The Real Housewives
09 May '18 — wholesome home entertainment
‘I really shouldn’t be watching this.’
Watching the real housewives bicker over the pettiest things is what I enjoy the most. Of course I’m racked with guilt for liking such entertainment.
‘I should be better.’
I used to believe my enjoyment of reality tv, celebrity gossip was a symptom of dissatisfaction in life. I’m living poorly and bored–not living life to the fullest. As a result, I spend time enjoying trash entertainment.
‘Maybe I can change?’
I started to abstain from reality tv, vlogs, and celebrity news. Any content that idolizes a person in any way. But almost everything on youtube is about glorifying someone else. Additionally the blogs on my feed glorify lesser known people.
‘No! Stay away!’ I was hoping to cure whatever was wrong with me. Why am I so broken to find such entertainment enjoyable?
I started reading books and watching highly acclaimed films. The first few were amazing–definitely better quality than anything online. ‘It’s working! I feel good and I’m entertained!’ However, as I watched more films and read more, I realized good stories, deeply compelling ones comparable to what I find on reality tv, aren’t common.
‘Who says I need to be into high brow culture?’ I caught the snob in me bullying the commoner.
High brow, low brow, acclaimed books and films, reality tv, they all involve stories about people. Madame Bovary is the most soap opera-y story I’ve ever come across, yet, it’s considered a classic.
I continue to go back year after year to watch the housewives because their drama is more compelling than others I’ve come across. The fact that I go back to watching them year after year shows that they achieved a format of storytelling better than others.
Part of the guilt was a fear that I’d end up valuing luxury and wealth. ‘Would their behavior, preference for plastic surgery and designer clothes rub off on me? Would I begin to think stretched faces are beautiful?’
That’s only one aspect of these stories. It all depends what I pay attention to. I’m most amused when a housewife cannot hold her opinion. A statement of little substance (“she looked fat”) could cause a world of trouble. I learn tips for navigating life.
I also see challenges that comes with being amongst people, particularly the competition for greater respect. The anger and emotions driving each women are so relatable, I experience similar scenarios a few times a week: jealousy, striving to be seen better, wanting to fix how I’m perceived by others, wishing to voice my true opinion. Perhaps the drama in my life doesn’t get blown to the proportions on the show, however, inside, they feel just as dramatic.
Reality tv might not be good for others, but it’s wholesome entertainment for me.