04.25.2012...Justin Blog

25 April 2012

  • If you’re a reality TV watcher like I am (I’m not proud, I admit), you’ve probably noticed the high proliferation of programming centered around the word “wife.” I blame (and by blame, I really mean “thank”) Bravo for kicking off this trend with their “Real Housewives,” series, which, fittingly enough, is the crown jewel in my reality TV lineup. 

    If you’re not watching any of the “Real Housewives” 
    franchises, you’re really missing out. I don’t care who you are, we all love a little mindless entertainment from time to time, and RH perfectly fits the bill. With six current installments airing in America (with such glitzy locales as Atlanta and Beverly Hills) and at least two international installments, including Vancouver airing exclusively for Canadian residents, you’re sure to find one that suits your tastes. My preferred locales? Orange County (the mama location that started it all), New York City, and of course, Beverly Hills. 

    One prop I have to give the ladies of RH is that the majority of them actually are married, or at least they were when they began filming. Such is not the case for “Basketball Wives,” which really should be re-titled “Basketball Groupies,” or more politically incorrectly, “Ghetto Girls.” You’ve noticed this too, right? I don’t know what can be said for a group of single women in their 30’s and 40’s who live to brawl, but VH1’s cameras are there to capture every moment. If you prefer your cast to possess some modicum of class, this isn’t the show for you. However, if it’s a glammed-up version of Jerry Springer you’re craving, “Basketball Wives” is worth a look.

    Then there’s the mob wives of the aptly-titled, “Mob Wives.” Unlike the “Basketball Wives,” a handful of these women are indeed wearing a ring, but they’re not pretending to be classy. Instead, viewers are given an unvarnished look at the daily struggles mafia wives face while their husbands are serving time. While over-the-top at times, these aren’t scripted storylines, as evidenced by the headline-making incident that one cast member’s husband generated by striking a deal with authorities and turning in his own wife’s father. 

    However you slice it, housewives are definitely having a moment in pop culture, and unlike Donna Reed, these women aren’t content to be caught vacuuming in pearls.

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