Sunday, January 15, 2012

Amateur Millionaires Club - Move Over Housewives

When Bravo released "The Real Housewives of Orange County" it was a huge success. The show provided a glimpse into the everyday lives of housewives who lived plush lifestyles. Some were married some were divorced (with the exception of Jo) but all experienced success in some capacity. The show experienced so much success it led to other successful spin-offs. New York and New Jersey were added to the franchise and people were questioning why there weren't any blacks on the shows. That coincidentally (or perhaps not so coincidentally) led to the inclusion of Atlanta but not without more controversy.

First there was the issue of how the Atlanta women obtained their wealth. The other housewives from previous shows for the most part were self made business women, but most of the women from the Atlanta show seemed to have gotten their wealth from their husbands who were pro sports figures or entertainers. Comments even rolled in about how all the other branches had no black housewives yet there was no all black cast for Atlanta. Kim Zolsiack remains the only non-black cast member in Atlanta.

I have to admit as a reality TV junkie I questioned Bravo's selection process to choose the Atlanta cast. Was there even a process or did they just take the easy way out? Instead of casting black women whose claim to fame was their famous husbands, why didn't Bravo seek out professional successful black women whose hard work and determination lead to a lavish lifestyle? That question has never really been answered so if you're a lover of the "Real Housewives" franchise then you have to take it how Bravo gives it.

Enter "The Amateur Millionaires Club." A new reality show set in two "chocolate cities", Houston and Atlanta; with an all black cast showcasing 10 successful men and women who allow the audience to follow their lives as they deal with the issues associated with obtaining and maintaining their wealth. I saw my first episode last night and was pleasantly surprised. Admittedly the show lacks the same polish (and maybe the budget) as Bravo's show, but it gives a better representation of successful black people. This may come as a shock to some, but there are many successful blacks who didn't gain their wealth from pro-sports, being a music star, or other not so legal means.

The fact of the matter is there is very little representation in the media of positive blacks who are self made and wealthy. The show is entertaining and stays true to the formula needed for a interesting reality show -- interesting people, conflicting personalities and of course drama. Look for The Amateur Millionaire Club on myATL (WATL channel 36) Sunday nights at 10:30pm.

Need to know more about The Amateur Millionaires Club? Click here.

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