Why are we so fascinated with Bravo’s “Real Housewives” franchise? That easy enough to answer, it all comes down to the three B’s and one big D – Bitching, Bickering, Backstabbing and a huge dose of Drama!
When you stop to think about it, as gay men – isn’t there a little bit of “Housewives” blood coursing through our veins? Maybe, not the best analogy if you are comparing yourself to “New Jersey’s” Danielle Staub, she probably has a reserved spot at the free clinic.
Anyhoo, I bet there is just a tiny part of you that wishes you could be one of them – and if you’re not well endowed, then my apologies. Seriously, though – who wouldn’t want to flip over a table to punctuate your disdain for someone who has fallen out of favor in your inner circle (I’m tawkin’ to you and your “bubbies,” “Jersey” girl Teresa Guidice)?
Yes, a few questions have been posed about our love of voyeuristically glimpsing into the lives of these women we “know” on a first name basis.
Not to digress, but, it’s me…I cannot decide which pose I would strike, should I ever be included into this ladies-only enclave. I could see myself flipping my hair out of my eye, while seductively eating a Big Stick Popsicle. Or staying focused…talk about a concept!
But getting back to the answers …there are pros and cons (Nope, not referring to your shady past, Danielle) to being in the glare of the TV spotlight.
Let’s examine the phenomenon that has launched four incarnations (and an upcoming fifth installment to be set in Washington, D.C.), the aforementioned upside/downside of being “Real,” and the goods on the shows returning soon as regularly scheduled programs.
The ladies of “Atlanta” have been busy as, ahem, beavers this season with their entrepreneur endeavors. This is exhibit A in why it would be a good move to emulate those on the show.
Sure, you can be like Kim Zolciak and have Kandi Burruss make a follow-up to “Tardy for the Party”; even if your vocal chops should be served with a side dish of earplugs.
But, there are other ways to capitalize on your crossover television fame!
You can start a wig line (that Kim is one busy gal!), just be sure they aren’t sold exclusively around Halloween.
Maybe you’re handy with a needle and thread? Then you can follow in castmate Sheree Whitfield’s fashion footsteps. Hey, it worked for co-star Lisa Wu Hartwell and her “Closet Freak” couture. Ooh, somebody drank his Snapple today!
Were you also surprised that Sheree’s designs weren’t a collection of equestrian-themed clothing? She’s a little horsy lookin’ is all. But, her “She By Sheree” designs recently made their debut at New York Fashion Week. The lesson there? Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth!
Perhaps a ghostwriter can help you pen a bestselling tell-all book like NeNe Leakes.
And, therein lies the problem…ole NeNe not only revealed that she was once a stripper named Silk; she also accused Kim of working as one named Barbie – is that because she appears to be made out of plastic? Why, that’s akin to a drive-by fruiting, dearie, and not so peachy there, NeNe! Stay on your own sidewalk…or stripper pole!
Speaking of fruit…do you find self-proclaimed “unofficial sixth Housewife” Dwight Eubanks super annoying? Who appointed him to that post? Oh wait, he did!
New addition Kandi quickly became my favorite person on the show, because she puts the “Real” in the title and tells it like it is. And my heart goes out to her for the recent loss of ex-fiancé Ashley Jewell. See, I have one!
Just remember, if you are tapped to critique red carpet arrivals, like NeNe was for the Emmys, please know the difference between “stylish knots” and shoulder pads. Nobody wants to get on Jay Manuel’s bad side – does he have a good one? With all that gray hair it’s hard to tell. Plus, if you ever get on Ellen DeGeneres (The talk show, not her person! No means no!) a “no comment” might suffice rather than a “Don’t cross the line, bitch!” if you have been in a wig-pulling incident and want to appear “classy.”
For every second of fame that you might accrue, you do run the risk of having personal information being divulged about you, and no edition highlighted this better than “Jersey.”
Faster than you can say, “I was young and needed the money,” just bear in mind that while Danielle has said that she doesn’t regret her time on the show – she probably didn’t figure the out-of-print book Cop Without A Badge would make her the Salman Rushdie of her series!
Still, it gave the show that added zip – yeah, like having paprika thrown into your eyeballs – because Teresa’s attempts to get her daughter Gia acting work made me feel skeevy, like I was watching “Toddlers & Tiaras”… in a trench coat.
And, I was even more confused that I might be viewing another show, say, “Jerry Springer” with sisters Caroline and Dina Manzo married to brothers Albert and Tommy Manzo, and Jacqueline Laurita being sister-in-law to all of them. That “confusion” might happen on “The Real Housewives of Arkansas,” but their relationships were all above board…I think.
My only complaint was that the season was shorter than Gary Coleman in a ditch (Hey! That’s where your career fell into!), and the unseen footage specials weren’t really that.
How come “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” don’t hold fruit like their counterparts when the show cuts to commercials? Maybe they could handle a dead fish wrapped in a newspaper…on second thought, no need to add speculation to Caroline’s “family business.”
And now the show has been given a second season to air in 2010, so there’s time to rectify that slight.
New York City
Filming recently began on the third season, and if you are not one who likes to be gossiped about, then you would need to Escape From New York! Yeah, I just kicked it Kurt Russell old school – so what?
It’s that kind of blasé attitude that would help you circumvent the constant chatter about your every move. Because the rumor mill has been working itself into a tizzy before we’ve even had a chance to catch up with the ladies on-screen! But, in the plus category, if you are an attention whore – this would be right up your proverbial alley!
First, it was alleged that the cast (Bethenny Frankel, Jill Zarin, Kelly Killoren Bensimon, Ramona Singer, Alex McCord and Countess Luann De Lesseps) began shooting the season amid contract negotiations! I think if you have “Countess” in your name, you should be able to do the work for free.
Then, it was speculated that Bethenny was feuding with her castmates on-set, being excluded from a dinner party and having a public argument during a New York Fashion Week show – I bet she was with me on Sheree’s garments surprisingly not being for the Mr. Ed set!
Then Alex said, “We’ve been in production for less than a month and already the drama is off the charts!”
Following that was the supposed replacing of Bethenny by socialite Sonja Morgan mid-season and the former’s Twitter response that we as viewers are “stuck” with her, while Bravo then confirmed that she had been given a spin-off series.
But, two new castmates were added to “NYC” after that! And wouldn’t you know it one of them is Sonja Morgan! The other is a successful entrepreneur named Jennifer Gilbert. Phew! I’m exhausted! Wonder how Bethenny is holdin’ up?
And, you know us gays, we’re not ones to gossip…so you didn’t hear that from me!
If you are one for originality, then you would want to make “Orange County” your home, since it was the first “Housewives” franchise and there is that whole freshly squeezed connotation to it.
Besides, The Rage Monthly will be featured in the first three episodes that begin on November 5. So, my dream of being in the cast inside too far off!
It looks like Jeana Keough will be saying buh bye to the show and modern-day ’50s-type homemaker Alexis Bellino will say hullo during season five. If she utters the line, “I’ll just die if I don’t get this recipe,” someone might have to remind her she lives in The O.C. and not Stepford.
Are you one who doesn’t want to give up your opulent lifestyle because of a little ole global recession? Then you definitely want to hang with Tamra Barney, Lynne Curtin, Vicki Gunvalson and Gretchen Rossi. Rather hang onto would be the key words, as the ladies attempt to do just that in relation to their extravgant lifestyles.
And with shopping, dancing, dining, drinking, plastic surgery and working out being their main priorities, I just hope gay men will continue to find them relatable. Yeah, right.
Are You For “Real?”
Did you figure out if you are made out of the stuff that makes a true “Housewife?” No, I don’t mean silicone! I guess it simply boils down to what the theme song from “The Facts of Life” taught us – you take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have…“The Real Housewives!”
Besides, now we gays do have a shot at “Housewives”-type stardom with LOGO recently announcing that they were doing a similar-in-tone show called “Kept.” Doesn’t that seem repetitive as “Real Housewives” has plenty of gay curb appeal as it is?
I think Bethenny Frankel best summarized that very draw in a recent interview, where she equated being on the show to attending high school. Isn’t that what being gay can seem like as times? Figuring what clique you belong to within the community and such. Wow, that was deep! So, swimming over to the shallow end of the pool – I’ll say we like it because we can’t resist a good catfight and bitchy barbs on a weekly basis.