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Diatribe Revisited: Priscilla’s Big Fat American Gypsy (Arranged) Wedding On Television.


During a long-overdue and internet-free vacation with loved ones, please enjoy several days’ worth of “Best Of …” posts from the archives … an opportunity to re-share some of the blog’s most popular posts from the last three years with readers who may not have been around at the time that they were first published.  Enjoy!

Originally published on May 5, 2012, “Diatribe: Priscilla’s Big Fat American Gypsy (Arranged) Wedding On Television” remains one of the blog’s most popular posts.

priscillaCable channel TLC, the home of intellectually stimulating drivel like Toddlers & Tiaras19 Kids and Counting and Sister Wives, is about to aim a little lower with My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding.  As the title suggests, this eight-episode series will feature the gypsy communities in our country and their weddings.  The first episode will focus on 14-year-old Priscilla whose parents have raised her according to their gypsy culture.

What this means, in part, is that it’s time for her to get married.  She’s been trained to be a good gypsy housewife and to serve her husband like her mother serves her father.  This poor girl, homeschooled by gypsy parents (why is this legal?) will be married off by her parents so that she can clean a different camper home.  The episode will include scenes from a party that her father hosted in hopes of finding a husband for his young daughter.

Wow …

1890 called and it wants its women back.  This medieval sort of lifestyle brings to mind images of damsels in distress and knights in shining armor … a time when all men were rulers and women were but servants and concubines.  I think this is really sad.  I see an entire community of people who are teaching their daughters that their only role in life is to care for a husband and be satisfied while he provides for her and his offspring.

Wow …

I understand, but don’t agree with, the concept of arranged marriages as is the practice of many religions and cultures but this seems different to me.   Will Priscilla go to the highest bidder?

While they seem like a harmless bunch and they all appear to be enjoying themselves, this feels to me like TLC’s attempt to engage viewers in the Jersey Shore/HousewivesOf/HillbillyHandfishin’ train-wreck-watching demographic and make some quick summer cash.  There’s a reason that they only ordered eight episodes.


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From → Diatribes

One Comment
  1. thehostess permalink

    I must admit…these train-wreck shows are my guilty pleasure. If you ask me in person I will deny all and turn to PBS for spite.


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