Friday, June 26, 2009

Who wants to be a "Real Housewife of New Jersey?" Dear God, not me.

This past weekend, I lost a good six hours of my life to a Bravo marathon of "The Real Housewives of New Jersey." I came in part way through so I had no idea what the back stories were or who the women were but I figured you don't really have to know the players' names to enjoy "Meerkat Manor" either so I forged ahead.

Like all good Bravo confections, this one is equal parts mesmerizing and horrifying. In the past, I've envied wealthy trophy wives -- like when I'd dream of buying a Gutenberg Bible and building a special room to house it in and hiring a special butler to wear white gloves and turn the pages for me, not that I ever have elaborate wealth fantasies, ever -- but now I've realized what a horror fest it would be to actually live like these ladies.

For one thing, the word "friend" doesn't necessarily mean what I think it means. From what I saw, the word "friend" actually translates in nouveau riche New Jersey circles into "shrewish crazy woman with whom I go shopping and occasionally wear animal print pleather." Seriously, these ladies are crazy! There was name calling and table throwing and evil eyes everywhere! It's like watching a less sympathetic "Sopranos."

Also, these ladies are hardcore in the beauty regimens. In one episode, Danielle, who's the ostracized member of the herd who would be left behind should she ever break a leg, threw a spa night party for her "friends." Important party planning tip: nothing livens up a social gathering like botulism. It's true! The best part was when the wives tried to peer pressure one of their friends into injecting Botox and then made fun of her when she wouldn't do it. It was totally like middle school except with bigger hair. I sympathize, though -- friends who won't shoot poison into their faces are total buzz kills. Funny aside: when Danielle had her plastic surgeon inject her lip and then she lost feeling in it, she totally looked like Mr. Ed trying to get peanut butter out of his teeth. Pure awesome.

I realized, too, that I could never be a housewife of New Jersey because I would probably have to be friends with Teresa and Teresa pronounces "boobies" as "bubbies." The poor girl was a bit flat-chested at the beginning of the series so she decided to go get a "bubby" implant which totally made me picture small Eastern European grandmothers trying to escape Teresa's A cups. Even worse, Teresa brought her friends with her to the plastic surgeon's office where they giggled at her flat-chestedness, debated the pros and cons of saline versus silicone -- and no, the fact that one might give you cancer if it bursts was never mentioned. They then proceeded to pass her future boobs around the room in the wonderfully horrified presence of the surgeon, who kinda looked like he was going to cry. Here's the clip. Watch for Teresa's insight on why it's better to have a hot doctor touch your bubbies than an ugly doctor.



Damn you, Bravo, for making this wreck of a show so addictive. I had to watch two episodes of "Kathy Griffin's Life on the D List" just to clean my TV palate. That can't be good.

7 comments:

Loretta said...

I couldn't bring myself to watch that clip but based on that preview, I had one thought: "Dear god, what do you have to do to your skin to make it turn that color??"

Stephanie said...

That poor poor doctor.

The Raisin Girl said...

Suddenly, I'm really really REALLY glad I don't have television. For the most part it seems to just glorify the most disgusting sector of humanity.

Stone Girl said...

I know this is kind of like saying "I prefer filtered cigarettes to unfiltered cigarettes," but - I can only watch the New York version of Real Housewives. It's my secret reality TV guilty pleasure. Those women crack me up. All the other incarnations scare the crap out of me. The women are beyond fake and bizarre. Haven't seen more than one episode. The clip is great though.

Jen said...

I could never bring myself to watch that show. From all the previews, I can tell that these women are horrible and shallow people who have no purpose in life other than to be horrible and shallow. And worse yet TV tries to sell this as a standard that women should aspire to. Yuck!

amanda said...

I am ashamed to admit it, but I kind of love The Real Housewives of New Jersey. They're this mesmerizing combination of over-the-top personalities and totally lacking in self-awareness that makes them reality television gold. The 'housewives' seem so one-dimensional that it's almost like watching cartoon characters. Really orange, idiotic cartoon characters who are obsessed with fake bubbies.

Liz said...

Amanda, there is no shame in watching "Housewives" -- okay, maybe a little but it's a good kind of shame. I watch it everytime I flip past it. I just can't resist. I'd love to do a weekend where I alternate between episodes of The Sopranos and Housewives. I'd be afraid to ever visit Jersey again.