Opinion Brief

Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston: Engaged... again?

Reportedly, the bombshell news that the infamous teen couple is reuniting took even Sarah Palin by surprise. Here's what commentators have to say

In one of the "most unlikely reunions" of the year, Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston have informed US Weekly that they're engaged again. (Watch an ABC report about the reconciliation.) Apparently, the couple reached the decision while in custody talks regarding their 18-month-old son, Tripp. "I really thought we were over," Bristol Palin tells the tabloid, but "I [started] thinking how different he was." The news came as a surprise this morning to "mama grizzly" Sarah Palin, whom the couple hadn't briefed. ("It's intimidating and scary just to think about what her reaction is going to be," Bristol admitted to Us). Judging by a statement Sarah Palin released to the "Today" show, her official reaction is benign if a bit incredulous: "Bristol believes in redemption and forgiveness to a degree most of us struggle to put in practice in our daily lives." Here, a roundup of media commentary:

"This Thanksgiving is going to be awkward," says Jessica Wakeman at The Frisky. Especially considering how Levi "trashed... Sarah Palin at every opportunity." But it's probably a good move for Bristol: "I couldn't do an abstinence pledge either."

Now the pieces fit, says Gina Serpe at E! Online. "Suddenly, [Levi's] out-of-nowhere apology" to the Palin clan "makes much more sense." But I see rough waters ahead for the couple: "The fact that the kids told the tabloid press before breaking the news to mama" certainly won't help this pill go down any smoother.

File this under "anything is possible," right along with Alvin Greene's Democratic Senate primary win, says Ken Rudin at NPR. Bristol should be wary of her mother's wrath: Doesn't she know about "hockey moms and pit bulls?"

What a heartwarming tale of modern romance, says TMZ. "He knocks her up when she's 17, she has a kid, they break up, they attack each other in the media, he poses for Playgirl, they attack each other in the media again," and then they live happily ever after.

Good luck, Levi: "Johnston may have a tough time making himself welcome in the Palin family," says the Politics Daily staff. After all, he called Sarah Palin's Downs-Syndrome-afflicted son Trig "retarded." Chances are, Sarah Palin won't take kindly to welcoming the young man she once dubbed "Ricky Hollywood" back into the fold.

It's a match made in media heaven, say Roxanne Roberts and Amy Argetsinger at The Washington Post. Despite the "ocean of bad blood" between the two families, "at this point" neither of them could ever be with anyone else. Having shared a "completely unique experience" as "small town teens catapulted to worldwide fame by the convergence of an unplanned pregnancy and [Sarah Palin's] overnight political ascendance," only they can understand each other. "This is why people fall in love."

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