Title: Real Housewives of Atlanta
Who: [Season 1] NeNe Leakes, Sheree Whitfield, Lisa Wu-Hartwell, Kim Zolciak, and DeShawn Snow
[Season 2] Kandi Burruss
[Season 3] Cynthia Bailey, Phaedra Parks
When: October 7, 2008 – Currently Airing
Why We Watched:
When the reality show explosion first detonated, African-Americans were longing to see themselves in the television genre without the constraints of stereotypical behavior. All of thatwas thrown out the window upon meeting the ladies for the first time. Though all showcased their individual brand of class, RHOA quickly became popular for the shade throwing, epic arguments, and witty one liners.
In the show’s first couple of episodes, audiences got amped for the drama brewing between NeNe and Sheree. Fans came to view Kim, the lone white woman, as a gold digger because she was messing with a rich married man who bought her all that her heart desired. Kim repayed her sugar daddy aka Big Poppa by halfheartedly defending their relationship any time anyone frowned on her situation. Kim was introduced to viewers as NeNe’s friend. However, Kim and Sheree grew closer as things between Kim and NeNe ran hot and cold. Despite being the most boring of the bunch, DeShawn trying to raise a million dollars at a single fundraiser was a hilariooous piece of reality tv history. A close second place was Sheree having fashion viewing party without any fashions to display. Yes, you read that correctly.
As season two rolled around, DeShawn received her walking papers and was replaced by singer-songwriter Kandi Burruss. Kandi was one of the only ones to actually have a job and be making her own money. After a whole season of watching kept women complain about the mundane details of life, Kandi was a breath of fresh air. Her arrival threatened to take NeNe’s crown as the favorite of the show. After knowing Kandi form the R&B group Xscape, audiences were taken aback to see her snap on NeNe when NeNe went at her sideways. This was also the moment Sheree dropped the infamous line to a disrespectful event planner, “Who gon check me, boo?” Sheree must have been in a fighting mood during taping because she tried to snatch Kim’s wig off. Kandi proved how skilled she is as a producer by flipping a ired country song for the no voice having Kim to perform.
As the show became more popular, the ladies became the focus of gossip blogs. It was all about exactly how broke Sheree was, if Kandi’s relationship was a good move for, who was NeNe cheating on her husband with, and how much plastic surgery Kim had. Once season three rolled around, Kim broke up with Big Poppa, Sheree decided to become an actress, Kandi started a sex and relationship web series. The drama continued between the ladies over petty nonsense, but we were hooked so it was too late to stop watching the show. Runway model Cynthia Bailey came aboard with messiness going down between her fiancee and family. Celebrity attorney Phaedra Parks added to the eccentric factor with her misguided southern belle isms. In spite of having new characters, the women of Real Housewives of Atlanta fought, bonded, cried, and yelled at each other. The fourth season of the hit show has started and the last sentence is an applicable answer if someone asks you what’s been happening this season.
Tami Roman speaks:
Originally I liked the show. All of the women bring a certain something. Nene is outspoken and brash so we love her. They never disappoint. The drama is always there and we’re getting to see these people transform in front of our very eyes. Season 1 Nene is not Seaon 4 Nene. I think that growth and transition is a beautiful thing so I applaud the things she’s done by way of this vehicle.
In its debut season, RHOA became the highest rated show on the Bravo network. Despite most of them not being wives, people tuned in for the drama and snappy comebacks, which permeate the show.
RHOA has spawned a few spin off shows like Kim Zolciak’s new show chronicling her new life with a new husband and baby. After seeing how she turned Kim’s “Tardy For The Party” into a hit, Bravo gave her a series to work her magic on everyday people. NeNe has become a legitimate actress with guest spots on Glee and Let’s Stay Together. The acting opportunities sprang up after NeNe acted a damn fool on Te Celebrity Apprentice with Donald Trump.
–Lisa Wu-Hartwell has more children than shown. Her ex-husband, Keith Sweat, wouldn’t sign the release for them to appear.
–NeNe Leakes‘ son was arrested for stealing two $14 razors, despite having the money to pay for them.
–Kandi Burruss’ fiancee was murdered during the airing of the second season.
–Sheree Whitfield’s clothing line, She by Sheree, has never gotten off the ground even though she had a fashion show.
–Kim Zolciak has come under fire as being a racist because of the way she treated her black assistant, Sweetie.
–Phaedra Parks was Bobby Brown’s lawyer when he had legal trouble in Atlanta in the early 2000s.