Season 17 of Sister Wives features Kody Brown in a way fans have never seen before. Some viewers are shocked at how the reality star is being presented on the newest season of his family’s TLC series. They appear concerned over how little time he appears to invest in some of his children. Several went as far as to say call Kody Brown has never been a “great father” after claiming his demeanor “changed” toward his offspring over the past several seasons of his family’s reality television series.
‘Sister Wives’ presented Kody Brown as a father involved in the day-to-day lives of some of his children
Throughout 16 seasons of Sister Wives, Brown seemed to take great interest in the lives of all his children from his four wives: Meri, Janelle, Robyn, and Christine Brown. He is a father of 18 children: 15 natural and three adopted.
In fact, during a 2015 tell-all, all four of Brown’s wives were unanimous in the idea that he was a good father after being questioned by the special’s host, Tamron Hall. He took great pride as several of his adult children tied the knot and even presided over daughter Maddie’s wedding to Caleb Brush in 2016.
Today, Sister Wives presents Brown as a hands-off father to his offspring. Fans noted how he reacted to daughter Ysabel’s decision to move forward with spinal surgery in September of 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Kody made it clear he would not break quarantine with legal wife Robyn Brown to fly to New Jersey for Ysabel’s procedure. He also suggested his daughter go through her surgery experience alone.
However, viewers pointed out Brown is still quite involved in the day-to-day parenting of Robyn’s children, including her adult offspring, who still live at home. This was captured during season 16 of the series, as he was quarantined with her family full-time.
Some ‘Sister Wives’ viewers claim Kody Brown has never been a ‘great father’ after season 16
In a Reddit thread, some Sister Wives fans took Brown to task over how he’s portrayed in season 16.
The original poster wrote of season 16, “I can’t believe the changes in Kody, in terms of how he relates to and treats his kids. I think he used to be someone who cared about his kids. This past season was like watching an entirely different person.”
“Kody’s never been a ‘great’ father. He likes kids when they’re small and gives him lots of attention. But he puts in hardly any effort to get to know his kids as they get older,” a second fan responded. “Kody wants his kids, like his wives, to follow and love him blindly. But hasn’t bothered putting in any effort for them to trust him truly.”
“I’ve been watching the old seasons, too (I’m where their Vegas houses just got done being built). It’s crazy how different the whole family dynamic was. He’s so cold now, not only toward his kids but the wives too. It makes me sad,” shared a third Reddit user.
Fans also discussed a heartbreaking moment during season 16 when Janelle’s sons Gabriel and Garrison tried to speak with their father. However, the discussion between father and sons turned into a hotheaded debate.
Other fans believe Robyn Brown has something to do with Kody’s personality change
Other Sister Wives viewers had differing opinions on Brown’s overall personality change as the series heads into season 17.
One wrote that the “bigger change” was how he presented himself as a “family man” to the clan, to changing into a father who only tried to “parent Robyn’s kids. They added, “He abandoned the rest. Before this, he made it seem like he wanted to look like a good dad to ALL the kids.”
“Robyn has done a good job of keeping her kids docile and doe-eyed toward him. He eats it up and favors them because they all play to his fantasy of being the big strong protector and patriarch without actually having to do the work of a protector or patriarch,” claimed another fan.
Another viewer recalled Janelle once said, “Kody’s kids are the true loves of his life.” They noted that perhaps that was a fact when Brown was married to just Meri, Christine, and Janelle. “Things changed when he married Robyn,” the viewer wrote. “It’s been crazy to observe his personality and goofy dad-ness fade away the longer he’s with her!” noted a TLC viewer.
Season 17 of Sister Wives debuts Sunday at 10 p.m. EST on TLC.