I’m an advocate for all installments in Bravo’s “Real Housewives” franchise, but the ladies of New Jersey have a special place in my heart. It was the first installment in the series that I watched regularly and I fell under its spell, transfixed by these women and their lives, fascinated by the way reality TV has become a genre of its own, entirely removed from the cinema verite of early iterations like “The Real World.”
Reality TV 2.0 presents a case study of how normal people react to a particular and sudden kind of fame. We love these women and their antics because it shines a bright light on the conundrum of modern celebrity and what it means to be “famous.” Their actions provide a mirror for the viewer to reflect. “I would never behave like that,” you’ll say as Teresa Giudice flips a table at a christening, or as Melissa Gorga indulges the adenoidal advances of her beefed up husband. Half the fun of watching is to reflect on how you’d behave in their place, and to watch the slow, careful unravelling of what was a normal life, amped up by cameras and Andy Cohen.
With that said, the ladies of the Dirty Jerz are massively entertaining and I will gladly watch every moment of their foibles, ideally in one long binge while eating Cheetos. In celebration of the fifth season of this glorious show — starting this Sunday at 8/7 C — check out the trailer above.
This post is sponsored by Bravo’s “The Real Housewives Of New Jersey,” but the author definitely considers herself a “RHONJ” addict.