Gird your loins, people, because what I’m about to tell you may be upsetting: Kourtney Kardashian, the eldest child of America’s First Family, has split with her American Psycho-like consort, Scott Disick. If you’re the kind of person who knows anything about the Kardashians, you’ve already heard this—and seen it coming for some time. If not, and you’re subsequently wondering why I’m writing about this in Tablet of all places—it’s that Scott Disick is Jewish. Got it?
Their break-up may have been inevitable—few relationships can survive the incessant glare of the camera, even if the camera is there by the enthusiastic invitation of the subject—but that doesn’t make it any the less sad, particularly for the couple’s three children. Mason, 5, Penelope, 3, and poor baby Reign, who is only 6 months old, and already has to face life sharing his name with a low-rated CW show about Mary, Queen of Scots. It may be hard for us (and for them) to remember, but reality stars are human beings too, with their own thoughts and feelings, and I can’t imagine that anybody is truly happy about the break-up—as good as it may be for ratings. And believe me, Scott was good for ratings: a drunk Jewish boy with a huge collection of fancy sport cars, endlessly offering snide and sometimes slurred commentary from the vast green expanse of the Kardashian lawn, like a sort of latter-day Dowager Countess of Grantham in deck shoes? Who doesn’t want to watch that?
I have a friend who has a unified theory of the four original Kardashian siblings (Kendall and Kylie belong to a separate case study): They represent the four different sub-types of adult children of an alcoholic parent (you live in Hollywood long enough, you start to hear things about Kris Jenner). Whether this is true or not, I couldn’t possibly say—it’s a working theory. Kim is tightly controlled, with a stage-managed life—never taking a drink, never appearing in public with a hair out of place—and is married to a similar control freak obsessed with outward appearances (that’s Kanye West, for those of you who are still reading this in bafflement.) And Khloe is a classic enabler who constantly makes excuses and covers up for the drug use and infidelity of her husband, the currently unemployed professional basketball player Lamar Odom. Rob (remember Rob?) is himself an addict.
And then there’s Kourtney, the oldest child, who tried so desperately to re-create, and correct, her original family unit. She had the quick succession of children with trendy names. She has conspicuously consumptive values, which shows when she puts her children on camera, her fecundity utilized as a source of earning potential. And she chose an alcoholic partner, so as not to enable him, but to prove she could fix him. She set the boundaries. She put forth the ultimatums. She took responsibility for him, and gave him second chances, and now she’s washed her hands of the whole thing. Could she have done anything differently? Will it work out for the best? I guess we’ll all just have to hold our breath until 2035 or so, when “Dealing with the Disicks” premieres on E! Until then, let’s just hope nobody dies and spoils the fun.