A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Princesses: Long Island is a reality series that contains all the expected voyeuristic entertainment one comes to expect from these types of shows, including strong sexual innuendo, catty arguing, bleeped curses, and lots of drinking and drunken behavior. It also offers a very stereotypical view of Jewish-American women, much of which appears to be played up for the cameras.
What's the story?
PRINCESSES: LONG ISLAND is a reality series centered on the lives of six twenty-something Jewish women living on Long Island. It stars Chanel \"Coco\" Omari, whose modern-orthodox Jewish family is worried that she is getting too old to find a husband. Her best friend Casey Cohen helps her deal with the pressure. Meanwhile, Ashlee White proudly flaunts what she characterizes as her \"very Jewish personality\" while she looks for a man, and Amanda Bertoncini looks forward to getting married, despite the fact that her controlling mother insists that she choose her over her fiancé. Adding to the fray is Erica Gimbel, whose reformed Jewish upbringing has opened the door to a more wild lifestyle. Rounding out the group is Joey Lauren, whose middle-class background and strong work-ethic gives her a more grounded approach to life. From coping with living at home with their parents and planning parties to struggling with failed relationships and finding the perfect husband, life for these women is never dull.
Is it any good?
From worrying about eating Kosher to looking for a doctor to marry, the series offers a voyeuristic view of the "Jewish-American princess," a term used to describe young Jewish women who are spoiled and whose privileged lifestyle makes them a bit out of touch with the rest of the world. Some of these women proudly admit to living up to these conventions, and their behavior makes them seem more like caricatures than people you can take seriously.
Like most Bravo shows of this type, there's lots of drama thanks to catty arguing, strong sexual references, and lots of drinking and drunken behavior. Many of these moments feel artificial and staged for the cameras. But the most problematic aspect of the series is that it plays up the many stereotypes that exist about the Jewish community, especially Jewish women, for the sake of entertainment.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about stereotypes in the media. TV and film producers often rely on stereotypes and generalizations. Is this necessary or appropriate? How can the media discuss cultures and other things without resorting to generalizations to do it? Can you think of any good examples of this?
How realistic do you think this series is? Do you think the cast members behave the same way when the cameras aren't rolling? What do they have to gain or lose from appearing on the series?
For kids who love reality shows
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