If you're one of the eight or so people watching Bristol Palin: Life's a Tripp, then you know that this family really makes you reevaluate the popular notion that the Kardashians are talentless, because they are least, watchable. The only thing remotely interesting about Palin's new show is the teen mom's 17-year-old sister Willow. It's unclear if she's suffering from severe middle-child syndrome, teenage hormones, or involuntarily being a public figure, but whatever it is, it's made her delightfully unpleasant.
Her complaining, her eye-rolls, her disdain for her sister's boyfriend, and her general embarrassment over everything probably makes her the most likeable Palin, which is saying something, considering that her first major headline was over gay slurs she made on Facebook toward people criticizing her mother's reality show. Willow is young and salty and grouchy. She generally speaks in monotone, even when breaking up with her sort-of boyfriend so that she can go to "hair school" in Arizona. "I'm getting a career going. You're working at an auto shop," she tells him, with a side-eye.
Her bitchiness, though, is understandable. She's been thrust into a spotlight at an awkward age, her identity defined by her mother's public image, her sister's career as a teen mom, the tabloid fodder that Levi Johnston has provided, and all the criticisms those things have brought on her family. Her experiences with fame have made her wise enough to know that her life has deviated from normalcy, and her youth has enabled her to hold up the false hope that things will one day be as they were. (Throughout the series, she's repeatedly asked when things will go back to being "normal.") If nothing else, she's honest. She doesn't pretend to be interested in charity work, politics, or broadening her horizons. (She wants to do hair. She does not want to live on the East coast or the West coast because there are "too many liberals." She's also concerned about being influenced by liberals in Arizona, a noted red state.) She's authentic to the point of being raw, which is a rare portrayal of a politician's child.