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Real Housewives v. Bad Girls: Bring It!


I may not eat bon-bons in bed, but I admit that I watch a fair amount of television. I like to watch reruns of the shows I grew up with like The Cosby Show, MASH, and Friends. I love smart comedies like The Big Bang Theory.  I enjoy having my mind engaged in crime dramas like NCIS and Law & Order: SVU. I appreciate investigative shows like Dateline and 20/20. I’d cry like a baby if Fox News got rid of Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld, The O’Reilly Factor or Sean Hannity. I even like competition reality shows like Project Runway and Face Off. And what fall afternoon would be complete without my Ohio State Buckeyes football!

There is T.V. I can’t stand though.

By Vanessa Penick

I can’t stand reality shows where people are on them for no good reason other than a lack of shame. I can’t stand these reality shows where bad behavior is not only shown but encouraged. The number one offender of this is The Real Housewives of (insert rich enclave here). I’d like to know what is the definition of “real” and of “housewives” in this title. I get that the title comes from Desperate Housewives and that these pampered, rude and egotistical witches are the real-life counterparts of the characters on the series but real and housewives? Hardly.realhw4

Real housewives can’t afford to go out shopping for designer clothes whenever they feel like it. They don’t spend hours plotting against some rival. They don’t turn over tables and throw things. In short, they don’t act like these supposed ‘real housewives.’

Real housewives try to figure out how to buy food, pay the bills, put gas in the car and try to save some money on a paycheck (or under Obama an unemployment check) that seemingly gets smaller. They worry about how their kids are doing in school, and if their husband is going to be employed next year (or under Obama employed at all.)  They would never throw a table or break something because they’d have to replace it and they don’t have the money to do that. They don’t spend hours getting their hair and makeup done. They don’t walk around in $500 Manolo Blahniks and Chanel suits. They don’t have the money or time to do those things. They’re lucky if they have a nice pair of flats and some yoga pants. They don’t have a staff to boss around and treat like crap. If they want something done chances are they do it themselves.  I can’t think of a worse example of what ‘real housewives’ are than these over privileged society hellions.

Almost as bad is Oxygen’s Bad Girls Club. On this show, young women who are angry, easily irritated and on the verge of throwing down are put with other young women who are the same way and let the chips and punches fall where they may. What fun!

Shut up. It's my turn to gossip.

Shut up. It’s my turn to gossip, tramp.

Then there’s Lifetime’s two bully shows Dance Moms and Bring It. On these shows, we follow the antics of two bullying dance teachers who scream at their young students like they are demented drill sergeants. Hey, it’s dance class not basic training for the Marines. Worse yet is that Lifetime is a big supporter of the anti-bullying campaign and yet they hypocritically support these two shows.

All of these shows have one thing in common: they are rewarding bad behavior. They are showing women being aggressive, not assertive. They are showing women being bitchy, not being bold. They are showing women in all the worst possible lights and what’s worse is that the women line up to do it.

In an age in which one can get famous with a sex tape and no discernible talent (and yes I’m talking to you Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton), it is a pity when people care more about being famous and not so much for being fabulous at something worthwhile.



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