Monday, August 30, 2010

A 'Real' Red Hot Mess


I’ll admit, from time to time, I sit down in front of the television, flip through the channels and stop upon the train wreck that is the “Real Housewives” series on Bravo. I’m always left wondering why these people would put their lives on display and submit themselves, and their families, to this odd fishbowl lifestyle, knowing all along that the producers are going to set up certain situations that portray them as caricatures (although, often it’s not far from the truth, if not all of the truth). And, rarely is the cast portrayed in a favorable light.

I would imagine the women, or couples, who sign up for this type of program are fame seekers, looking for yet another way to make a buck. And while these people are supposedly wealthy in the first place -- because the focus of the show is lifestyles of the rich and self-centered -- often times they are living in high debt and need the income from Bravo to supplement their lifestyles. (Case in point: I read that one of the New Jersey housewives filed for bankruptcy, the bank has seized her house and is auctioning off her furniture. I hang my head in shame that I even know this type of information.)

As you may be aware, the latest installment of the series takes place in Washington, D.C. The show received a great deal of pre-launch press when the gate-crasher Salahis attended the president’s State Dinner, uninvited. It became a big brouhaha. And, from what little I’ve seen of the show, this couple seems to have a habit of doing such things. The terms “social climbers” and “opportunists” fit these folks to a T. But, I became even more intrigued with the series after reading an article yesterday in the New York Times Style section that featured RHODC couple Cat and Charles Ommanney. She’s the ruder-than-rude Brit and he is (or was) her photojournalist husband.

Charles Ommanney truly is an insider in Washington (as opposed to the rest of the cast), having worked for Newsweek, traveling with presidents and dignitaries, covering their every move. And to do so, he flies under the radar, remaining in the background as he documents their lives. Now, though, he’s known as the husband of one of the nasty housewives and his street cred is ruined. He signed up for this circus, supposedly, because he loved his new wife and wanted to please her. But they are now going through a divorce and he’s beyond embarrassed for having been a part of such a sideshow.

So, should we feel sorry for Charles because he joined in the name of love, yet was burned in the end? Not sure. It certainly makes for good drama. And, of course, it leaves the execs at Bravo with big smiles and fat wallets.
Photo from The New York Times 

13 comments:

James said...

You make several excellent points. Just as some people have to smell the milk, I have watched a few minutes of these shows.Even this fellow gets no sympathy from me.Everyone's life has drama in it, but you have to maintain some dignity while dealing with it. Screaming b***h at someone to make a few bucks ain't my idea of decent behavior.

JDB (Chin Up, Pretty Smile, Give 'Em Hell) said...

I got sucked into the OC and NJ versions of the show. (hanging my head in shame)I don't want to watch, but I just have to see what insane thing is going to happen next.

My biggest question is, who can live with all that drama?

Janell @ Isabella and Max said...

Oh, I've too been surfing the channels and have stumble across this series...what a mess! My husband always rolls his eyes when this show gets turned on and it isn't on for long...what crazy lives and to want to broadcast it for the world is a little insane.

Teresa Hatfield said...

I am like you; I am ashamed that I know what I do about these freaks. Nah, I don't feel sorry for him. I am aware that the Atlanta housewives are far from what they want you to believe. Financially that is. It is just a cluster of wannabes. Love this post! Have a great week.
Teresa (Splendid Sass)

Let The Tide Pull Your Dreams Ashore said...

Real Housewives=guilty pleasure! xx

Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

I don't feel sorry for any of them. They knew what these shows were about. And I am pretty sure they don't even get paid very much either. So it seems to me that they really do all this just for the fame factor. How gross! I do love the Bethenny show though. She cracks me up.

From All Stitched Up said...

You made my day. I've been watching RHODC behind closed doors and am always amazed at the behavior. This just proves you can't live a happy life behaving badly like that. I enjoy your blog and thanks for admitting you too watch this craziness. It's just fun.

High Heeled Life said...

I too am guilty of a "little guilty pleasure" every once is awhile... I agree with James about being rude to someone on national tv .. just to make a few bucks. But I'm sure all of us will still continue to peak in from time to time...

EntertainingMom said...

Seriously... he HAD to have known what he was getting into... Any time one agrees to a reality show, the dirty laundry comes out of the dryer and on to the drying rack outdoors for the whole world to see...

bevy said...

Just read the NYT article... Wow.

Elizabeth said...

i'm a Bravo fan too. I just watched a reunion show tonight. These women are just crazy!

Suburban Princess said...

I really dont think he would've signed up for the show without ever seeing it to know what he was getting into.

It's a shame these shows have strayed so far from what they originally were - a peek behind the gates.

Kerr said...

I think DC might be the worst of the Housewives series. Those women are outrageous. Sometimes I get embarassed for them just watching it! I was wondering how Charles was going to get away with being on TV and being such an important photographer. He should have been one of the husbands that chose not to be on camera, like Dina from NJ.