How To: Know Which Real Housewives Franchise Is Best For You

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real-housewives-sonja-and-ramonaThere are a lot of Real Housewives shows out there these days. Six to be exact, if you don't count the international spin-offs. (By the way, I'd love to see France's Les Vraies Housewives if it's available with subtitles. Somebody hook me up with a DVD.) Things can get overwhelming when it comes to choosing the right Real Housewives for you. It's a very special time in a lady's (or man's) life. You can't just turn on the TV and watch whatever's on Bravo. You should have solid, well-informed opinions when watching reality TV. For example, sure, I speak openly about watching Real Housewives of Atlanta, but I would never, NEVER watch Real Housewives of New Jersey. It's just not my thing.

So, to help all of you lost souls out there, here's my foolproof guide to finding out which Real Housewives series is best for you based on the type of excuse you'd want to give if someone caught you watching it.

Real Housewives of Atlanta – The Sports Excuse
“Oh. Hey [insert boyfriend's name]. Oh, this? Yeah.. it's Real Housewives, but look! There's Kordell Stewart!”


Real Housewives of Atlanta is full of wigs, a lot of semi-crossdressing secondary characters, and, most importantly, Nene Leakes. RHOA is good for those of you who live with a boyfriend or sports loving roommate and want to divert their attention towards the aspect of the show they'll be most interested in. Housewife Porsha Williams-Stewart is married to ex-NFL player Kordell Stewart (for now at least) and former housewife Kim Zolciak is married to current Atlanta Falcons defensive end Kroy Biermann. I speak from experience with this one– my boyfriend once watched a Kordell scene on RHOA and laughed. It works.

Real Housewives of New York – The Intellectual Excuse
“That one is an award winning journalist! She used to work extensively with Peter Jennings!”


The excuse above is referring to RHONY‘s Carole Radziwill, who actually did work with Peter Jennings and has three Emmys and Peabody award for reporting. New York's  housewives have actually done impressive stuff. Well, some of them. Along with Carole, there's Heather Thompson who runs her own clothing company. And then there's Sonja Morgan who's amazing to watch and makes her own line of Toaster Ovens… Not as intellectual, but you don't need to talk about her. Stick to Carole facts and you'll be good.

Real Housewives of Miami – The “But It's Funny” Excuse
“Her face is creepy at first. I know. But she's actually pretty hilarious!”


This one's going to be hard. Real Housewives of Miami is not a very popular franchise. I only saw it once when I woke up super early in the morning and couldn't sleep– and remember, I'm an expert, so that's saying something. You need to be someone really willing to talk your way around a few things if Miami is right for you. This Real Housewives is different in that in prominently features a cast member's mother. Marysol Patton‘s mom Elsa is on a lot of the episodes and she has a pretty… interesting looking face. The person who caught you watching will already be giving you a hard time about how ridiculous this show is, but once they see this lady it'll get worse. Tell them to just listen to her. Her accent is endearing and she's funny. Maybe they'll get hypnotized by all the shiny, plastic people too.

Real Housewives of Beverly Hills – The Name Drop Excuse
“Did you know that they are former child stars and Paris Hilton‘s aunts and that she's the ex-wife of that guy LeAnn Rimes is with now and that she was married to…”

real-housewives-beverly-of- hills

If you're good at talking people's ears off until they leave, you should watch the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. This cast contains a lot of fodder for making random celebrity connections that are otherwise useless. If you take well to this kind of stuff, study up! “Did you know there used to be one that was married to Kelsey Grammer?” “Did you know that Kyle Richards was on Little House on the Prairie?” “Did you know that Lisa Vanderpump has a spin-off and was on Dancing with the Stars?” Did the person leave the room yet? Good job!

Real Housewives of Orange County – The Sentimental Excuse
“I watched this with my aunt when I visited her two summers ago. Just wanted to see what the ladies were up to these days.”


You have an aunt that likes reality TV. We all have one, right? Personally, mine likes The Millionaire Matchmaker, but I figure someone out there has an aunt (or mom, other family member, old friend) that really likes RHOC and has since the very beginning eight seasons ago. This is the original Real Housewives, so it is totally okay that you want to watch it out of curiosity. Another good move to use here is to say something like, “Oh, I haven't watched it in years!” The fact that you can say “years” and actually mean it will really help your excuse.

Real Housewives of New Jersey – The Straight Up Guilty Pleasure I Don't Give An F Excuse
“So what? Who cares?”


If you're confident, Real Housewives of New Jersey is for you. Unless you're an actor studying up on your Jersey accent, there isn't an excuse for this one so you just have to own up to it. You like trashy reality TV and you don't care who knows it. You truly enjoy watching noted three-head haver Teresa Giudice scream and flip over tables. If you roommate/mom/significant other/cat walks in the room, you just tell it like it is. Hell, you don't even have to tell it. They'll look at the TV, then you, and you'll just keep on watching. Or buck at them. Either way works.

(Photos: Bravo)