Fans of the MTV megahit "Teen Mom" were saddened last week when the network announced that the upcoming season would be the show’s last. Viewers first met the show’s stars -- Maci Bookout, Farrah Abraham, Amber Portwood and Catelynn Lowell -- back in 2009 during the first season of the MTV docuseries "16 & Pregnant" and have watched their lives unfold through breakups, baby milestones, engagements and even trouble with the law.
While some will miss the popular spinoff, others feel "Teen Mom" has run its course and it’s time for the young women to experience life — without the MTV paycheck.
“I am thrilled,” Shawn Portwood, the brother of troubled "Teen Mom" star Amber, told TODAY.com. “I do not believe that the show should have survived more than a year or two at the most. I am happy that (the stars) actually have to pursue their lives now.”
Amber has seen her share of legal woes lately, all stemming back to an arrest in 2010 for an incident that was shown on "Teen Mom" in which Amber got physically violent with her baby’s father, Gary Shirley. She was arrested a few weeks after the episode aired and has been in trouble with the law ever since. She recently spent nearly two months in jail and is currently out on probation and participating in an outpatient rehab program.
According to her brother, Amber hasn’t had much time to reflect on the end of the show, despite the fact that she will lose her only income when it does finally go off air.
“She has been so busy doing other things,” Sean told us. “Amber has been getting up every day at 6 a.m. to go to the courthouse and submit drug screens and everything else. Amber physically has no time to worry about MTV.”
Shawn added that he is excited to see the girls have to grow up and live the normal life of a young parent who doesn’t have an MTV paycheck to rely on to pay their bills.
Viewers of the show have watched as the young moms have rented homes, purchased new cars and even gotten plastic surgery procedures despite the fact that very few of them have a "real" job. With the MTV paychecks coming to an end, the ladies will either have to return to normal life or use their "Teen Mom" fame to help them stay in the spotlight.
“I am sure they will try to milk the television scene as much as possible,” Shawn said. “(Amber) is ready for a 9-to-5 (job) and hopefully she can get a little extra money on the side doing other things. It is time to get Amber out of the spotlight, which is what she has been trying to do since she has been out (of jail).”
The fourth and final season of "Teen Mom" will begin airing this summer. MTV has yet to comment on the fate of the franchise’s other shows, "Teen Mom 2" and "16 & Pregnant." However, last month the network released a statement confirming that it will be launching "Teen Mom 3" with girls from the upcoming season of "16 & Pregnant."
While the new girls seem promising, it will be hard for the new batch to surpass the drama factor that the original bunch have brought to the show. Loyal fans will miss Amber and Gary’s constant breakups, the drama between Maci and her baby-daddy Ryan, the strength of adoption advocates Catelynn and Tyler, and, of course, Farrah’s often-mocked “cry face,” which has made it into nearly every episode of the show.
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