All Articles Tagged "reality tv"
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 Nailbuzz.com, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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 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?
Whether you remember Kim Fields as Tootie from “The Facts of Live,” or better recall her as wig-wearing Regine, reports are trickling in that the veteran actress is set to be the new cast member on Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.”
Now, we know why Claudia Jordan got the boot.
Sources have confirmed exclusively to Perez Hilton that Kim is coming on board.
There’s no word from Kim Fields yet about whether or not the news is true but we’re kind of on the fence with this casting decision.
On the one hand, we’re interested to see how she’ll interact with the other ladies but we’re also afraid that she might get sucked into the mess and drama.
And we would absolutely hate to see one of our faves go out like that.
Either way, good luck to Kim and we’ll keep you posted.
Will you be tuning in for season 8? What do you think about Fields’ decision to join the show?
If you’ve just gotten used to the fact that we no longer see Evelyn Lozada living la vida loca on “Basketball Wives” every Monday night, you’re in for a rude reminder. The reality star is quickly returning to a TV near you as the Oprah Winfrey Network has just announced the air date for her upcoming docu-series — a fancy name for another reality show — which has gotten a name upgrade: “Livin’ Lozada.”
We first heard this show was in the works back in March. At the time, the series was announced under the working title of “Evelyn,” but along with the official series name and air date of July 11, the network has also updated the show description as follows:
“Livin’ Lozada” follows the lives of Evelyn Lozada, of “Basketball Wives” fame, and her 21-year-old daughter Shaniece. Evelyn has moved on from the heartache of her highly publicized divorce in a big way. She is engaged to big league baseball player Carl Crawford and the happy couple have a one-year-old son, Leo. Between learning to be a mom all over again, setting up a new home in Los Angeles for her and her family, working on getting the sequel to her first book published, as well as dealing with issues surrounding her family back East…Evelyn has a lot going on!
Not to be outdone, her daughter Shaniece, has a blossoming modeling career and is working on starting her own bikini line, looking to her mom for advice which she (sometimes) takes. Each episode is filled with close friends and relatives in the ladies’ lives who help round out a world filled with laughter, support and encouragement as we follow Shaniece carving out the new life before her and Evelyn moving on from her past and embracing the new life she has found.
Should be interesting, if for no other reason than to see Leo’s cute little self on the screen each week.
“Livin’ Lozada” will debut at 9p July 11 on OWN and will be followed by the return of the popular docu-series, “Flex and Shanice,” at 10 pm. Will you be watching either series?
Photo Credit: BravoTV
There has been no shortage of drama on this season of The Real Housewives of Atlanta. From Apollo’s prison sentence to Kandi and Todd’s never ending issues with Mama Joyce, the Bravo reality show has done more than deliver. But last night’s episode was filled with so many awkward moments and namedropping (ahem, Roger Bobb), we almost lost count. Almost. Hit the flip to see the most cringe worthy scenes from the latest RHOA and get a sneak peek at some of the turmoil taking place next week.
RHOA Rewind: ‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta’s’ Most Cringe Worthy Moments
There is nothing like seeing someone who looks like you on the cover of a magazine. Beautiful Black women, all shades, and hues, lending their testimonies of struggle and success. That is why I felt an extreme sense of pride when I saw the May cover of Essence magazine. When I picked up the magazine, smiling back at me were five of the most prominent Black storytellers, directors, and producers who have the added bonus of being amazing women: Issa Rae, Mara Brock Akil, Debbie Allen, Shonda Rhimes and Ava Duvernay, dressed in all white. I immediately flipped through the pages to read the article.
Over wine and cheese in Beverly Hills, these women discussed everything from the increase in the number of young people of color in the business and the positive effect it’s having on mainstream television, to the strain success has had on their personal lives. I could feel the camaraderie and respect amongst these women through the page. It was inspiring.
After I had read the article, I turned on the television, and on came Love & Hip Hop Atlanta. Out of nowhere sprang an interesting thought. I could not help but to wonder if there is room for Mona Scott-Young at the table with her fellow Black storytellers and producers?
Mona Scott-Young is the founder and CEO of Monami Entertainment. Under Monami, Scott-Young holds both film and television credits. Her most popular production is the Love & Hip Hop docu-series on VH1. The franchise is the top-rated show on VH1, with the season 4 debut of Atlanta pulling in 6.2 million viewers, marking the show’s highest rated season premiere yet.
It seems that many people have a love-hate relationship with Scott-Young. They hate the content of the Love & Hip Hop franchise, deeming it “ratchet television.” However, there has to be something people love about it because they keep tuning in every week. Within right, people are always questioning Scott-Young’s motives and why she would produce a show where Black women are portrayed as stereotypical characters who are violent, argumentative, loud, oversexed, and belittled by men. In an interview with MTV’s Sway, Scott-Young said that these women “have every right to tell their stories. I think they’re valid stories, and judging by the numbers, they’re stories that people want to see and hear about. But if this is not your cup of tea, there are other great shows on other networks that you may view as well.”
And she is right. There are other great shows on other networks to indulge in. Two of my favorites are ABC’s Scandal, written by Shonda Rhimes, and BET’s Being Mary Jane, written by Mara Brock Akil. Both ladies, as previously mentioned, graced the May cover of Essence and were touted as “Game Changers.” Scandal chronicles the turbulent life of Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington), Washington’s most prominent “fixer.” One major part of Olivia’s storyline is that she is having an affair with the President. Affairs seem to be pretty popular on television these days–just watch the first season of BET’s Being Mary Jane. Mary Jane Paul (Gabrielle Union) has a lucrative career in broadcast journalism and this past season, she landed the prime time anchor position on her network. Yet at the height of her career, Mary Jane finds herself single and feels that the only way she will be complete is if she gets married and has children. Mary Jane, like Olivia, in an attempt to move past a very married admirer, explores a sexual relationship with several different men. While their lives are a bit on the messy side, we tout them as complex characters. Real women.
But are characters like Olivia Pope and Mary Jane Paul also perpetuating some of the same stereotypes and negativity about Black women that Scott-Young is accused of showcasing? Are the women of Love & Hip Hop just as complicated as these two beloved protagonists?
Akil, like Scott-Young, is unapologetic about including the sexuality of black women in her stories. In the Essence article she states, “We’ve been presented before as asexual or as whores. No, I’m a human being. I’m a human being, and human beings were made to be touched and have sex so that they can make more human beings. That’s just how it works. I certainly want to highlight it. I want our humanity in our sexuality.”
Rhimes agreed with Akil and said, “I just began a systematic push that we were going to talk about sexuality equally, in the same way. We’re not going to pretend that…Listen, if you could shoot someone in the face on television…I hope to God my child never shoots someone in the face, but I really hope she has wonderful sex.”
This systematic push is evident in all of their shows, and even in Scott-Young’s programs. These women have chosen to tell the stories about Black women as authentically as they know how without allowing the burden of stereotypes to deter them from creating work they feel is necessary. Rhimes, Akil, and Scott-Young both manage to monopolize their perspective networks in a predominantly white male industry. That, in and of itself, should be commended.
Don’t get me wrong. I am disheartened by some of the women’s choices on Love & Hip Hop. Moreover, being a part of a Black Greek Letter Organization, I could not bring myself to support Sorority Sisters, a program Scott-Young was allegedly tied to at some point in time. However, even though I may disagree with some of her content, it does not lessen the history she is making on television.
As Akil said, we — Black women and men — are human. We make mistakes. We are not abnormal. We are not strange. Some of us go off to college and become successful in our careers while others may remain loyal to the ways of our ‘hoods. We are doctors, lawyers, and scientists. We are also strippers, drug addicts, and adulterers. Just like every other race, we are full of complex and very different people. Because we are ridiculed and stereotyped so much we try to hide and cover up those members of our community whom we feel don’t represent us well. However, no matter which category you may fall into from those looking from the outside in, as an individual, you do not fit in a box, and your story deserves to be told.
So should there be room for Scott-Young at the table (or on the cover) when discussing Black women who are making strides in telling our stories on film and television? Absolutely.