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Octomom Keeps Her Critics Watching

Aug. 20 2009, Published 2:00 p.m. ET

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Compelling. Controversial. Crazy. Whatever your thoughts on Nadya 'Octomom' Suleman are, you can't help but to watch.

And Suleman returned front and center to the spotlight Wednesday with a Fox prime-time special, Octomom: The Incredible Unseen Footage. The two-hour special featured never-before-seen footage in the mother-of-14's odyssey after giving birth to eight kids in January, as well as clips compiled in tracking Suleman's daily activities the past seven months.

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Reviews poured in nationwide over the scintillating TV special.

"The tabloid tale," the New York Daily News wrote, "was an oddly fascinating look into the life of a woman who alternates between totally dysfunctional and easily sympathetic. There was no host, or no narration, just off-camera producers asking questions and Suleman answering. Those moments were mixed with plenty of shots of screaming kids."


Describing the chaotic scene when Suleman brought the first two of the octuplets home, the New Jersey Star-Ledger wrote: "With thinly-veiled glee, she complains half-heartedly about how aggressive they are, bumping their cameras on the car windows trying to get a shot. 'What am I, the president?' she asks, a horrible parody of what an actual celebrity might say, puffed up with self-importance."

The Star-Ledger opined on one of the more poignant moments in the special, comparing Suleman to reality TV programs: "None of your Jon and Kate Plus 8 sanitized images of family bliss here: at one point, while on a trip to the park with half a dozen of the kids including some of the babies, her two-year-old started acting up, hitting the babies. She tried putting him in time out, which he ignored, and when she tried to put him back he bit her and called her 'Bitch.'"

The special, according to the New York Times, "failed to produce a second's worth of contrarian evidence that Nadya Suleman isn't a self-obsessed, publicity-driven lunatic."

"One of Ms. Suleman's explanations for why she had 14 children as a single mother is that she is an only child," the paper said. "That should scare anyone banking on a single-child family enough to reconsider."

The Los Angeles Times had more not-so-nice things to say about Suleman, calling her "the reigning queen of bad-parent porn. My guess is that today a lot of people are sitting at their breakfast tables secretly (or not so secretly) hoping that child protective services showed up at her door the moment the credits rolled last night."



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