Last Monday evening while at Target with my son, I noticed that I wasn’t going to be home in time to watch one of my guilty pleasures on television, ‘Basketball Wives’. I instantly tweeted my pain of missing the dramatic “reality” program, and I received a bevy of replies. Most of them dealt with the disappointment some felt regarding the fact that I watched such a shameful show. I began to wonder why I was being judged for watching a television show that was created for entertainment purposes.
‘Basketball Wives’ follows several women, most of whom are not wives but girlfriends or exes of former or lesser known basketball stars. The women are catty, ill tempered, raw, and sometimes, out of pocket. They fight with one another, throw drinks at each other, curse, kick, and claw each chance they get. The ratchetness that takes place on the show between Royce, Evelyn, Jennifer, Tami, Susie, Meeka while being puppeteered by show producer Shaunie O’Neal, is a little much at times. But after a long day or bringing home the bacon and frying it in the pan, the entertainment value I find in the program is enough to keep me watching.
Judging me for watching ‘Basketball Wives’ is really misplaced when you think about it, and highly unfounded. There are those who like horror movies; does that mean they want to kill others and chop them up into little pieces? There are those who like to listen to Lil Wayne, but does that one does everything he says in his music? NO. So just because I watch ‘Basketball Wives’ doesn’t mean I am a ratchet and bitter ex wife looking to get paid. Unless you are going to pay my cable bill, I have the freedom to watch whatever I please.
I know the difference between fact and fiction—and I don’t believe everything I see on television is indeed the truth. The purpose of a show like this is for the ladies to cut a fool and ham it up as much as possible (or they will get cut from the show for being too boring) so there isn’t much reality I am seeing.
There are also those naysayers that say that shows like ‘Basketball Wives’ make black women look bad, and I would have to say that there is some truth to that. For those people who believe everything they see on television and attribute it to others without going out of their way to see firsthand for themselves, then yes, it probably isn’t a good look. But people that are like that already have their preconceived notions anyway about how black women act and conduct themselves anyway based on past experiences. Hopefully, if one takes a unbiased look at black women as a whole, they won’t rely on television or other media to shape their opinions.
So yes, I watch ‘Basketball Wives’ and I don’t see anything wrong with it. If you don’t like the show, then I totally understand. But don’t down those of us who do.