Reality shows have proven to launch unknowns to pseudo-stardom, with public hair-pulling and table flipping giving way to record deals, fitness videos and lifestyle brands. But can they help rehabilitate the image of an already established hip-hop star after two prison sentences? Maybe! How crazy is his family? T.I., who has embarked on several different endeavors since his release from prison, looks to appeal to those who hold family values near and dear by putting wife Tameka “Tiny” Harris and his six children on display in the new reality show T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle.
Despite not having the quietest return to normalcy following his last sentence, or the best history with reality television, T.I. is quick to gloss over his past in the preview below. “America, listen: I was in prison, true. I did my time, now I’m out. Now let’s never discuss this again, OK?” he says in the preview below. Nice try, Tip, but as Plaxico Burress will tell you, that rarely works. Luckily a litter of children and one frisky wife seem to keep him plenty busy, and hopefully distracted enough from anything that could stand to violate his parole. “Family is priority number one,” T.I. explains, before showcasing his parenting skills over a series of cuts where dad tackles difficult issues of race, economics and whatever a “booty tag” is these days. And yes, like many stars before him, he hopes to nurture his 10-year-old son Domani into musical greatness. Can you blame him? “All of the kids have hustle,”he remarks, this time using what seems to be the family’s “safe word” as a noun.
The Harrises may have an off-limits living room with kids who dabble in performing, but Tiny will have viewers know that there are no similarities to those families you may still regularly visit in syndication (“We ain’t the Brady Bunch, that’s for sure”). Fair enough, but will this reality show have the same fate as MTV’s recent gem Run’s House or mimic the poor, unfortunate train wreck that was The Hasselhoffs? T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle premieres on Monday December 5 at 9 p.m. on VH1. Count the number of “hustle” references in the preview clip below.