“I Know My Kid’s a Star,” VH1’s new reality show, pits parent-child teams against each other for a chance at $50,000, which the kid will doubtlessly need to use for future therapy.

The competitors include dancers, singers and musicians, all of whom are pretty uncomfortable to watch. The parents also compete in contests that expose their knowledge of the entertainment industry, and at the end of the episode host Danny Bonaduce sends one team home.

With overbearing parents trying to live through their children in a pathetically vicarious way, this show isn’t so much a competition as an hour-long look at a kid’s atrophying self-esteem. Social Services should be watching this show.

“Star” contains a few funny elements, like the crazy mother/Steven-Tyler-doppelganger and the out-of-tune recital of an 8-year-old wearing a pink wig, but it doesn’t matter how funny the show is, because for every amusing moment “Star” provides, there are five moments of borderline child abuse. VH1 should use the show as a parenting boot camp for these wackos.

1-1/2 Stars

“I Know My Kid’s a Star”

Thursdays at 10 p.m.


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