimes in with pedantic axioms posing as concern and advice, but it’s not even CD counseling 101. Because Bob has an earring and a hat we’re to believe he’s “street” and has some credibility. It’s laughable if it didn’t do so much damage to someone trying to get well. Go to Hazelden or any other legit facility and act out like these people do and you’d be in for a huge shock when you’re asked to leave. Now. No cajoling no convincing. Gone. And you don’t get to go back right away. Most places will require you maintain sobriety for a discernible period before being allowed to resume treatment. Guess what, celebrities-sobriety is something you have to want more than the producers of this scummy show do. It’s something that you work on-a day at a time-for the rest of your life. When no one’s watching. It takes a bit of character, and I see none of that here. I see childish temper tantrums, abusive behavior, self-centered attitudes-nothing upon which to build a life of sobriety. OK, It’s s how but it’s deals cavalierly with a life or death situation. If anyone on this blog has an actual addition, please please turn this crap off and get some real help.

  25. Carol says:

    This is the second time I have seen Leif Garrett on this show and am shocked Jeff Conaway isn’t on again because I have seen him twice as well..I think these two do this so they can go on this show over and over again…DR. DREW..treat these patients but not on the air! That may cure them!

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