Do we really need villains (aka should Rinna be fired?)
Remember when Housewives used to be fun? When the nastiest thing someone could be accused of was having Herman Munster shoes? Remember when women supported women by doing stints on "snatch patrol" so their friend didn't flash a bunch of strangers at a corny upstate NY casino bar?
Is anyone else getting turned off by this new ultra dark version of Housewives? I mean, now we have actual felonies, orphans and burn victims, blood money earrings, possible sex trafficking, and childhood abuse on almost every episode. Oh, and cancer (AGAIN). Not to mention coordinated bot attacks on a teenager which contained the most vile threats imaginable.
Now that Rinna has been booed at BravoCon and Kathy is officially not coming back as a direct result of her antics, how are we feeling about the villains of Housewives? Rinna herself has said that she's the MVP and that the show would be boring without her. Part of me agrees that a cast needs someone for the audience to root against. But another part of me is a bit exhausted by how freaking MEAN it's all gotten.
Watching Sutton and Crystal be picked apart down to their very bones has not been fun. It took me 2 weeks to watch the first RHSLC because I didn't really want to see Jen Shah act like she didn't just plead guilty to defrauding the elderly. And to see Meredith, whom I initially adored, fully transform into a caricature of the most insufferable, nastiest, elitist snob in the universe. Why does Lisa even want to be that woman's friend? She is, as we would say in the South, meaner than cat piss.
It really shouldn't be like this, should it? Take, for example, the most perfect cast in all of Housewives. I speak, of course, of Potomac. There are definitely a few anti-heroes on this cast. Gizelle could deliver a master class in pot stirring, but the woman does it with "reasonable shade." She never goes for the jugular. Watching her spar with the others is fun as hell, not painful. When Karen called her a "broken down whore from Hampton University" I nearly fell off my couch laughing. RHOP has the secret sauce. They bring the drama but somehow keep it light enough to be FUN.
Diana "worst casting decision in the history of Bravo" Jenkins said, "You need a new villain? Here I am." Ma'am, we have ENOUGH villains. I would argue that there is a huge difference between lovable chaos (Karen Huger, Gizelle, even Kenya knows when to stop now) and unwatchable cruelty (Rinna, EJ, Marlo). I am DELIGHTED that Vicki Gunvalson and Ramona are (mostly) off my screens. I am aware that many people think they are "great TV." For me, however, it's not fun to watch an objectively terrible person cause real pain for sport.
What do y'all think? Are people like Rinna necessary? Or are we over her and people like her? I'm guessing Andy thinks that she's crucial for ratings and that this new true crime version of Housewives is here to stay. I hope I'm wrong.