Maybe they shouldn't do it.
Maybe this isn't in their best interest, in the best interest of "them."
Maybe Doug and Jackie Christie need to re-evaluate the move they're about to make. Rethink the landscape. Recognize the history that something like this has.
Maybe the fact that VH1 was slated to do this a few years ago, but didn't, should have been the hint. Maybe it's the wrong time, the wrong concept, just straight wrong.
Maybe they just don't care. Because maybe, as they've said from the very beginning of their relationship, "We're beyond all of this."
On Oct. 5, "Committed: The Christies" will air on BET J. It's the reality show that's been in preproduction for the past 14 years. With enough rumors, incidents and scandals to make "Nip/Tuck" seem like an episode of "The Buzz On Maggie" and make "The Wire" seem like it was originally programmed for PBS. The Christies' show could become must-see TV. The second-best show on television after "Flavor Of Love."
But it will come at a cost.
And that cost will be their marriage.
Doug and Jackie say they're ready for Reality TV
See, if you glance at the track record of marriages featured on reality shows, it don't look too golden for Doug and Jackie.
Nick and Jessica ("Newlyweds")? Done. Carmen Electra and Dave Navarro ("'Til Death Do Us Part")? Apart for life. Travis Barker and Shanna Moakler ("Meet The Barkers")? Through forever. Bobby and Whitney ("Being Bobby Brown")? Finally, finally over.
All victims of post-traumatic reality-show stress disorder -- a.k.a. divorce.
The only reality-show couple that seems to have survived the inevitable Judge Toler visit is Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne ("The Osbournes"). And their marriage is on a whole 'nother planet Neptune.
But Doug and Jackie are from Mars and Venus, and they need to take heed. If their love is as infinite as their incorporated company's name, foundation and wrist tattoos indicate, then testing the fate of that infinity against the home-wrecking toll of reality TV is on the Jeff Daniels side of dumb.
That's only if they want to stay together.
Which has been something the Christies have made ultra-known since the day Doug entered the League (by the way, Christie hasn't officially retired, but he isn't currently on an NBA roster) -- and made infamous the day he was traded to Toronto. Their love for each other has been on display as if they've been auditioning for this reality series since 1992. And it would be a damn shame for their love to end the minute "Committed: Season 1" comes out on DVD.
Because the last thing we need is Doug and Jackie Christie not "signaling" one another, not in love, not together. The only thing that can come from a Christie breakup is more of them. Her book, his book. Her "Fabulous Life," his "SportsCentury." She said, he said.
And then everything will come out. All the whispers and "undocumented" stories that have been damned by them will be deemed true:
The "no women interviewing my man" clause that followed Doug from team to team the alleged infidelity that mysteriously must have caused that paranoia the riding on the bus with the team, followed by the riding behind the team bus after every road game, followed by the team renting a second bus for the wives to follow the team bus after every road game.
The reported fights and arguments with other wives the flights that Jackie was on and no other wives were allowed on the fact that female PR reps for certain teams Doug played for allegedly were not able to travel to road games because of certain demands made by a certain someone the removal of Stephanie Shepard as media relations manager for the Kings, reportedly because of certain demands made by the same someone.
The length to which the Sacramento Kings organization went, and the rules they rewrote, to make a certain someone happy the way she made them meet her demands the way Jackie Christie "punked" them.
The placation of Doug that went on, for years, was above and beyond any placation any other player in the League not named Jordan received. And you'll hear his teammates' testimonials, his haters' "told you sos."
You'll get the true answer to Stephen A.'s recent question to Doug: "Are you whipped?"
You'll find out what the Lakers were really saying in the locker room after the now-legendary fight where Jackie went into the tunnel to "protect her man" in a fight among grown-ass men.
Everything will come out, all of the aforementioned things that both of them have said are untrue. It will all become Simon & Schuster advance, as-told-to autobiography material. A Robin Roberts exclusive. A "GMA" coup.
Which will make everything they've built seem false and superficial, phony and faux. It would validate that there was an NBA code of silence when it came to their relationship. It would prove the outside world right about their P-Funk/University of Texas sign- hoisting dysfunction.
The Christies know the risk. But still
But still, for some reason, they feel -- even with the track record of those who went before them -- compelled to show us what "real love" really is, to expose us to a world of theirs that goes past committed into unconditional. The way every marriage should be. They're going to show the rest of the world that we are the ones who are strange.
That our love's bizarre.
But unless they both pull a Dave Chappelle right now, two weeks before the show's debut, their "perfect marriage" as they know it will be over. They, for the first time, will see what we see when we look at them: Crazy love literally.
From the outside looking in, they'll both see what it really looks like when Doug (according to a recent review of the show at the Television Critics Association summer press tour) admits: "Yeah, I'm scared of Jackie." They'll feel how Jackie's portrayal as a controlling wife will affect them.
They will see their lives, finally, from a totally different vantage point. And just like Whitney Houston got a chance to "get out of herself" and sit down and watch "Being Bobby Brown" and see how bad she and her situation really was, Jackie and Doug will suffer the same fate.
It's reality-show destiny.
So my suggestion to the Christies is, don't do it! Pull out of the deal. Let Viacom/BET take you to court, hire Starr Jones to represent you (remember she is a lawyer by trade, former NYC assistant DA), use the aftereffect of other reality shows as evidence that both of you noticed a pattern and (for the sake of your marriage) you didn't want to take that chance, take a plea, settle out of court, pay the settlement and go back to your home -- where the now "lost" episodes were taped.
Go home together. Marriage intact. Singing this:
The moon up above, it shines down upon our skin
Whispering words that scream of outrageous sin
We all want the stuff that's found in our wildest dreams
It gets kinda rough in the back of our limousine.
At least that way the outside world will never know if it was right about the two of you in the first place.
Scoop Jackson is a national columnist for Page 2 and a contributor to ESPN The Magazine. He has a weekly segment on "Cold Pizza" and is a regular forum guest on "Rome Is Burning." He resides in Chicago. Sound off to Scoop and Page 2 here.