Thursday, September 26, 2013

Dear Bravo, Dear Viewer: Season Five and How Teresa Can Save her ass in Court.

Season 5 of The Real Housewives of New Jersey?  It sucked. It's FAKE. FAKE FAKE FAKE FAKE FAKE. And yet I hate-watched every episode, and will watch the stupid 90 minute finale. (what the hell is wrong with me? Even Bravo Andy admitted that he skipped the last episode to watch The Emmys with NPH. ).

In case anyone doesn't get this, Google, "frankenbytes"-(how they splice and edit to make characters say anything they want....and the timeline for this season has been so transparently screwed-with, (cast went to Arizona in March  AFTER the stuff in the last few episodes like the "Penny"-crap.

Teresa and Joe in a car-ride saying something like, "When we went to Arizona"----but (supposedly), on the way to this "everyone hates Penny event" that happened in January which we all know because an assault led to Real court charges? UH-no. Just NOT.Changing the events of TIME is not reality in this dimension.

Yeah--so Bravo isn't even TRYING to be "real".

WHY? One of my theories is that Bravo is tired of dealing-with trouble with "the law" for their network and their cast-members? So maybe Bravo has embraced the "we are really fake", to throw off those who would examine things closely? Are they tired of the scrutiny? Other fake reality shows don't get it as bad because other "reality" shows have been more honest about; "yeah-we're not really "reality" so hop off ! ".

In any event-it stinks. All that is left is to look at their ugly mugs, and last year's clothes. Eventually, I predict that reality actors like The Housewives, will receive a class-action settlement. Because they DO improvise many of their lines, and they are not being given writing credit or pay for that.


PART TWO: The Real Stuff

Meanwhile there have been some interesting things going-on for Real Housewives of New Jersey cast members in their real-real lives. Like the indictments on Teresa and Joe Giudice.

1)-There is a reason why certain forms of credit got the name, "liar loans", and that was before anyone ever heard of Teresa & Joe. What I'm about to divulge is really a GIFT to Teresa, and I'm ambivalent about offering credible defense to someone who blew ELEVEN MILLION DOLLARS on HERSELF basically.

Where do you and I get OUR $11,000000? And would we spend it on WORTHLESS designer, expensive CRAP for ourselves? I know that I wouldn't. OK-maybe a little, but the rest of it goes straight to WORLD PEACE! And feeding hungry people. And rescuing cats. (insert your favorite charity here).

Well Teresa, I have news for you, spending all that $$ didn't make you look classy at all. What did redeem Teresa, a little, was her hustle, and her individual style of doing it. She got out there and worked-it! Was it the redemption plot that I personally wanted to see? No. But I can't hold that against them.
I wanted to see them move into the pizza-parlor, and spend within their means-(which were negative eleven million), and deal with THAT. Maybe I should just hang it up and watch Trailer Park Boys on Netflix instead?

OK, so here it is, about Teresa being accused of signing false documents that stated that she was working when SHE WAS NOT WORKING in 2008?

HOLD UP HERE BITCHES. IF Teresa is found GUILTY of this, this affects us ALL. 

As a matter of fact, I personally REFUSED to sign my own TAX-RETURNS in around 2008, because my accountant had ERRONEOUSLY listed MY occupation as, "HOUSEWIFE"! I made him change it to "HOMEMAKER". THAT is the crux of my legal argument here.
Can YOU afford to let the law say that Teresa Didn't WORK?

HOW could Teresa NOT have been WORKING? She was a HOMEMAKER, wasn't she? She was also having babies and taking care of them during the years that she is being accused-of NOT WORKING. (are you guys starting to follow my logic here? I sure HOPE so for HOMEMAKERS everywhere sake).

So, maybe there was a mistake on those W2s that listed, "M.E. Industries", as Teresa's employer? Personally, I call my HOMEMAKING business "My Homemaking company", and deduct and I PAY MYSELF WHAT I'M WORTH accordingly. Its all very correct and very legal and WE DESERVE TO BE PAID FOR OUR WORK DON'T WE?

If you said "no"---stop. Go read "Smelly Melly"-Melissa Gorga's new book which needs to be recalled and SHREDDED! I guess they can't afford a good publicist, because instead-of addressing the BOMBSHELL that was dropped on them by Jezebel about pig,telling people that when a woman says "NO"--to just rape her, instead-of some plausible lie, like someone hacked my book, they are creating new eggs on Twitter to annoy people who complain.-there is no good way to end this post, it all just makes me MAD. Thanks for reading it♥

Monday, March 25, 2013

Married to Medicine:Aspirations to a Divorce from Bravo

I tuned-in to last night's premiere of Bravo's latest reality series, Married to Medicine and about half-way through I remarked that I would rather be homeless than have to live like the women on that show.

Apparently, in Atlanta, if you are a woman, being married to a doctor is like being in the Witness Protection Program and once the ring goes on your finger, your identity is taken away. (complete with plastic surgery physical transformation of course)

The plot revolved around the new-girl, who's name I won't bother to mention, because it really doesn't matter since she has no identity except that-of "doctor's wife". Her cohorts are apparently disturbed because new-girl doesn't know how to act the way that she should they want her to act.

This hazing is supposedly designed to make a proper doctor's wife out of a girl from the ghetto. How being bullied, teased, and interrogated by a bunch of elitist snobby bitches transforms one into their idea of how one should act, I don't know. Clearly they wanted a reaction, and yes, the woman got upset-who wouldn't?
One of them went so far as to proclaim to her face that she would never marry a man who did what new girl's husband did. (he had sent out a group-text message cancelling their wedding).

The gang decides to mentor her and give her more chances to be their victim  step up to the plate, and assume the position that she assumed by saying "I do".
I was still stunned from what I had seen while I was watching Watch What Happens Live, when Andy Cohen mentioned that The New York Times had given Married to Medicine a favorable review.  How could they? A show that is just begging to be condemned in my opinion, and the NYT calls it "entertaining"!

(I just checked that New York Times link and remembered my revulsion at the apparent fashion amongst Married to Medicine's cast. I don't care if it's politically incorrect to talk about someone's looks. If the "look" is a matter of style or fashion, of course I can comment, and those women certainly were not born with mouths that look like giant hemorrhoid-inflamed sphincters. THE EMPEROR HAS NO GODDAMN CLOTHES! and someone needs to tell these girls that rectums on your faces are NOT pretty!)

For a television network that holds itself out to be gay-friendly, Bravo's characterization of heterosexual married women, is absurd. Is it because of this gay-centric perception that they get it so very very WRONG? And no credit is given to Married to Medicine for showcasing two of the women who happen to be doctors themselves, because those women too are given the Bravo-treatment and hobbled with stilts (high-heels), and forced to wear the Bravo uniform, (no slacks allowed, false eyelashes, more makeup than a drag-queen...), just like all of the other "wives" that Bravo presents to us as their idea of what a woman is supposed to be.

Slate gets it right on their blog titled  "Hey Women, If You Really Want to Lean In, Marry a Woman". "Lean in", is the title of's current number one best seller and the recommended way of dealing-with the invisible, unbreakable glass-ceiling.

Here's what Slate says about "leaning in":

"...the elegant solution of professional women refusing to have children until someone fixes this situation has been taken off the table. It's a major conundrum. So why not look to men for answers? Men have managed the sticky situation of both having a job and having a home life for decades now. Their solution is possibly even more elegant in its simplicity than the "don't have children" one: Marry a woman...."
Are they joking or just looking for more options in the never ending quest for women who want to "have it all"? 
Lean In is not so much about "having it all", as it is about equality. Or maybe more about the lack-of equality between the sexes in the business world. But Lean In is not your typical feministic (meaning angry and aggressive) battle cry. No, author and executive big-shot Sheryl Sandberg didn't get to the top of the best-seller list with vinegar-she "leaned"-there.
Sandberg is correct that our country needs to have this conversation. The fact that a book of this topic being so widely received is the proof. But the best advice that she's got is to "lean in"? I'm having a little bit of trouble understanding that. The idea of "leaning-in", in my mind conjures up Little Wayne sipping a little bit of cough medicine and smoking a blunt. OK-maybe Little Wayne leans back, a little too far-but "leaning in" just feels like having a little something and depending which way you lean-it could go either way. And either way, you're dopey.

Dopey, of course being one of the Seven Dwarfs, brings me back to the topic here. Which is/was Married to Medicine-the television show. And the state of women, and how they are portrayed and perceived especially when it comes-to Bravo. Snow White, being the Disney Princess that she is, married the Prince, and lived happily ever after of course. But Snow White had helpers! Seven of them, and also some animated birds and characters.

Bravo has featured homosexual couples of both sexes, Brad Goreski and Jackie Warner-to name two members of that set. Slate responds to Lean In with the suggestion that women who want to achieve career goals should take wives. But the idea that in order to be considered eligible for those top executive positions, without the worry of slipping-down the ladder of success on our children's placenta, and getting caught in the umbilical cord of love that ties us to our family so strongly-The idea, that women need wives, not so much as sexual partners, but partners in the business of life, is an idea that is legally federally prohibited in the USA.

The federal law that states with certainty that women are not equal to men is called the Defense of Marriage Act (link DOMA). There is a vote on this on Wednesday in DC. This is the federal law that permits American men to solicit mail order brides (link) from foreign countries, but denies women the same right. Now maybe you aren't personally interested in a mail order bride, and I'm only interested in the idea enough to know that in the United States of America, as a woman, I am NOT allowed the same civil rights as American men have in this matter.

And maybe THAT is what ticks me off about Bravo, and their idiotic portrayal of women, wives, and Married to Medicine in general. Maybe if there really were equal rights for all people, I could agree with The New York Times about how "entertaining" it is to watch these women makes fools of themselves and their families. And although I am heartened to see that the "conversation" has been validated, the proposed solution, (lean in?), has me more than a little bit worried.

The critical response to Lean In hints at real solutions to the fact of inequality in boardrooms and executive offices. Notions of elitism, and intellectual snobbery, aimed towards the author and allegations of political ambition are made. Bravo sells it's viewers to advertisers as "aspirational". As-in, we "aspire" to what we are seeing unfold before us and therefore products placed in and around the programming, are the things we aspire to buy and/or have.

But what aspirations are they presenting us with? Obscenely expensive crippling  foot devices, disfiguring, painful unnecessary surgery on our bodies and faces, at least two layers of make-up and glued-on/taped-on/painted-on crap on our skin, with any hairy areas being either deleted or burned into whatever position is in style, plus tight-clothing and girdles. And if all of THAT isn't enough, to make it as crystalline clear as the glass ceiling, Married to Medicine, now wants women to ASPIRE to having no identity at all except as the spouse of someone else. I may not ever watch another episode of Married to Medicine, but I'm rooting for the "Ghetto Girl" in all of us to say, OH HELL NO! to what Bravo says about women and our aspirations.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Faking it With the Kardashians

Since the episode with Kim Kardashian finding a stray chihuahua who she called "Princess"-turned out to be scripted, and the story is that the dog that Kim "found", and kept really belonged to an assistant.(not a "stray" as portrayed on "E".)
And the emergency life-saving surgery left the viewers wondering about the cliff-hanger since the dog was never seen again-(full discussion here)
..."The latest episode of Kim Kardashian saving a stray dog was a complete HOAX. I just called the Vet Clinic Kim brought the dog to and they told me the dog is an E News employees pet and the dog is not sick... its ok and well.."-quote from link above
And Reality Tea spotted and documented a great report on another scripted episode :PROOF that Show is Fake...and Staged"-article here

I became a little worried when I heard the sad news that "Mercy", the cat had died.Story link Here/Mercy the cat is dead .

I was wondering how that was going to play-out, or IF it would on Keeping-up With the Kardashians. So I wasn't surprised to see the recent, "Kim is allergic to Dander"-episode, complete with a doctor's office visit and a REALISTIC-LOOKING allergy test.

Hmmmm. I said to myself. Maybe Kim really DID have an allergic-reaction? I don't know if she did or didn't but I did a little research to try and determine IF what we saw in that episode could be faked.

The Daily Mail has an article about the episode with THIS photo of the "allergic reaction"-skin-test on Kim's back (link)

It sure LOOKS like she developed a red-bump doesn't it? But then I did a little MORE research about the allergy skin-test. What I learned, is that YES, a red bump is a good indication of a positive reaction to a substance. BUT, part of the test involves a "control" prick, which is SUPPOSED to REACT! As a matter of fact, IF the "control substance" does NOT react-(in other words if there are NO red-bumps/reactions), then the test is invalid. I enlarged the Daily Mail photo of Kim's back, and it looks to me like what the viewers were told was a reaction to "cat dander"-was the control reaction, since she really does not have any other spots big enough to be "the" "control reaction. (and I'm not even a doctor! Just nosy I guess).

So. IF someone wanted to FAKE a show about someone being allergic to cats, what they COULD do is point to the CONTROL reaction, (which is usually marked with an "X" and set to the side), and say that THAT is a "dander-reaction". Here is an enlarged (modified for you © watchers!) photo of what viewers saw next to a patient who has several reactions and a control reaction marked "X". See below:

I know that I usually don't blog about Keeping Up With the Kardashians, but I DO keep up with them every once in awhile. This week I saw a screaming YELLOW! tabloid headline about KIM having a 22 million Dollar Baby! or some such nonsense-it was a great cover and really caught my eye! The story attached to that has crazy rumors about secret IVF treatments etc...And of course we ALL know that Kim's estranged husband allegedly wants to tell the world that the show (and the marriage), is F-A-K-E, but I'm not posting this as a "hate"-blog.

I can't help but appreciate the Kardashians for the eye-candy that they bring to the E Network, and I ♥ Rob Kardashian's Aurthur George socks-(available exclusively at Neiman Marcus). But documentation of how scripted the show really appears to be has to be done. Why? Because defining reality is not the job of actors, or families, or television networks. If it was, Keeping up With the Kardashians, would be an entirely different show ;)

Friday, January 4, 2013

If you Can't say Anything Nice...And Something Nice About Bravo

We've all heard the advice; "If you can't say anything nice-don't say anything at all." Until the phenomena of Bravolebrities, and fame-whores, in general came to my attention, I never realized the COMPLETE meaning of the old-saying.
There is a series airing on the TLC network, (if it has not been completely canceled yet), and I won't even mention the name. Nope. I won't devote a single bold-letter to name the program, because I don't want to publicize them at all. I was planning-on waiting 'till the bitter end, but trust me, they are a goner.
What this has to do with Bravo, is that the show that I'm "not saying anything at all"-about, was produced by the same company that brought us The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, AND The Real Housewives of Orange County, according to TV Fishbowl.
IF this series would have been seen on Bravo-TV, it could have been called, "The Real Housewives of Las Vegas". But Bravo declined to add these people to their franchise, and although the formula looks very-close to what we're used-to seeing in Housewife-land, these women won't ever be sitting on a couch with Andy Cohen.
Has Bravo actually developed some morals? I think they have. I congratulate Bravo for not giving that particular cast a platform on their network. The show-that-will-not-be-named, is a flop. Earning less than half-a-million viewers, and less-than three-hundred-thousand in the "important" demographics in the most recent ratings, Bravo's decision to reject this group has earned some bottom-line validation, and spared their viewers and sponsors.
I've noticed something else that has become more of a standard than a trend for The Housewives series, and that is that our Housewives children, and more importantly the exploitation of Housewives children, is no longer "mandatory".
I cannot say for sure if it was EVER a requirement that Housewives kids be as available as the women need to be in-order to qualify a gal for "Housewife"-status. But I do recall that Dina Manzo  lost her spot when her young daughter was no longer available.
For me, that instance looks-like the dividing-line between the time that it appears that Real Housewives families developed the ability to choose whether or not the children were on camera, or not, without sacrificing the opportunity.
It was only after Dina and her daughter left the New Jersey cast, that the viewers became accustomed to seeing the ladies without their offspring.
No mention has been made of any policy changes, so whether this was an intentional decision, or just a gradual adjustment to different family dynamics, such-as with Tamra on the OC wives whose ex-husband Simon decided not to grant permission for their children to appear, I really do not know. But I'd have to imagine that there must have been some type of consensus to agree to lighten-up what was previously expected.
The death of Russel Armstrong is also a major milestone on the Housewives timeline.  I think that there have been policy changes behind-the-scenes that can be attributed to consideration of Armstrong's suicide.
Now if they, (Bravo), would only officially find a way to embrace some kind-of disclaimer that would give their reality-talent a way to save-face in their real lives! There is no doubt in my mind that there are some Real Housewives' children, who have had to explain to their real-life friends and acquaintances, that their mom is not really "crazy", or a "whore", or any other of the negative labels that us "haters", (or their cast-mates, or the editors...), might apply. I would just LOVE to see THAT scene played-out haha! Instead-of seeing Ashley telling us that her mom is a drama-queen/shit-stirrer; to see one-of Danielle Staub's daughters explaining that her mom is just playing-the-part of a villain, and bringing drama to the show-which has GOT to be what ANY family-member, or cast-member, who's been portrayed badly would do. Wouldn't they?
Using my imaginary remote-viewing of what logically HAS to be how a Bravoleb' deals-with after-episode embarrassment in real-life, doesn't go far-enough to protect cast-members and their families from the consequences.
As long as Bravo maintains the illusion of reality in the strictest sense of the word, by NOT applying a disclaimer to the entire franchise, Bravo, in my opinion, continues to harm their cast-members families.
 I DO think that Bravo has lightened-up on the explicit pronouncements of the ultimate "reality", that we are seeing in the episodes. But the facts that the word "Real", with a capital "r", is carried with the show, and that the Housewives remain "in character" outside of the production, for interviews, reunions etc. demand that the "fourth wall" has got to be addressed.
I'm not the first person who has equated the truth of reality-performers with professional wrestlers, but wrestling has been granted an exception when it comes to versimilistude. Magicians are another category of performer who require that we suspend disbelief, in order to enjoy the act. Pro-wrestling and Illusion are both ancient forms of entertainment, and the permission to deceive for the sake of entertainment was granted long-ago by our ancestors.
Television, and TV's grand-daddy, radio, in comparison is still in it's growing-stages. Reality television, the illegitimate-child of documentary journalism, is current. In comparison to all of the other forms of media and entertainment, reality-television, could still be considered to be developing. The boundary-line of "real" continues to change, and it is left up to the producers, the performers, and the viewers to decide, on a case-by-case instance. Bravo continues to hold-out for the "real"-label, with a weak connection to reality. Even the most dedicated bitch of Bravo, has heard-about instances of other networks reality series scripting and fakery being exposed. If they're going-to script & fake an auction, a weight-loss show, or a gold-mining expedition-if they can't even trust the American public to be entertained with something as un-sexy and dry as a house-hunt, or a program about Amish people, the Bravo-audience is not somehow immune from the cognitive dissonance that we willingly try to ignore.
Reality television has spawned parodies of itself. An upcoming program on BET Network bills itself as "The Fakest Reality Show Ever" . Maybe satire and parody will be the ultimate public comment on reality television as we now know it?
A paparazzo was killed this week while in pursuit of teen-age superstar Justin Beiber. Performers like Beiber are a different category of celebrity from Reality-performers in that there is an ostensible talent, that earns them their celebrity. Bravolebrities, on the other hand, are presented as real people inviting the viewers to watch and judge them in their on-screen dramas and off-screen real life story. Although Beiber is a celebrity who is in the public eye, and considered a public personality who has given-up some of his privacy in exchange for public consumption, his talent and his on-stage performance shields him in ways that people who are only "famous for being famous", are not protected. There is a risk that was taken by the photographer in pursuing Mr. Beiber's private life.
And that is where a Bravolebrity drags his/or her entire family, and their entire history, including anyone they have ever met, onto the stage with them. And there lies the dilemma. There should be no inherent danger involved in seeking the truth and/or judgement of reality. But people DO get hurt.
Even the most careful of Real Housewives, like Phaedra Parks for instance, can control her own image by what she chooses to present, yet past associates are free to claim a piece of Phaedra's reality.
Angela Stanton did just that to Phaedra in her book, "Lies of a Real Housewife: tell the Truth and Shame the Devil"

Stanton struck a blow at Park's carefully crafted "reality", and that kind of response has to be expected as long as Bravo withholds a disclaimer or statement that speaks to the truth of what is presented. MTV didn't even use words when they broke the fourth wall to let viewers know the truth about The Hills. The final scene answered all of the questions that viewers had waited years to learn. (yes, it was scripted)
"The curtain closed, or rather, the veil was lifted on MTV's "The Hills" last night in the final moments of its series finale. As Kristin Cavallari pulled away, off to Europe to "find" herself, pal and former flame Brody Jenner stood on an empty LA street to watch her go. It was a bittersweet, emotional moment. But then the backdrop rolled away, the cameras panned out, and we saw that Jenner was now standing on a Hollywood lot, surrounded by crews, and that Cavallari's car was parked just a few feet away. She got out, they hugged, and that was that".-NY Daily News 2010

Bravo has left viewers and cast-members in a limbo of sorts with The Real Housewives. Years of un-written, and un-said rules, leave it up to all of US to decide what to do with all of it. Maybe 2013 will be the year that Bravo brings some clarity to the situation. Or maybe we will all just have to wait 'till the franchise ends. Maybe it will all be seen as an experiment with reality itself, with all of the players contributing to the outcome. Like a story that is still being written, we just may not know for sure until the end.