Bristol Palin Defends Mom During Reality Show Premiere

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(Photo credit: CNN)

By Ashley Killough, CNN

(CNN) — One episode in, Bristol Palin is already delivering the drama.

In her new reality television series, which premiered Tuesday night, the 21-year-old daughter of Sarah Palin found herself in a heated brawl at a Los Angeles bar as she defended her mom against verbal attacks.

The Lifetime program, “Life’s a Tripp,” follows Bristol as she works as a summer volunteer in L.A. and takes care of her three-year-old son, Tripp.

Bristol, however, is no stranger to TV crews. Her family was the focus of a TLC program, “Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” and Bristol herself participated in the popular series, “Dancing with the Stars,” in which she finished third place.

This time, the new hour-long program places the spotlight entirely on Bristol, who rose to instant fame in 2008 when her mom was tapped as Sen. John McCain’s running mate and her family revealed that Bristol, then 17-years-old, was pregnant.

In Tuesday’s debut episode, Bristol moves into her friend’s L.A. home – in which Bristol takes special note of the numerous bidets – and goes out with a couple of friends to a Western-themed bar.

Drama begins to unfold, however, when her friends convince her to ride a mechanical bull and a man from the crowd shouts out a lewd remark.

“Did you ride Levi like that?” he yelled, referring the father of Bristol’s child, Levi Johnston. “Your mother’s a whore.”

As a fuming Bristol storms over to the man, cameras and lights in tow, she mutters under her breath, “Watch this.” She confronts the individual, who appears to have had a few too many drinks, and asks why he made the comments.

The man continues to throw jabs, calling Bristol’s mother “the devil” and accusing her of being unable to speak in a “complete sentence.”

Bristol, meanwhile, demands a concrete example to back up his claims, at one point asking if he was mad because he was a “homosexual.”

“Pretty much,” he responds.

The scrum escalates into a profanity match – mostly driven by the man and his friend – and Bristol’s group is quickly escorted out of the bar.

Emotionally distraught, Bristol then calls her best friend, Gino, back in Alaska and tearfully retells the incident. She admits she wants to go home.

While strolling in the grocery store the following day with her sister, however, Bristol acknowledges that she’s “over it,” despite the fact that video from the tiff had already spread on YouTube.

The rest of the episode follows along as Bristol adjusts to Los Angeles and starts her first day of volunteer work with the group, “Help the Children.” She also takes the time to have brunch with Mark Ballas, her dancing partner in “Dancing with the Stars.”

During their meal, Ballas asks about Bristol’s mom and reveals that Sarah occasionally sends him text messages.

“She’s so sweet,” he adds.

But the episode ends with Bristol again growing distressed when her sister Willow, who seems bored out of her mind, decides to go back to Alaska.

While trying to convince her to stay, Bristol makes the case that she’ll have a hard time finding someone else to take care of her toddler son if Willow leaves.

“Our own friends sell stories about us,” Bristol says. “You think some random babysitter’s not?”

Ultimately, Willow flies back home.

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