Share This Page

'Jon & Kate Unleashed'

WERNERSVILLE -- After their father's rumored infidelity sent the show's ratings soaring, the youngsters who helped make "Jon & Kate Plus 8" a success are being de-emphasized.

The children will be sent away to boarding school to allow The Learning Channel show to explore more mature themes. The program's producers also announced today that the reality program will be rechristened "Jon & Kate Unleashed."

"The kids will still make occasional guest appearances, primarily around the holidays," executive producer Benny Temberton said at a news conference outside Jon and Kate Gosselin's home. "But we're definitely retooling the show into something sleek, something sexy -- and perhaps even a little sinister."

Since its inception, the show has centered on the logistical challenges the Gosselins face in raising their now 8-year-old twin girls and 5-year-old sextuplets.

The nearly 10 million viewers who watched the show's fifth-season premiere Monday were more than double the program's previous largest audience. The boost has been attributed to numerous tabloid reports that Jon has been unfaithful to Kate.

Temberton would not confirm or deny those stories but called them a "fantastic opportunity" to break free from a format that was growing stale.

"What we've been dealing with since the show debuted is this: Jon and Kate have eight kids. That sure makes for a lot of dirty clothes piling up in the laundry room," Temberton said. "By now, the audience gets that."

Once the children are dispatched to a far-off locale -- Temberton mentioned Switzerland as a possibility -- the show will revolve around the Gosselins' troubled marriage.

"To fill the vacuum left by the children, we'll have a mysterious stranger with some skeletons in his closet move next door to the Gosselins," Temberton said. "Will Kate be tempted to become romantically involved with him if she and Jon separate• You'll have to tune in to find out."

Temberton dismissed the idea that such a manipulation of events might taint the program's reputation as reality based.

"Oh, come on. These people put makeup on every morning before breakfast so they can be videotaped eating their Shredded Wheat," he said. "You call that reality?"

He also scoffed at the notion the Gosselins would be lonely without their children.

"They'll still have family around," he said. "The production crew isn't going anywhere."

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.