Watch What Happens: Is Bravo That Bad?


Welcome back! Can you believe it is almost spring? If we are lucky spring will bring us unseasonably warm weather instead of snowstorms. As I write this, in the last week of winter, I hope my prediction comes true.

Anyway, when I am snowed in I turn to my trusty television set.  Sometimes I reach for thought provoking shows but I don’t like to lie. A lot. I don’t like to lie a lot. I usually reach for the mindless dribble that is cable television aka where reality shows thrive and strive to piss off intellectuals. My first stop is always to the channel lovingly known as Housewife Central.


Yes. Bravo. The place that lots of people love and love to hate. The place where every story can be told. A place that manages to produce more felons than any other network including HBO.

We know Bravo as Andy Cohens world. However, I remember a time when Bravo was a lot different. Different isn’t even a strong enough word. Bravo was the place where random crap went to die. Apparently, according to Wikipedia (yes, somewhere my professors from my undergraduate and graduate years are cringing) Bravo started out as a softcore porn channel. Nice to see things have come full circle.

I don’t remember that, but I do remember when Bravo showed ballet, random art-house movies or James Lipton’s Inside the Actors Studio (Ok, that has stayed around as some relic from the dark ages).  So, what exactly happened?

Why is Bravo the best place to watch bored ‘housewives’ throw wine at each other when it used to be a place to watch professional dancers perform Swan Lake?

Queer Eye for the Straight Guy happened. Not that it is a bad thing. I remember that show too. It was a show that got everyone talking. A lot of the talk was good. A show that was the traditional makeover show with more positive outcomes than most. The channel ran with that and soon we have the housewives, spin off galore and docudramas about the first year of marriage.

I make fun of Bravo, but I do enjoy the channel. The channel does make mindless dribble but every so often some good comes from it. For instance, Real Housewives have covered the Black Lives Matter movement, Autism, divorce and substance abuse. Same with other shows that include different religions such as Shahs of Sunset.

Everyone may make fun of Bravo, and there are really good reasons to do so, but the channel attempts to entertain while trying to cover what effects all of us as human beings.

Before I end this journey into randomness, I have to admit something. I started out this entry fully expecting to make fun of the channel, but after I thought about it, I see a lot of promise in this network. Under all the superficiality it tries to be part of the culture zeitgeist and get all of us talking. Is that a bad thing?

Recently the channel started running original programming. Next time I will be talking about why Girlfriends Guide to Divorce is a great next step for the channel.

Until next time, the randomness has ended. I hope you enjoyed.

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