More than what’s in Honey Boo Boo Child‘s GoGo Juice, we wonder what prompts the mothers on TLC‘s Toddlers & Tiaras to act so scarily devoted and almost unhinged when the cameras turn to them. Like, there must be some rational explanation as to why grown women would spray-tan their babies or have women in G-strings prance around in front of their little darlings. Short of a tell-all book from one of the mothers on the show (please please please), we’ll never know for sure what reasoning these women follow. But some of the mystery is lifted in a new Reddit AMA, from a former production assistant for the show.
Redditor thatg1nger spent some time working for low pay on Toddlers & Tiaras, though she makes it clear that she didn’t contribute much creatively and instead ended up “as a child wrangler/sandbag filler/food getter/light holder/child stand-in.” And while she couldn’t name names, she was still incredibly candid about the mothers’ general craziness.
We know that reality shows are scripted, and we’ve even learned of some strategies like The Bachelor keeping its contestants up til 4 a.m. to film their meltdowns. Similarly, thatg1nger described the strategy that went into the confessionals:
Most of the interviews are conducted using heavily-prompted questions, especially with the kids. They are goaded into saying things, and then will ask the kids to put it all together in a sentence and repeat after them when the cameras are on. That way, they can’t really get in trouble since the kids said those things on their own, just in bits and pieces.
…They would say “How would you feel if another girl stole your crown?” and get the girl fired up, and ask her to repeat things together to make it sound like one long rant that the kid just came up with on her own. Things like that, but that one is my favorite. Another one is “Do you think you’re the prettiest girl in the pageant?”
Sorry to say, but these have given us some of the best sound bites.