Remember Alex Brown: Did Justin Bieber Even Care About the Cause?

Emily Abbate

Justin Bieber Alex BrownOn last night's episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, the world met the Brown family, who lost one of their two daughters in a car accident caused by texting and driving. Since then, the family has become extremely active in Texas, speaking about the dangers of distracted driving, and were seriously deserving of a new home and a fresh start.

If you're like me and weren't already crying after hearing the family's story, then you started to when Ty Pennington told the Browns that the team was setting up a "Remember Alex Brown" fund in her memory. In typical EHM fashion, the team wanted to do something fun to uplift little sister Katrina's spirits. What better way to cheer her up than bring her to see every 12-year-old's dream boat, Justin Bieber?

Well, let me tell you something about Justin. That guy is a sucker for attention. In fact, I have never seen such a shameless display of self-promotion masked as a charitable act of kindness. Let me explain:

Bieber is everywhere -- these days even more so than ever. Previews for his new biographical movie, Never Say Never, are showing in major cities around the country this week (before it's officially released on Feburary 11). And if you didn't know about the movie before watching last night's episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, well you certainly do now.

Design team member Paige flew out to New York with Katrina and a slew of her friends. The little lady is caught off-guard when, eyes closed, she is led into a concert hall only to open them and see the Biebs standing there in his skinny jeans and bowl cut glory. Awwww, how sweet! But within seconds, the moment is completely ruined for me.

Did you catch it? The over-the-top self-promotion? I feel sick.

Sure, I'm touched that he donated $1 for each ticket sold to the family's foundation at that concert back in November. And I could get over it -- if it was only that one time throughout the episode that he used the opportunity of the charity to advertise himself. But the plugging didn't stop there. After they unveiled the beautiful house, they showed us Katrina's room where there's a framed picture of her and the Biebs and a video message waiting for her inviting her to the premiere of his new movie.

And the kicker? Today, when you go to ABC's website, a preview of Never Say Never begins automatically. Oh, and it's at the beginning of all of last night's video segments.

Could this allegedly charitable episode scream "publicity stunt" any more? I'm not trying to downplay Justin's generosity -- donating money to the family's foundation is wonderful. But you just promoted your new movie to millions of ABC viewers, and you're only donating $1 from each ticket? How about $3? I know ... it's a stretch.

Thank you, Justin, for speaking out about the dangers of texting and driving. But maybe I'd be able to take you a little bit more seriously if you weren't stepping up to charity on national TV when your big movie's coming out.

Well, that, and if you cut that hair.

What do you think about Justin Bieber's appearance on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition?

Image via YouTube

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