Mar 24, 2013

Review of Shahs of Sunset

Bizarre! Disgusting! Incredible! These were the words heard by viewers to describe the latest episodes of Shahs of Sunset, the latest in a series of reality programs which had popped up to whet our appetites for the bizarre. I was disgusted as I watched but needed to write a review. I had been married to an Iranian some years back, had two children with him, and felt a sort of pride that I knew a little about the Persians and their customs. 

Watching the reality show was like being at one of their parties, listening to gossip, popping truffles, sipping wine, exchanging gifts; the girls were beautiful, their dresses exquisite, hair coiffed and decorated with combs and beads. They all had fathers bankrolling their expenses; one such father drew up a list of items his daughter had bought only two days earlier – it was a shocking amount. The one daughter is responsible, the other wants to know why she should go out and work. They were gorgeous girls to look at but vapid and shallow. They know how to find a man; they do not know how to engage him. But then you don’t need much to engage the other characters.

Their lives revolve around sex, clubs, fashion, food and drink, with a dark-haired Persian leader Reza Farahan to lead them in their daily pursuits for more and more fun. By the second season their reality show is in array with expletive going back and forth. Reza and the sexy and pouty MJ (Mercedes) are great characters and have known each other a long time. They fight and squeal but always make up. GG is the slim, hot-headed one in a bikini who is quick on the draw. When she loses an argument and things become heated, she asks you, “Do you want me to take this outside?” She challenges you; she makes her voice big, but she never throws the first punch.

Of course Reza has a man in his life as well. He wants it both ways; sandwiches and wine on the beach, and a man to go with to the parties. The girls will do their shopping.  Asa will do her Persian priestess thing, talk about having no money, and plan another event not many people – other than Iranians want to see.  The person I enjoyed watching the most was Veda, the mother of Mercedes, who said to her daughter that she was not marriage material and that she would put pins in her eyes before she went out with her. This mother eats her young.  All in all Shahs is an exciting watch and despite the characters’ lifestyle and behavior, you can’t stop watching.

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