Today's Evil Beet Gossip

TV Land Awards: The Untold Story


I swear I have some sort of celebrity gossip ADD.  When I sit down to write about the latest happenings in Hollywood, I get completely distracted by irrelevant details.  It’s possible that I feel weary of the same old “Lindsay is back on the pole,” stories.  I’m just so much more interested in the story behind the story.  Or the story that’s happening over to the left when everyone is turned to watch the story on the right.

An example:  This morning I was sipping on a protein shake, and no-that’s not a euphemism, and scanning the pics of last night’s TV Land awards red carpet arrivals.  And seriously, I’m filing a motion for that gig to be renamed the TV Land Where Are They Now? awards because most of the attendees haven’t seen the lens side of a studio camera in the past decade.  But I’m into retro and therefore don’t mind seeing the entire pop culture element of my childhood assembled in one amphitheater.

Anyway…I was going through the pictures and came across one of Taran Noah Smith.  Does anyone remember him?  He was the youngest kid on Home Improvement.  Now, I didn’t watch that show too often but what struck me today is that he has the aforementioned crazy eyes.  So, I started Googling things like, “Why does Taran Noah Smith have crazy eyes?” and “Was there some sort of ‘three name requirement’ for the kids of Home Improvement?” and wasn’t having a lot of success in finding out why he looks like a genuine Britney Spears stalker.  But by slightly adjusting my search parameters, I uncovered a story about this kid.  I knew he had a story.

Back in 2001 when he was seventeen, Smith married a thirty-three-year-old chick named Heidi.  After accusing his parents of stealing from him and suing for control of his $1.5M trust fund, the May-December couple moved to Kansas and started manufacturing cheese made from cashews.  They called it Playfood and no I’m not kidding.

When that didn’t work out, they moved back to California and started illegally running a catering business and restaurant out of their home.  The neighbors revolted and they shut down their home-based business and opened up a legitimate vegan restaurant in Studio City named Playfood, of course.

While all this vegan crap was happening, they also had an open marriage.  Taran told the National Enquirer that his wife was more interested in chicks until she found out that he was dating someone steady.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:  Dating can really cause problems in a marriage.  I highly recommend clandestine affairs instead.

As shocking as it is to believe, the marriage dissolved when Smith felt his wife was funnelling money out of their business for her own use.  After two years of protracted legal battle, he won and gets to hold on to the Playfood empire.  Their eight-year marriage was annulled just recently-April 2nd of this year.  How do you get an annulment after you’ve manufactured non-dairy cheese with someone?  That just doesn’t seem right.

Taran has reconciled with his folks even though he’ll probably have to hear, “I told you so,” for the rest of his days of obscurity.

Most people won’t know this story because quite honestly no one cares about Taran Noah Smith.  Except me.  I do.  So, I’m sorry for abusing you with this tale but it further speaks to the benefits of not letting your kid loose in Hollywood.  Before you know it, they go vegan and break your heart.

Okay, now for the event you may actually care about.  There were tons of has-beens there such as :  David Faustino, Katey Sagal, Ted McGinley, Loretta Swit, Mike Farrell, Conchata Farrell, Joan Van Ark, Kathy Garver, Patricia Richardson, and basically everyone who ever had a role on ER.

24 CommentsLeave a comment

  • Made me morning Wendie! I care Wendie, I care. If we don’t who will?

    I knew about most of it from the E! True Hollywood Story, or Where Are They Now?, something along those lines. But I didn’t know about the open marriage or his recent annulment, just the Playfood stuff and big age difference.

    Has JTT come out of the closet yet? I mean I love my poster of him from the Home Improvement years, but I came to terms a while ago that he won’t be having one of me anytime soon.

    • Ok, just realized JTT was the only no-show of the Home Improvement clan! What is up with that? Embrace your roots Jonathan, it’s not like they are going to be doing any ‘Tom & Huck’ reunions anytime soon.

  • omggg wendie that story was sooo long lol… well it was long for the internet and my eyes want to fall out of my head now, but I read it all because I WUVVVVV youu!

    I used to love watching home improvement- I mean I thought it was a stupid show but I was ‘so in love’ with Jonathan Taylor Thomas… or JTT as I often called him- I totally ignored his other brothers- (especially the older one… for some reason his mullet always bothered me…( but yeah the more I look at this photo the more I am creeped out by his eyes… they are like blocks of frozen blue kool-aid. like why does he not have pupils?

    and cashew cheese? are you shittin’ me?

    • I too am having trouble finding pupils in there. Those might not be eyes. Those might be marbles. Maybe the grand finale of his marriage was a knock down drag out in which his eyes were gouged out?

      Alternately, maybe that “home catering business” was a meth lab? Cashew cheese might be just as stinky to produce. Perhaps it was a front.

      • Maybe the wife got the pupils in the divorce. But check out the other brother in these photos. Also a mysterious lack of pupils. Scary.

  • How is Katey Sagal a has been? She’s not only the voice on Futureama, she stars in Sons of Anarchy which will return this fall. Research! Research! Research! BTW, you could have posted a link to the winners….

    BTW, Home Improvement was one of the best shows ever. It’s disgraceful when parents of child stars steal their money.

  • Wendie, I care waaaay more about the youngest bro on Home Improvement making cashew cheese then I do about what dress anyone is waering! Thanks!

  • Totally agreeing with Veronica. Katey Sagal isn’t a has been, she’s doing excellent work on Sons of Anarchy.

  • This kid was too cute when he was young. I knew something would happen to him. Those eyes are just plain scary!

    Conchetta Ferrell isn’t a has-been. She’s on ‘Two and a Half Men” which is one of the top rated shows on TV!!!! Same thing with Kate Segal. She’s on “Sons of Anarchy.”

  • Funny I was just watchin an old episode of Home Improvement last night and wondering what in the hell ever happened to those boys! Thanks for the timely post, Wendie. I also saw a show on E! that involved him and did you know that several years ago he put a house up for sale and it was a total nasty, wreck! Bugs and food everywhere, feces….. wall with holes in them, furniture destroyed, crazy, creepy phrases and poems written all over the walls….. yeah this kid is off his rocker!

    But really…. I’m more interested to know what ever happened to Jonathan Taylor Thomas? Any news on him?

  • Love the blog, love the article (he is weirdly blue-eyed), but don’t knock veganism! Whether idealistically or for people who have a lot of food allergies, it’s a really healthy choice that people knock without knowing a lot about.

  • How funny to see Taran on your site – I was friends with him a few years ago and hung out with him and his then wife quite a few times. Their house was awesome by the way – every room decorated by a different artist. Heidi actually did sort of proposition me once, it was awkward. Anyway, Taran is a great kid and a really sweet guy who deserves to move on from the mess that was his and Heidi’s relationship. I really wish him the best. If only cuz his eyes are much less crazy in real life, ha ha.

  • I was at 6 Flags Great America (in CA) back in 1999 and ran into him. He was with some older women. He was really ugly in person, he wore all black like on the show, but his face was COVERED in pimples. I was so shocked at how well tv made him look LOL

    But yeah, my brother ended up playing laser tag with him (right place at right time) and whoever the lady was had a conversation with me and my mom, she said he didn’t like all the attention.

    They’re both really sweet though.

  • So Wendie,
    I live in DC and I was hanging out at one of my favorite bookstores doing that whole,’ yeah I’m totally doing work while stalking nerdy hot DC boys and reading Evil Beet’. In walks in Crazy Eyes, Daryl Hannah and some other obscure former ‘celebrities’. Wowzas it was weird. They were having nonsensical existential conversation and they were filming each other…it was so very strange. I had no idea who Crazy Eyes was, he looked familiar but thank you for stalking him and making us read his story.