Time has changed viewers’ perceptions of MTV’s “Newlyweds,” and Jessica Simpson is here for it.
Simpson appeared on the reality series with her former husband, Nick Lachey. During the show’s three-season run, the actor and singer was frequently depicted as a “dumb blonde” caricature while Lachey was viewed empathetically as a dutiful ― if somewhat resigned ― husband.
Nearly 20 years after its debut, however, “Newlyweds” has found new popularity on TikTok, with a new generation of viewers catching a glimpse behind the scenes of Lachey and Simpson’s now-defunct marriage.
In one expletive-ridden clip, Lachey condescendingly refers to Simpson as a “spoiled brat” and a “bratty girl,” prompting some TikTok users to deem his behavior “mentally and emotionally abusive.”
Speaking to Bustle in an interview published Thursday, Simpson was asked how she felt about the public’s initial impression of her then-husband while “Newlyweds” was on the air from 2003 to 2005.
After offering what’s described as “a better-late-than-never shrug,” she said, “It’s amazing what publicity can do.”
Simpson and Lachey split in 2006 after about four years of marriage. In 2014, she married former NFL player Eric Johnson, with whom she shares three children: Maxwell, 11; Ace, 10, and 4-year-old Birdie.
Still, she has said she has no regrets about “Newlyweds,” telling “The Real” last year: “I was so young, I didn’t even have a hold on who I was as a person.”
In her interview with Bustle, Simpson acknowledged that she too views “Newlyweds” differently now than she did in the past, but also noted that the show reassures her that she’s “still that person.”
“Honestly, if Eric told me I had to do all the laundry, I would still throw it over the banister and throw a hissy fit,” she quipped.
If Simpson has her way, her next project could mark her long-awaited return to music. Though she was part of the same late-1990s pop boom as Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, she hasn’t released a full-length studio album since 2010’s “Happy Christmas,” a collection of holiday songs.
These days, she’s considering relocating from Los Angeles to Nashville, and is in discussions about producing a new docuseries that would chronicle her work in the recording studio and beyond.
As to what a new album might sound like, Simpson simply said: “I am genre-less.”