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'Hey Paula': Seriously, what was she thinking?

July 13, 2007 | 12:09 pm

Heypaula1 After three weeks of "Hey, Paula!" you really have to wonder what Paula Abdul was thinking when she signed on to do a reality show.

Or rather, you really have to wonder what her "team" was thinking. And there is a team.

We see her team every week, in conference, planning and carrying out Paula's jam-packed schedule, managing her every move to within an inch of her life.

So how did "Hey Paula!" slip through the cracks?

Paula is clearly not comfortable talking to the camera about herself. Her feelings about all of the "reality" going on is meticulously scripted for her, and while she hasn't stumbled on her cue cards, she's clearly reading them. Or reciting them.

The show's producers are especially unkind, editing together only the moments where Paula is at her most unstable.

In three weeks, she hasn't done much except whine. Sure, we see her busting her butt to stay at the forefront of people's minds -- even while "American Idol" is on -- but there is something maddeningly depressing about her having meltdowns over her assistants' mistakes and not having the right pants in tow for travel, while running herself ragged to sell jewelry on QVC and attend gifting suites.

There's no fun to the show, no humor in watching her wallow in self-pity, complain about her hardships and perk back up only when a fan stops her for an autograph.

In Thursday's episode, she broke down when an assistant had not replied to an important e-mail. "This is my life," she cried. She lashed out at the marketing rep for her jewelry line because he had not reserved some of the items before they sold out on QVC to give to the "Idol" contestants. Now, she said, she'd have to pay for them with her own money. (Average price per piece: $27.99) Some people have some nerve....

His mistake pushed her over the edge. Exasperated with her team and in tears again, she eyed the camera and said she couldn't understand why people don't treat her like "the gift" she is. Finally, an honest moment from Paula to you.

(Photo courtesy Bravo)