Two years ago, ditzy dreamer Marissa threw the most over-the-top My Super Sweet 16 party Scottsdale, Ariz., had ever seen. She took her obsession with the color pink to a whole new level by dying her dogs, and she got everything she could ever ask...... Read Full Episode Summary »
Marissa's getting sent to live with a tribe in the Ugali Hills of India. In order to survive in a culture known for it's no-nonsense work regimen, Marissa's work ethic must undergo a complete 360.
Two years ago, ditzy dreamer Marissa threw the most over-the-top My Super Sweet 16 party Scottsdale, Ariz., had ever seen. She took her obsession with the color pink to a whole new level by dying her dogs, and she got everything she could ever ask for from her parents, including two brand-new cars!
Yes, all her dreams came true, but Marissa couldn't make a single decision by herself. She needed help with everything. And guess what? This 18-year-old still relies on mommy and daddy on a regular basis. She has never done laundry or cooked a meal and she needs help doing even the most basic things, like changing a light bulb. Clearly, she has no idea how to survive on her own.
Marissa's mother admits that she's coddled her daughter, and now she's afraid Marissa will be taken advantage of in the real world. It's time to cut the cord and lay down the law, so mom is taking drastic measures: Marissa is being Exiled to the remote hills of India in hopes that she'll finally learn how to stand on her own two feet.
Returning home after band practice one day, Marissa learns of her fate. Her parents tell her that they don't think she's equipped to be on her own and they want to toughen her up. She is told that where she is going, children do most of the work and take care of their parents -- so a lot will be expected of her.
In her room, Marissa needs help packing. With mom by her side, she decides to bring several pairs of shoes, including high heels and slippers, and a hair dryer. In India, where working hard is the norm and laziness is not an option, when does she think she'll use this stuff?
Less than 24 hours later, Marissa is whisked away to Kerala, India. Upon arriving in the village of Begur, Marissa meets Pramila, a girl her age that she'll be staying with. As the tribe dances around her, she is greeted with a floral necklace.
When Pramila shows Marissa her room in the family shack, there's a chicken nesting. After moving the unwanted roommate, Marissa must put together her wooden bed, which winds up taking up the whole room. Then, it quickly becomes clear that Marissa doesn't know how to make a bed or use a broom.
The next morning, Pramila tells Marissa to collect cow dung that they will use for cleaning. Wait, what? Yes, the poop is mixed with water and Marissa must mop the floor with the mixture. After getting some of the concoction on her foot, Marissa deems the activity the grossest thing she has ever done.
Then, Marissa must help plant ginger, which the villagers grow and sell. She is handed a rake so that she can churn the dirt and prepare it for planting. She quickly grows tired of the chore and curses her parents for sending her to such a horrible place.
On day four of being Exiled, Marissa notices that the villagers are always working. Do they ever have any fun? To find out, Marissa asks Pramila what she would do if she had no chores, and Pramila says she would collect wood. Marissa admits she would be lounging by the pool. Confused, Pramila asks what a pool is and what kind of clothing she would wear in it. When Marissa shows off her bikini, Pramila can't believe her eyes. In India, a woman would be beaten for wearing such a revealing outfit. The clash of cultures makes Marissa feel even more out of place than ever.
After shaking her head over the skimpy clothes, Pramila makes Marissa go back to work. They go to the well to collect buckets of water, which they must balance on their heads. But while walking back to the village, Marissa spills her bucket, leaving Pramila exasperated.
Later, Marissa helps Pramila cook dinner, but she comes across as totally clueless. After cutting her finger while chopping onions, Marissa starts crying because she feels embarrassed that she doesn't have basic life skills.
The next day, Marissa vows to prove to Pramila that she isn't as useless as she seems. Marissa decides to cook macaroni and cheese for Pramila's family. But the meal doesn't come in a box here, so she must venture to the outdoor market to get fresh ingredients. She has a hard time finding everything she needs and wonders if she can make a good meal with slices of cheese.
After struggling with cooking over a fire with simple tools, Marissa serves up a special meal for her host family. Everyone looks confused by their first American meal, but Pramila's brother ends up loving it.
That night, Pramila shows Marissa where she likes to hang out -- a treehouse high above the village. In there, Marissa shows Pramila pictures from back home and the two girls bond.
On Marissa's last day in India, the tribe holds a special ceremony where she receives her very own tribal dress. It's a teary departure for Marissa, but she is more than happy to see her family and friends back home. After being Exiled, Marissa knows she's capable of so much more than she ever imagined. She feels like she can take on the world. But first things first ... an easily acquired drink of water in her luxurious kitchen!