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Rubbernecking: Rock of Love Bus with Bret Michaels, Week Nine

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When we last checked in a little over a month ago on the adventures of the pink bus and the blue bus, blondes vs. brunettes, skanks vs. kranks, etcetera, Bret Michaels was bored by the pickin's and had chosen three new ho's at a strip club in St. Louis to join the fray. The tour, which started in Louisville, reaches St. Augustine, Florida this week. Our intrepid rockers have rolled through Indy, Champaign, Chicago, and Nashville in the weeks since we last looked in on them. They've suffered through the fake wedding vow challenge, the ice skating challenge, the mudbowl challenge, the roadie challenge, and even - horrors! - the babysitting kids at a pool party challenge.

Brett confesses at the beginning of this week's show that he's got it bad for Ashley. She's the one who looks like White Trash Barbie and provides probably the best entertainment of the entire um, cat posse. Week 9 begins with Brett saying buh-bye to Farrah, who's apparently Ashley's BFF. She's really bummed out by this development, as Brett has opted to keep Taya, the 2009 Penthouse Pet of the Year (duh!), instead.

The bus (there is now only one bus since six babes are left) pulls in to St. Augustine and the skanky sextet drag their overstuffed suitcases into a lovely little boutique hotel. Brett summons them to come see him and then brings in his ex from Rock of Love 2, Ambre Lake. Ambre, he explains, is here as a friend to help him find the girl best suited to him and his lifestyle. Then he also brings out ROL alum Heather to assist Ambre in this noble cause. Apparently both these girls are now his buddies.

But of course the surprises don't end there. This is the de rigueur episode when the girls' ex-boyfriends are brought in to dish on them so that Brett can make sure that the girls are there for the right reason. "An ex-boyfriend is a lot like a living sex tape," he tells the um, cat posse. "You never know when they're gonna surface and you never know how much you're gonna expose."

Well, talk about separating the wheat from the chaff! First the guys go through having drinks with Ambre and Heather, who proceed to find out all sorts of dirt. Then they stage a fake show-within-a-show called Wassa Goin' On Court in which A. and H. are guest judges and they question the couples while Brett watches all from a closed circuit TV, very Michael Jackson.

Mindy and Taya pass all the tests with flying colors. Meanwhile, Jamie's ex is a guy named Hamboussi (you can't make stuff like this up) who looks like an extra in From Dusk Till Dawn and is a member of a band that she followed around. Hey Jamie? The 80's called and they want their glittery head scarf back . . . Jamie is, by the way, the lone survivor of the three girls who joined the tour from the strip club in St. Louis.

Brittanya's ex is a real showoff named Royal T wearing a pink b-boy hat who reveals to A. and H. that they still have sex ("that girl is a *** freak") although Brittanya claims he is not her ex, he was just a booty call. Beverly's ex-husband didn't show up at all, which makes her sadder than sad and she has pretty much a meltdown about it. I'm confused about this; seems to me she would be the best off of the bunch since no one is wiping the floor with her reputation. But that's me.

You might have guessed it, but the best is Ashley by far. Her ex, James, is also the father of her child, shares her home and her bed, and as an aside, his name is tattooed on the huge silicone landscape of her right breast. He looks like he walked off the set of a Quentin Tarantino film. Ashley has a freakout as she waits for the audience with A. and H. She wants to leave the premises, she doesn't want to go in, then she decides instead to lie down on the floor near the chairs the others are sitting on. Can you say - totally shit-faced drunk?

Drama, drama, drama! Brittanya claims she hasn't had sex with Royal T in about a year which flatly contradicts his statement earlier to A. and H. that they had sex right before she came out to be on the show. "Lies make baby Jesus cry," says Brett as he watches this on the monitor. Brittanya is provoked so much by Heather that she gets up and throws a punch at her and then spits at her. Brett finally comes to the conclusion, nine weeks in, that she is low down trailer trash. Oh yeah, and by the way Brett is sporting a Brett Michaels Band t-shirt. Yawn.

This week's elimination is tremendously entertaining. Taya (who earlier said proudly, "The word stripper doesn't apply to me; I'm a burlesque feature dancer") gets to stay. Beverly (who Ashley refers to as a "linebacker") gets to stay (although she practically has "I'm next" on her forehead). Jamie gets to continue her groupie dream for another week. And Mindy, everyone's favorite, also stays on.

Brittanya is sent packing and, full of remorse, says goodbye to Brett in a pretty much unintelligible speech. And that's the last we see of her and her cheek studs (until the reunion show, anyway). And Ashley, who's decked out for the occasion like K-Mart Barbarella in a slutty sliver of silver cloth with her ta-tas practically hanging out, is chucked out as well. In her exit interview she waxes overdramatic that she can't believe she and Brittanya are both being let go. "I mean!" she says and gestures down at her smokin' hot bod, "what the hell is going on here?"

No more blondes - it's the final four! The bus pulls away and we're left wondering once more why we used an hour of our lives to watch this tacky trash. Rock and Roll, Hootchie Koo!

Rock of Love Bus airs 9pm on Sunday nights on VH1

Read more of Holly Cara Price's ruminations on the slings and arrows of outrageous pop culture at Snoop* Du Jour.