Kris Jenner has taken a lot of flack for "pimping out" her daughters, Khloe, Kourtney, and especially Kim. She's been blamed for everything from being the brains behind Kim's sex tape to arranging Kim's for-TV-only marriage to Kris Humphries. Kathy Griffin called her an "old school pimp -- top coat and fedora." But Kris Jenner had her predecessors. And one of the most famous of them, Teri Shields, mother of Brooke, has died of dementia-related illness. Teri was Brooke's momager before we even knew the word momager. She guided young Brooke through a career that was shocking for the time. Hell, it would be shocking now. Brooke was only 11 when she played a prostitute in Pretty Baby. At 14, she cooed, "You want to know what comes between me and my Calvins? Nothing." Kris could take some lessons from Teri!
That same year, Brooke filmed nude sex scenes in Blue Lagoon. She later testified before Congress that some of her scenes used a body double. Some of her scenes! At 15, she filmed yet more sex scenes in Endless Love. Whew. Guess Kim's sex tape isn't looking so scandalous now, does it?
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Teri certainly took her share of criticism throughout all this. But I think it would actually be worse today. Teri was criticized but at least Brooke's films were considered art, unlike the Kardashians' various reality shows.
It's hard to judge Teri. On the one hand, Brooke was incredibly young to be so sexualized. On the other, Brooke was an exquisitely beautiful and mature child, and Teri saw an opportunity to give her an amazing career. Brooke went on to do well in television and on Broadway and has written a bestseller.
In 1995, Brooke fired Teri as her momager. She felt that Teri wasn't taking her seriously enough as a talent and was just trying to "brand" her. I wonder if any of the Kardashian girls ever think the same? Nahh.
I also wonder if a dadager would reap the same criticism. You don't hear much about Jamie Spears "pimping out" Britney or Billy Ray Cyrus "pimping out" Miley, even though those two stars have done highly sexualized material in their teens. Then again, it's hard to beat letting your 11-year-old star as a child prostitute!
That said, Teri will go down in history as one of the most successful momagers of all time. And her daughter, Brooke, has had a career that has lasted longer than I'm betting the careers of the Kardashian clan will.
Who was more of a momager? Kris or Teri?
Image via Columbia Pictures