Rehab: Party at the Hard Rock Hotel is one of those shows I almost can’t admit I watch. It’s got drunk people, plastic people, bad attitudes, and lots of drama…the kind of stuff that if I were a part of it, I wouldn’t be able to stand it. Yet I’ve been sucked into TruTV’s reality show, which takes viewers behind the scenes of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, specifically the out-of-control Sunday pool party known as Rehab. The show returned for a third season Tuesday night and got right back to its old ways.
Hard-headed, hot-tempered Matt (whom I’m convinced hates pretty much everyone) is back even after being promoted to Director of Nightlife last season. I admit that I like Matt probably better than most people, but even I wonder how his blood pressure isn’t through the roof with as often as he seems to be angry about something. It’s 8:00 AM and he’s already saying he’s not in a good mood and throwing stuff into the pool.
Thankfully, Sharon the security supervisor is back to balance out Matt, or maybe eventually kill him. The two of them had their huge blowup at the end of last season and their relationship really hasn’t changed since then. She’s not happy because Matt has created the new “door host” position which infringes on some of the territory that security used to cover. Lo and behold, Matt walks right into her pre-shift meeting annoyed because she moved one of these guys to make room for security. He insults her age, she calls him names. Yep, same old Matt and Sharon.
At the waitress pre-shift meeting, we meet all the new waitresses (there’s not a one back from season two after Matt either rightfully fired the bad ones or ran the rest of them off). We also meet Bobby, the new pool general manager (the job Matt had last season), but he can’t be that important because he’s not even in the main credits and Matt cuts him off right after he says hi. I can’t even tell you what kind of a guy he is, because all we learn about him is that Matt didn’t want to hire him.
Chantel and Jessica the bartenders are back for their seventh Rehab. They’re busy fighting with plastic cups that don’t want to come apart. Chantel saves the day by getting non-Rehab cups that actually work instead. Hey, there has to be some comedy in the middle of Matt’s rampage somewhere. Of course, when Matt finds out these are not the official Rehab cups, he ges ticked off. I’m not sure he has another setting this entire episode.
Speaking of Matt, he’s trying to explain to Kenyon to suck up the fact that Bobby got hired instead of him getting promoted. Bobby makes the mistake of walking into this conversation and gets sworn at for it. He’s really having a bad first day, through no fault of his own. Sometimes I think Matt is absolutely right to put people in their place when they deserve it, or fire people who really can’t hack it. Other times, I think he’s eventually going to be smacked upside the head with a folding chair, probably by Sharon, who’s the only person who has the guts to stand up to him.
The waitresses are as catty as ever, piling on to the new girl Jonna (a Real World alumnus, who doesn’t even bring it up, unlike last season’s Danielle, who enjoyed bragging about her Playboy spread every five minutes) for being new. Uh, girls, you were all new at some point too, you know. You could actually try helping her out instead of ragging on her, especially if you guys are being forced to pool tips with her. You have enough people to deal with already. Look at the picture to the right, which is the definition of ‘big unruly mob.’ I would get lost in there and never be seen again. Yet they seem to be doing everything they can to undermine her. However, she gets a huge tip from her cabana and proves that she can survive.
Sharon and her security people (the ones Matt hasn’t moved) are busy trying to clear space for Wyclef Jean in the middle of this huge crowd. It turns out to be for naught when he decides to jump off the stage and go mingle in the mob.
Matt continues to pile on Bobby in a way nobody ever piled on him when he was pool general manager. It makes me miss the first-season general manager, Justin, who would have never talked like that to anyone. However, Bobby pulls a Matt of his own and fires somebody on the spot just because he used to work with him somewhere else where he had fired him before. That’s a first, being fired because you’ve been fired from somewhere else. He deserves the reaming Matt gives him for that one. His next target (complete with dramatic score swell) is Jonna, whom he catches off for a smoke after being told by her fellow waitresses that she can go smoke. At least he doesn’t fire her. If you’re keeping score, Matt’s yelled at five people (Bobby twice).
Sharon gets an urgent call for assistance to remove two women who are refusing to leave the premises after being kicked out of Rehab. One of them decides to be a bit punchy and leaves nail marks in Sharon’s arm. When Sharon points out that she’s just committed assault, she elects to leave quietly rather than go to jail.
At the end of the night, Bobby pulls Matt aside and tells him that he has a problem with the way he’s been treated through the day. Matt calls him incompetent. Expletives and accusations follow on both sides before Bobby quits. He didn’t even make it through his first day. Looks like Kenyon gets the job he wanted after all.
Cupgate concludes with Chantel being called into Matt’s office. He says she didn’t tell him about the cup issue, when we see from earlier in the episode that she did and he blew her off. The episode concludes with Matt taking credit for the success of the day. He may have made money, but one person got fired, another quit, and a whole bunch of people got screamed at. In other words, it’s pretty much the same as last season…which means I’ll still be shaking my head, and yet, I’ll still be watching.