Uncovering Myths about Women in Reality Television: What We Learned from the Ladies of Black Ink Crew Chicago
The realm of reality television has expanded far beyond what I’m sure anyone could have imagined in the days of Real World Season 1 (over 20 years ago). Now, reality television is not just something to tune in for on a weekly basis, but it’s its own culture and industry that has commanded the attention of millions.
Much like what music videos did to quickly shift our culture and set trends, reality television is a force that everyone keeps up with to check off their lists of what’s hot in fashion, what’s current in gossip, and even quick ways to get famous with little effort (with the right amount of followers and some flat tummy tea). This makes the world of reality tv a bittersweet place; so many adore it while for others it just gets easier and easier to hate.
Of course, in an industry like this you can imagine and surely know that there are Women at the forefront collecting all the shine and getting thrown all the shade. Because of the way that social media (specifically Instagram) plays a part in the general role of the popular girls with perfect bodies and bundles, the reputations of Women in reality tv can be compared to those of strippers. It’s definitely bizarre, but true. If you look at a poppin’ stripper’s IG page alongside a poppin’ reality star’s, from the body, to the bundles, to the booking info in the bio, there’s really not much of a difference.
So, with that, the viewers are left believing that there’s nothing to these Women aside from body and being ready to pop off in front of the camera at any given moment. BUT THERE’S MORE! Thanks to the Lovely ladies of Black Ink Crew Chicago, we were able to uncover three main characteristics and details that are the exact opposite of some of the most common thoughts and beliefs (and mostly myths) that exist about Women in reality television.
Myth # 1: Women in reality television are not real friends.
The beautiful and unique thing about Black Ink Crew Chicago is it depicts a group of actual friends who were friends before the cameras. After all the mess you see on the show, the ladies keep it tight and have nothing but good things to say about one another in real life. They understand that business is business and they can keep their connections in tact and collect their coin at the same damn time.
Myth # 2: They lack actual talent.
While that may be the case for some lucky reality tv stars of other shows, it’s not everyone’s story. In our time speaking with the ladies of Black Ink Crew Chicago, we uncovered talents that aren't even shown on television. KatTat is obviously talented and is an amazing artist and tattooist, but what we heard from the others was a pleasant surprise. Dani J is an amazing stylist and is also working on a cooking empire that she calls “Pretty Girls Cook Too”. Charmaine has worked her way up the ranks at WGCI as a radio host and also has recipes under her belt. Don’t sleep!
Myth # 3: They’re all vain now that they have a taste of fame.
This definitely isn’t true for all who get a dose of the limelight. Everyone who came through Away With Words The Podcast were nothing but humble and not uppity in any way (otherwise we would have shown them the door). The ladies are truly doing what we all are; doing what they can with the opportunity they've been given. They didn’t seek out reality television fame and they’re still following their dreams. They just have a lot more to work with now, and we can’t be mad at them for that.
More than anything, the one thing we have to remember about reality television is that, while not always really real, these are real people. Anybody can look a little tainted through a lens, but until you meet and see for yourself, don’t believe the hype.