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Hello, 2011!! - Brigitte's Take on the Hottest TV of 2011


I know we're already a couple weeks into the new year, but I'd like to officially greet 2011 and all that this new year promises in pop culture. So far this January, I've been getting most of my pop culture fix from reality TV. Now, theoretically, I detest reality television. Theoretically. In practice, there's nothing better to do during winter break than watch hours of terrible, most likely at least somewhat staged drama and feel just a little bit better about the kind of person I am. Because, for all my faults, at least I've never started a physical fight with one of my friends in a public place. At least...not yet....

Teen Mom 2
We all loved Maci and Farrah...and we loved/hated/loved the drama between Amber and Gary. Will we love these new teen moms? So far, I don't think so. After just one episode, the new teen moms seem much more dysfunctional than the first batch (OK, maybe not more than Amber. She was pretty dysfunctional). So far I'm not feeling all that attached to any of the teen moms, but it's only been one episode. I'm a little sad that this series decided to follow a new set of girls from 16 and Pregnant, because I still want to know what's happening with the other teen moms. I'm sure that, with time, I'll become as attached to these new moms as I was to the old ones. Though, no one will replace Maci. I love you, Maci!

I Used to be Fat
This show actually isn't trashy at all. Three episodes in I'm totally hooked, and will be tuning in each Wednesday. This series is basically The Biggest Loser, except instead of focusing on a bunch of people it focuses on one person per episode, and each episode features a kid about to go to college who wants to lose weight and sort of start over before starting school. And instead of stretching the weight loss over an entire season (who can wait that long??) each episode chronicles that one person's entire weight loss journey. Call me sentimental, but this show has actually been low on the drama and high on the inspiration so far. Each kid really wants to change his/her life, and the looks on their faces when they realize that they are able to get in shape, start running, play a sport, eat healthy, and just take control and accomplish their goals is pretty incredible. Most of these kids are at least 100lbs overweight, and so far each has managed to lose almost 100lbs thanks to a trainer and nutrition advice, over about three months.

The thing that the three kids have had in common so far is bad parents who are either way too controlling and actually say things like "I want my daughter to be perfect" or giant pushovers who give their kids whatever they want just to "make them happy." One thing that the kids really seem to get from working with trainers and changing their lives is a feeling of independence and separation from their nutty parents, which most of us take a bit longer to get (where was my life coach when I was 18? ). I would recommend this show for sure. Next week's episode previews showed an overweight 18 year old girl whose father says that he wants her to have a fairytale romance and in order for her to get that she needs to lose weight and fit into that mold. Guess whether this wonderful father is a fatty. (Spoiler alert: he is!).

Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
I never gave Real Housewives the time of day until winter break began and I found myself at home during the day without much to occupy my time and Real Housewives marathons on Bravo. I shouldn't have judged before watching, because I LOVE this show. It's so trashy and so predictable that whenever I watch it Qualler heaves a heavy sigh and says "Well, I guess it's Angry Birds time..." (Ed. Note: It's true.) Sorry, Qualler, but there's going to be more of these housewives in our lives, at least for a little while. I imagine that eventually I'll burn out of the same plot over and over, but I'm curious to see how long that takes. (Ed. Note: We are approaching our fourth year of marriage and you have yet to get tired of Frasier, so that seems unlikely.) If you haven't seen this show (and all incarnations are about the same, I just happen to enjoy Beverly Hills the most) a bunch of rich women yell at each other. And they wear nice clothes. And they all act like they are about 20 years younger than they are. And it's great!!! Hey Andy Cohen, or any other Bravo employee: if you're reading this, how about considering a Real Housewives of the Twin Cities?? I'd definitely be at casting. I'm not technically a housewife, but I can yell! And I have small dogs! And I don't usually get along with women as well as I get along with men, because I find that they're often jealous of me...and I'm not afraid to be me! Etc. Think about it, Andy!
Anyway, one of the real housewives of Beverly Hills is Camille Grammer, wife (well, now former wife?) of Kelsey Grammer. If you're familiar with this blog, you know how much I love Frasier. And Camille is pretty terrible. This has been a bit of a problem for me, because it actually gets in the way of my enjoyment of Frasier just a little bit. I don't like to think about Frasier as someone who would marry someone like Camille, have two children with her, and then just announce that their marriage is over (I know, Kelsey Grammer is not Frasier, he's an actor portraying a character, and I realize that my grip on reality is a little shaky, but I blame reality TV for blurring that line between real and fiction). One very strange thing about reality TV is that news of what happens to the characters breaks in real time, even though the episode that deals with that news doesn't air until long after. Tonight's episode of Real Housewives finally brings up the "plot twist?" of Camille and Kelsey's ending marriage, long after we all knew it was coming (or, it came?).

Jersey Shore
Ugh. Speaking of the same plot over and over. However, I don't feel like I can talk about MTV or trashy TV in general without mentioning this, the show whose third season premiere was the highest rated thing that ever aired on MTV. Ever. It's a lot like the Real Housewives, if the Real Housewives skipped any sort of plot and went right to the drinking and the fighting. And drink and fight they do! I've only seen the first episode and I really don't know if I can stomach any more. However, if it's on, and I'm around, and there's nothing better on Bravo...I'll probably watch it. One difference this season is that Sammi and Ronnie are now the clear villains in the house, which I sort of love. Bring it on!

Hooray for 2011!! How far we've come.

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  1. Blogger qualler | 10:45 AM |  

    Man, Andy Cohen should not be allowed to be on television. He is one of the most annoying people on the planet.

  2. Blogger chris | 2:30 PM |  

    Haha I love the choice and placement of that Andy Cohen picture. It's as if he's reacting to your pitch for a Real Housewives of the Twin Cities! Brilliant!

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