'The Real Housewives' of Joburg, Atlanta ... and Isis?
Matthew Vice discovers that there are far more 'Real Housewives' in reality TV world than you might have thought
Until Joburg got its own version of The Real Housewives, I knew there were a whole bunch of Real Housewives out there, but I didn't realise just how many.
In the US alone there are nine versions of the show: The Real Housewives of Orange County, New York City, Atlanta, New Jersey, DC, Beverly Hills, Miami, Potomac and Dallas.
In case you're wondering, Orange County was the original show and the template for all to follow. Of the nine, only DC and Miami have wrapped up for good. The rest are still going.
Most other, less-important countries have to make do with only one version of the show each, the exceptions being Australia, which has two, The Real Housewives of Sydney and of Melbourne; and Canada, which also has two, based in Vancouver and Toronto.
The others are The Real Housewives of Athens (Greece), Cheshire (England), Auckland (New Zealand), Hungary and, lastly, our own version, Johannesburg.
WHO ARE THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF JOHANNESBURG?
• Mother and daughter Evodia and Mercy Mogase, both health freaks;
• Spa owner Brinnette Seopela;
• Miss Botswana contestant and law student Naledi Willers, the wife of Naked DJ;
• Businesswoman and aspiring singer Christall Kay; and
• Avid golfer and mother Busisiwe Ter Mors, aka Lendy.
The Real Housewives of Johannesburg started on Friday, August 3, on 1Magic (DStv channel 103) and will run every Friday at 7pm with frequent repeats during the week.
The local version is exactly what you think it is — a magazine-style peek into the lives of some glamorous local women as they drive hot cars, buy ludicrously expensive clothing and drink expensive champagne, all while you struggle to pay your medical aid and put your kids through school.
I don't get the appeal, but far be it for me to tell you what to do with your leisure time.
Then there's The Real Housewives of Isis — oh yes, I'm not kidding, this actually exists.
OK, so it's not an actual show using the format; it's a single sketch on an episode of British parody show Revolting, which shows hijab-clad women tailoring fashionable suicide vests and other terrorism-related parodies.
It has received a fair bit of flak, but it also has its defenders, who argue that in an ideal world nothing should be safe from lampooning.