You identified with her Olive Garden obsession in The Girls Next Door.
You did her On Demand ab workouts.
You were there every step of the way as she planned her wedding in Kendra.
Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett has dominated reality television since 2005. And she’s still got more to give. Kendra On Top will return for season two on WEtv this Friday, Sept. 13.
The move from the show Kendra on E! to Kendra On Top on WEtv gave Wilkinson-Baskett the chance to rebrand herself. “Our goal was to reintroduce Kendra again, in a different light,” she says. “Season one was about finding a career, being a parent, being a wife — kind of reintroducing me under another network, and reminding people who I am.”
But season two will dive right in. “My audience understands where I’m at now; we’re pretty much up to date with everything,” Wilkinson-Baskett says. “This season is not about me being a parent or about me being married. It’s about being a human being, the struggles of what that means, and how I get through it.”
According to Wilkinson-Baskett, those struggles are real. “This is the most organic show you can get,” she says. “Sure, we have creative little tie-ins. But the overall story is 100 percent my life. I would never tell someone else’s story or have anybody else’s words in my mouth. It’s pure Kendra.”
Why such a strong commitment to the reality of reality TV? “I find it very therapeutic to be able to tell my story, and not hide it,” she says. “We’ve been shooting season two of Kendra On Top for about a year now. There’s a lot that goes on in a year. Everybody goes through spurts. There are some people who hide those spurts and blow up later. But I’m an open book.”
What are some of those “spurts” for Kendra? As husband Hank Baskett develops his career at his gym Athletic Gaines, tensions run high. “There’s an episode where you’ll get a chance to see what happens when his business mixes with my business, and it ends up not being such a great thing,” she says. “It ends up being a complete disaster. You’ll get a chance to see how we get through it, together. It’s something a lot of people in Hollywood have to go through, a lot of people in the world have to go through.”
Despite their professional differences, Wilkinson-Baskett remains supportive of her hubby's career. “The gym is really the most amazing place ever, “ she says. “They’re specialized in personal training and making sure you get to your goal safely and fast.” Although she is regarded as a fitness guru, she says her involvement in the gym does not extend beyond support.
But his pride for Hank is trumped by pride for little Hank. “We’re very lucky to have a son like him,” she says. “It’s natural to compare yourself with other parents, and I find myself patting myself on the back. We are creating an amazing human being!”
Wilkinson-Baskett admits to a precarious relationship between parenting life and her televised life. “We’re respectable people,” she says. “We have a lot of parenting friends from preschool, and we have to warn them to be aware of what they see. This is a crazy season, a little dramatic. You know how they say behind closed doors, people are a certain way? Behind closed doors for us is actually on TV. People are seeing our true dirt.”
Viewers will get to see behind those closed doors this Friday at 10 p.m.