Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Culture - A Bravo New World


There are people out there “above” reality television and I say good for you! You are mentally superior and probably a happier person. Absolutely. Without a doubt, actually.

But would I give up my Bravo shows for a chance at self-actualization? Oh hells no!

I absolutely LIVE for my Housewives and my Flipping Out and my Top Chef. Little in this world titillates me like the sight of Tom Colicchio’s bald head.

Yes, it is cerebral vacation after I put the kids to bed. But today I challenge you to open your mind to the idea that these shows actually offer something deeper and more meaningful to our social and cultural landscape.

Wait! Don’t leave yet!

Let’s focus on the Housewives franchise or “the stereotypical antics of catty, drama-driven trainwrecks obsessed with looks, money and fame.”

These women are brilliant. It’s that plain and simple. They create complex plots of tragedy and melodrama out of the ether and present it as “real life.” In grad school, this meta-reality would be referred to as the “performance of everyday life.”  How do they do it? It is as if they know the secret of fire…simply rub two silicone implants together and, voila, a hot mess ignites!

And don’t get me started on the editing. A housewife makes a peanut butter sandwich. Add music and close-ups on befuddled faces. The scene is now rife with comedy and relatable charm. You know these people. You are that woman. You too routinely botch a simple, tasty afternoon snack while wearing diamonds in a Maloof mansion. It’s the American dream people!

Throughout each season, villains emerge and heroes prevail. Until the next season when the villain’s porn tape comes out and the hero is bankrupt. But, like the phoenix, they will rise out of the cigarette ashes with new hair extensions and magic tits to fly once more in the face of adversity.

The American dream.

Though my full potential was lost somewhere between DC and Atlanta, I see my viewership as charitable act. I give of my time so that they can continue making tens of hundreds of dollars and eventually leave their controlling husbands to stand on their own two Gucci-heeled feet. Women supporting women. It’s a feminist cause, really.

I don't ask a lot of my husband, really. (I hear snickering somewhere!) But I do ask that, when a reunion episode is on, he keep the children as far away from me as possible. It's for their own safety...and the feminist movement. 

What about you? Do you endorse this cause?

Tune in for my next lecture in cultural studies: “Sister Wives: Five Idiots or One Brilliant Dude?” Just kidding! Maybe. 

1 comment:

stilesjess said...

So funny Michelle!! Love your take on these shows & life, and can't wait to read more! Your cooking blog was also hysterical & so true -I can definitely relate!:)