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Image / Living / Culture

An ode to ‘The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ and the phenomenon of trash TV


by Sarah Finnan
15th Apr 2021

Kyle Richards / Instagram

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Rubbish, nonsense, chewing gum for the eyes as Father Ted once famously dubbed it – call it what you will, trash TV has a special place in my heart and I’m a born again believer that it has true healing properties... with a particular affinity for The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

Like most, I’ve spent the majority of the past few months going nowhere and doing nothing. Working from home, living from work – the two have come to be synonymous for me with a small desk, shoved in the corner of my bedroom, the only proof that there is actually a dichotomy between one and the other. What was once my ‘get glam’ area, now doubles as a workspace and Zoom background… I think I know which of its uses I prefer though.

Thrice daily walks (sometimes more if I’m feeling extra restless) have become the highlight of my day, with the promise of a coffee and pastry somewhere en route the only motivation to keep me going before looping back and returning to my indoor hideaway once more. A wholly unexciting existence, it would be easy to fall down a rabbit hole and get bogged down in the ‘sameness’ of life but one thing that’s helped me avoid doing so (or delayed the habit at least) is watching endless amounts of trash TV.

Offering the pure escapism that I so crave in my day to day, there comes a point – usually in the early evening time, just after the sun has retreated for the night – when the brain fog well and truly takes over and all I want to do is crawl into bed and catch up with the gals… and by ‘the gals’, I mean the real housewives of Beverly Hills, who I’ve really become quite fond of.

Stars of the hit reality show of the same name, I was put onto the series by two friends who couldn’t sing its praises highly enough. Claiming that it is exactly the type of thing I need after a long day, I can now confirm that they were absolutely right.

Thoroughly entertaining, it also requires little brain space, concentration or focus – three things I look for in any good binge watch. And yes, of course, it’s all extremely dramatic. Navigating the highs and lows of family, friendship and life in Beverly Hills, it’s a wonder the women have any energy left for filming.

Already with 10 seasons under its belt, usually the thought of committing to something so extensive would make me sweat (explains why I usually end up watching Friends reruns time and time again), but as I said before, watching RHOBH doesn’t require unwavering attention and you can dip in and out as you please. Soon to add yet another season to the line-up, the trailer for season 11 dropped during the week and it promises to bring more of the same. So get excited, my friends – I sure am. You can watch the teaser here but do at your own risk if you’re not caught up.

For anyone yet to discover the untamed beauty of the show, I recommend going all in and starting right at the beginning. Give it a few episodes to familiarise yourself with the gang and you’ll be hooked before you know it. Everything in moderation as they say, but you will want to continue watching for eight hours straight so I’d clear your schedules if I were you.

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