All Articles Tagged "reality tv"

Gabrielle Reece On STRONG, Making Fitness A Priority, And Her Afro-Trini Roots

April 12th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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While attending the NBC Summer Press Day in Los Angeles earlier this month, I had the chance to chat with the former model, volleyball star and popular TV personality, Gabrielle Reece. After years of killing it (literally) on the court at Florida State University and while on professional volleyball tours, Reece modeled in many major magazines, hosted a variety of reality fitness competitions and became a health writer and fitness expert. After doing all of that in the prime of her career, Reece, now 46, married and a mother of three, still manages to look long, lean…and like a badass. And she’s back on television, hosting a new NBC reality fitness competition show called STRONG, which premieres this week and is executive produced by Sylvester Stallone. On the show, 10 women from around the country link up with 10 skilled male trainers of varying specialties to help them either get back in fighting shape or to finally lose weight, tone up and transform their lives.

But how has Reece managed to stay in such great shape for so many years while balancing a busy work schedule and three kids? By dedicating her life to fitness.

“I always say, women get their nails done, and they spend a lot of time online. So they do have the 30 minutes,” Reece said while speaking on making time for health and exercise. “So it’s about deciding and being ferocious about it, and having the discipline to say you’re going to go, and you’re going to go right now.”

Reece also said that half the battle is finding forms of exercise that you actually enjoy, as well as healthy foods that actually taste good. The more fun you have with exercising and eating healthy, of course, the less of a chore it feels like to get up and get moving to improve your lifestyle. Also, if you have someone supporting you as you make these changes, the more likely you are to meet your goals. Just like the 10 women being supported by the 10 expert trainers on STRONG. 

“I think it’s first about finding things you can actually tolerate doing so every day it’s not like ‘Oh, I hate that,’ Reece said. “I don’t go and lift and say, ‘I’m so excited!’ But I can deal with it. And as far as foods, if you hate certain foods, don’t make it like, ‘I have to eat that because it’s good for me.’ Find the foods you know you can deal with that you know serve your body. But you also need to have to have a teammate, which is what the show is about. So whether it’s a best girlfriend, or maybe not a best girlfriend, but she’s on the same page as you with this, get it done with her. But it’s about priority. There wouldn’t be a dilemma of, ‘Oh I’m busy, and I don’t really feel like making it to pick my kid up from school.’ You make it happen. So if you put this on the same docket as ‘This is a priority, I’m going to take care of myself,’ then it gets done.”

And Reece has been committing to her workout schedule for years. It hasn’t been easy juggling everything, but she makes time almost six days a week to get active.

“I do a circuit training that’s pretty rigorous, but it’s one that anyone can do,” Reece said. “And then I do in the pool holistic training. I have a very bad right knee, so there’s ways while I’m learning to train to move around and work with what I’m dealing with.”

And what she’s found out from her rigorous training and health journey is that while you should want to get active, sometimes it truly does pay off to sit down somewhere and give your body proper time to rest.

“The biggest thing I’ve learned is to take a day off when I’m genuinely tired,” Reece said. “To assign a day off is actually a mistake because you might be genuinely burned out and tired on a day that you go to train, and you do more harm to yourself. So I think it’s about people really being in tune with themselves.”

She’s also learned that food is 80 percent of the deal, as in, eating better and making proper choices. However, it’s most important to make a commitment to bettering yourself and sticking to it. Which is what Reece loves about STRONG, the contestants on the show, and their dedication.

“What these trainers and trainees were able to do, was to me pretty mindblowing,” Reece said. “It’s pretty amazing what these women took on. They were shifting their minds and then the body follows.”

Yes, Reece shared some fascinating and informative knowledge with reporters, but along with learning about her health regimen and how she balances everything as a busy mom, I also wanted to ask her about something she rarely talks about and that many people probably didn’t know of: her Afro-Trinidadian roots.

While walking around the garden after-party following the Press Day event, I tapped Reece on the shoulder and let it rip:

“I just wanted to know; I heard that you were Trinidadian. Is that true?”

Not knowing what response I was going to receive, Reece actually smiled and said, “Yes! Can you tell?” before laughing.

Reece continued, “My grandfather was Black, and my grandmother was White. A lot of my family are still in Trinidad.”

Reece would go on to joke with me about how the young White women she played volleyball with were always surprised when they would find out that she is, in fact, mixed. But she made it clear to me that there were always people who could tell she was different. Black women to be specific. She cited her stature (she’s 6’3″) as a dead giveaway.

“Women of color can always tell,” Reece laughed. “They’re the ones who ask me.”

Sorry, but inquiring minds (like moi), just wanted to know!

Now, if you want to see what STRONG is all about and get inspired, you can check out the show when its special 2-hour preview airs this Wednesday at 9/8c, and when it officially premieres Thursday, April 14 at 8/7c. Check out the trailer below:

K. Michelle Reveals New, Smaller Behind, Says She’s Returning To “Love And Hip Hop Atlanta”

December 28th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Just last month, we told you that K. Michelle was decreasing the size of her surgically enhanced posterior to advance her career.

Well, in a little over a month’s time, the singer and reality star has done just that.

She revealed her new smaller booty, which she calls Betsy, in a series of Instagram shots.

And here’s another one, with another angle.

We’ll see what new ventures come K. Michelle’s way now that her measurements are a bit smaller.

Interestingly enough, K. Michelle’s career choices seems to be moving in a bit of reverse direction.

During a recent tour stop, the singer/songwriter, who already has the “K. Michelle: My Life” show on VH1, announced that she would be returning to “Love and Hip Hop Atlanta.”

#PressPlay: #KMichelle announces that she is going back to #LHHATL

A video posted by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on

This is certainly an interesting development considering K. Michelle left the show because she didn’t want to keep blocking her blessings by behaving so negatively in front of the camera. Perhaps she wants to show the world and her former castmates that she’s truly turned over a new leaf. But if our knowledge of reality shows proves anything, I’d bet that she’s going to go back and continue to kick up dust. After all, that’s what made her a household name in the first place.

What do you think about K. Michelle’s new booty? Is it a wise decision for her to return to “Love and Hip Hop Atlanta”?

Bow Wow’s Baby Momma Denies Abuse Allegations

December 10th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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bow wow's baby momma feat

Earlier today, we reported that Erica Mena accused her ex fiancé Bow Wow of beating women and she hoped that type of karma didn’t get passed down to his daughter–his seed as she put it.

TheShadeRoom caught her leaving a more damning comment than the one we initially reported, saying:

“Now he can go back to beating her ass again. I’m good on dealing with his Little man complex.”

Mena was referencing the mother of Bow Wow’s child, Joie Chavis. She also mentioned that she had a photo that would change his life. Hmm…

Well, the abuse claim is a strong one.

So strong in fact, that Chavis had to step forward and refute the claim.

She stepped into The Shade Room to leave a comment.

“Beat? When? Where? I NEVER say anything but this sh*t is just unacceptable, and ridiculous to say the least. Shad has never laid a finger on me, so dead it!”

Source: Instagram/TheShadeRoom

Source: Instagram/TheShadeRoom

She also said that she and Bow Wow are not getting back together. They are simply hanging out as friends.

According to TheShadeRoom

“Y’all gotta chill with these long a** paragraphs. It’s not that deep bruh, and we are not together. We are just friends, and I am single. I know it’s probably weird to some who have f*cked up relationships and can’t co-parent but that’s not the case here.”

Those might be her intentions but we’ll see what Shad has up his sleeve.

“I’m Not Showing The World Who You Really Are” Erica Mena Claims Bow Wow Beats Women

December 10th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Bow Wow


We’re sure you already knew this but Erica Mena and Bow Wow are done. And in true former reality star, washed up rapper fashionm they’re using their social media platforms to talk about their breakup.

Last night, several social media sites like The Shade Room and Fameolous were posting videos of Erica Mena talking about going on dates and then lamenting the flawed characters of men.

And then this one where she turned up a little bit.

#PressPlay: Oop! #EricaMena might have hit a nerve with #Bowwow 😩😩😩 (view previous post)

A video posted by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on

Somebody was mad.

And what was Bow Wow doing during Erica’s outbursts? Well, he was galavanting about with his baby momma. He posted a picture of them in the club, left a comment under an Instagram video, with a bouquet of emoji flowers. He even flirtatiously called her “punk.” You know, in the same way dudes would call you “big head” not really knowing how to express their true intent or emotions.

Then earlier today, Bow Wow posted another image of himself and his baby momma hanging out in what looks like a home. There are no receipts but I wouldn’t be surprised if it were the basement that Bow Wow and Erica occupied during their courtship and engagement.

We all deserve to be Happy

A photo posted by Bow wow (@shadmoss) on

Well, if she was being sly or coy before, that picture sent Mena over the edge. (Which makes me believe that it was indeed the basement.) Within the same hour, she tweeted this.

It’s funny Erica is talking about CBS checks, when Bow Wow was the one who made her walk away from that VH1 “Love and Hip Hop” money. Wonder how she’s feeling about that now.

Then, as if that were enough. She’s also alleging that he beats women.

Oop #EricaMena is alleging that #Bowwow used to beat his baby mama #JoieChavis ! This is getting ugly

A photo posted by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on

I don’t feel comfortable saying whether or not this is true, so I’m just going to leave this here. I do feel comfortable saying that everyone involved in this situation is a hot mess.

When these two first got together, I knew they would never make it down the aisle. And here we are. With shots and allegations being fired.

What’s so interesting about it though is that both Bow Wow and Erica were on this very public crusade against his baby momma, so it’s funny that she’s the exact one he went running back to. It would be even more interesting if she were indeed the victim of his abuse.

These two are something else.

What do you make of all this?

This Is Why Whoopi’s Daughter Remarried Her Husband Three Times

November 10th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
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Whoopi’s Daughter, Alex Martin, has just entered the world of reality TV which means people (like us) are about to get all up in her business pretty soon.

According to Alex is the name of the Centric docuseries following Alex’s family life as well as her business ventures and when she stopped by to chat with us about, being on TV, and her fear of Internet trolls, we had one main question for her: why did you marry your husband three times?!

Check out what she had to say in the video above and be sure to tune into According to Alex on Centric Saturdays at 10 pm.

We Need More Khadijah James And Joan Claytons When It Comes To Black Women On Television

September 15th, 2015 - By Alexandra Olivier
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If it weren’t for endless reruns of Law & Order Special Victims Unit, Criminal Minds and everything on Food Network, I would probably get rid of my television all together.

Simply put, there is nothing on the tube. To be specific, there isn’t enough variety in the stories being told. Particularly the ones about and, sadly, made by Black women.

The original programming I see with a Black woman lead character focuses so much on her love life that we forget these women have lives outside of the men they’re dating, dodging and being dogged by. From Mary Jane Paul leaving Andre only to have the next stage of her storyline revolve around her ex, David, to Scandal focusing more on Olivia’s relationship with Fitz than her work with her consulting firm, it’s all about love. Everything else about a character’s life that is also of importance has to take a backseat, and frankly, I’m frustrated with this narrow focus.

And please don’t tell me that reality television is our new normalized reality. If we’re not watching every Black woman’s struggle boil down to the hands of a man (hence the word “Love” and “Wives” in all the program titles), we are squabbling with other women. But we are not shadows of the opposite sex. The opposite sex does not consume the ways in which we conduct our lives or our relationships with other women. Or at least they shouldn’t.

There are no sitcoms or late-night shows to binge-watch that showcase Black women in the real. Our daily life. For instance, pursuing businesses – and not striking another female contender down while doing so. Balancing healthy relationships with friends and family first, and dealing with the quirks and problems with everyday life–and then the men who provide us with intimacy and sometimes heartbreak after the fact.

There are no Girlfriends, just frenemies using each other until the water runs dry. I don’t see women facing loss and having the unwavering support of true friends. Women who are a shoulder, filling up your glass and still affirming your beauty and purpose as you sit there with a tear-stained cheek, runny mascara and all. All of our encounters aren’t catty. And that’s the problem: there is no variety to offer a semblance of balance. Yes, there is attitude and shade, but do not forget the support and love. Yes, characters should have relationship issues, but does that have to be the breadth of every episode? Where’s the variation? Where’s the depth?

I loosely base the pursuit of my writing career on Khadijah James. I wanted to write and eventually start my own magazine just like her. In my head, my friends and I would be the modern-day “Living Single” – quirks and all. On that classic sitcom, a woman owned her own business, and though James (played by Queen Latifah) didn’t have a man by her side a majority of the time, her life was full. Amazing friends and experiences provided her with the comprehensive story she needed and that we needed to see. Bringing a man (i.e. Scooter) into her life didn’t become the center of her storyline, but a side story that provided her with a healthy partnership.

If it’s more and more of the same, TV can keep their dime-a-dozen Stevie J and Joseline spinoffs and their lovelorn Black women characters. I’m holding out hope in the meantime that Issa Rae’s upcoming HBO series, Insecure, will fill a void, and that her characters will have more to talk about and deal with than the same old woes.

Until then, mindless reruns and missing Elliot Stabler will have to suffice.

Lawsuits And Left Hooks: Reality TV Scandals We Didn’t See Coming

August 11th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

When a particularly scandalous reality TV show hits the airwaves, it’s time to sit back, grab some popcorn and wait for the scandal you know is coming. And while we know that with reality TV comes drama, these real-life scandals still caught us by surprise.

Is Reality TV Ruining Our Humanity?

July 3rd, 2015 - By Kendra Koger
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

I know, I know, I’m one of the main contributors on MadameNoire who write posts on reality television.  I do.  I still actively watch all of the reruns of the “Flavor of Loves,” “I Love New Yorks,” “Rock of Loves,” “Laguna Beaches,” and a few others that aired while I was in college.

But, as I’ve gotten older, and the participants have too; I have to be honest, reality television has lost part of its appeal for me.  Besides “Real Housewives of Atlanta” and a few guilty viewings of “Love and Hip Hop” New York and Hollywood, I don’t really care too much for most of the current shows out now.

I would like to think that it’s maturity that has squelched my reality television appeal.  I honestly believe that that’s part of it, but I feel like an even larger part of it is when reality television becomes real and reminds me that we’re watching actual people, not actors.

That became abundantly true for me when the Duggar Family’s scandal broke.  Before it became public, I remember my youngest sister telling my family about how rumors had been swirling about Josh Duggar for years.  According to someone who claimed to be a church member, there was an old online post about him confessing his misdeeds to his church before being sent away for “help.”  After that, she declared never to watch the show again. But since the show continued to air, I think people just didn’t pay attention to the rumor.

Fast forward to this current year, when the truth revealed itself.  As heinous of a crime as this is, what’s hard for me to wrap my mind around are the people who have wanted to keep the show on the air.  Not out of solidarity to the family, and not for wanting to be in denial about the rumors, but because this family was their entertainment.

I read comment sections that expressed things like:  “Well, just because he did, why do we have to suffer by them taking the show off the air?”

Those types of comments reminded me of the tragedy that changed the course of VH1’s reality show line-ups.

In 2009, Ryan Jenkins, who was a contestant on VH1’s “Megan Wants A Millionaire,” and the defunct season of “I Love Money 3” committed suicide after a warrant was put out for his arrest for the murder of his then-wife Jasmine Fiore.

VH1 decided to not air “I Love Money 3,” and I remember being appalled by some of the comments in the section for it.

There were comments like:  “I mean, I understand that her family doesn’t want to see him, but why do the rest of us have to suffer?  They don’t have to watch the show.”

Sometimes it seems as though when you blur the line of entertainment and reality, people lose sight of the fact that these are real people, who have real lives.  If a show needs to be cancelled or put on hiatus, our focus shouldn’t be on losing our entertainment.

Most people wouldn’t want the difficult times or the fallback they or their family faced documented and then dissected through the world.  They don’t want the person who wronged them to be backed by a population who questions their innocence because they don’t want to miss their favorite show.

There seems to be an essence of lost humanity that comes when we become attached to a reality show.  I feel as though people stop feeling sympathy for the participants because “they decided to be on this show and broadcast their lives.”  However, some of the tragedies that happened were before or away from the glare of the cameras.  Though these people have introduced you into their lives for a few moments a week, never forget that at the end of the day, they are a person, just like you.

Exclusive: Sara Stokes Speaks On Da Band’s Exclusion From Bad Boy Reunion, Domestic Violence Allegations

July 2nd, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Sara Stokes

Courtesy of Sara Stokes, Jay Productions

Sunday evening, fans were treated to a special Bad Boy Entertainment reunion performance. Acts that were never expected to share a stage again reminded us why we were screaming “Bad Boy for life!” back in the early 2000s. However, there were also many acts that were not included in the reunion such as Craig Mack, Total, Carl Thomas and Da Band. We were recently able to catch up with Da Band member Sara Stokes, who shared her thoughts on the reunion, domestic violence allegations made against her, time spent behind bars and her new reality show “From The Bottom Up,” which airs on BET this fall.

Sara Stokes "Sneak Peek"MN: We hear that you have a new single coming out. Can we expect an album as well?

I definitely have an album coming out. The single will be released July 11th and it’s called “Sneak Peek.” It’s featuring Babz. Babz was obviously on [Making The Band 2] with me. Everybody knows Babz. She killed it. She has 16 bars on this song, so I’m excited. It shows more of a sexier side. It’s that women’s anthem. You have to know that you’re the sh-t. If you don’t know who you are, who the heck else will?

MN: Did you and Babz keep in touch after Da Band or did you recently reconnect?

We’ve always kept in touch, everybody in Da Band. They’re like family to me. We all went through some crazy stuff. There were like three seasons of “Making The Band 2.” We lived together. It was definitely an experience that I’d never take back, and I love them all like they are my family.

Babz will also be coming through on my new show. “From The Bottom Up,” produced by Nicci Gilbert, James DuBose and Queen Latifah. Look out for that. It’s going to be on BET this fall. It’s a docu-series, and it’s more about positivity. I’m tired of the negative overshadowing everything.

MN: I read on our sister site, Bossip, that the BET cameras were literally waiting outside for you when you were released from prison.

Yeah, that’s true. As soon as I stepped foot out into the world again, it was like lights, camera, action! What the heck? But you know, it was part of my story, and I’m glad that they captured that. That’s real, raw emotion, me stepping out for the first time and just seeing my children, my parents and everybody else that I love. I was like, ‘Wow, this is amazing.’ I had a different insight about everything anyway. When I came out, I heard violins, an orchestra, everything.

MN: How long were you in prison?

It was two and a half months I was up in there. Two and a half months of me, myself and I. Talk about that. You really, really find out who you are when you ain’t got nobody else but yourself up in there. I feel like it made me a better person. Sometimes, you do need to sit down for a minute and figure out what you’re trying to do in life. Like, ‘Okay, if this is not working out right here and this is messing stuff up, let me try it this way.’

LisaRaye Shades The Hell Out Of Reality TV Standing Right Next To Mona Scott-Young

June 29th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
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LisaRaye has never been one to hold her tongue and we saw that first-hand on the red carpet at the BET Awards when we asked her about her recent remarks on the double standard Black women face in society. We asked LisaRaye what she thought could be done to change the status quo and that’s when the “Single Ladies” star basically said as long as Black women are on reality TV acting a fool, things will never improve. The irony of it all? Standing less than a foot away from the actress was the godmother of ratchet reality TV women, Mona Scott-Young, and LisaRaye cared not. Watch the footage in the video above. What do you think about what LisaRaye said?