Maybe more surprising, retired Gen. Wesley Clark, the former supreme allied commander in Europe for NATO and a 2004 presidential candidate, is going to host the show with “Entertainment Tonight”/“Dancing With the Stars” alumna Samantha Harris.
We’ll give you a moment to mull that pairing.
“The general’s legendary record in the U.S. Armed Forces commands respect as he brings so much practical knowledge that will infuse the show with priceless insight,” Paul Telegdy, NBC’s president of alternative and late-night programming, said in Monday’s announcement.
When “Stars Earn Stripes” debuts in August, Todd will be part of a lineup of “celebrities,” many of whom are serial reality-series participants: boxing royalty Laila Ali, actor Dean Cain, former NFL player Terry Crews, singer Nick Lachey, Olympic gold medalist Picabo Street, NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” trainer Dolvett Quince and WWE star Eve Torres.
The Palins have emerged as the Barrymores of reality TV.
Todd’s gig was announced the same day that Lifetime was scheduled to debut “Life’s a Tripp,” starring daughter Bristol, other daughter Willow and grandson Tripp, as they move from Wasilla, Alaska, to one of the many Palazzo Foreclozzos in Hollywood — this one with an excess of bidets, according to a teaser clip posted by the cable network. Then, they will move back to Alaska — all part of Bristol’s “everyday life as a single mother living under intense media scrutiny that comes from her lineage as the daughter of former Alaska governor and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.”
Bristol made her reality-TV debut in the fall of 2010, on the 11th season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.” She got plenty of screen time on that show, making it all the way to the finals. Also getting major “DWTS” screen time: Sarah, who appeared in the audience many weeks in support of her daughter; in one episode, Sarah was interviewed by host Tom Bergeron.
Bristol made her Hollywood debut in the summer of ’10 in a guest turn on ABC Family’s “The Secret Life of the American Teenager.”
Sarah, meanwhile, starred in TLC’s “Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” which aired in late 2010; Todd, Bristol, Tripp and Willow also honed their reality-TV skills on that show. (About the time that it started shooting, Bristol and her son’s father, Levi Johnston, were shopping around a reality show about their relationship, but no network rose to the bait.)
Each week on “Stars Earn Stripes,” the competitors, teamed with members of the military or law enforcement, will attempt to complete “missions” inspired by military exercises. The winnings will be donated to first-responder and veterans groups. Todd, for example, is playing for Armed Services YMCA Alaska, NBC said.