The Housewives Extended Universe pioneered the art of middling reality television stars releasing music videos as a supplement to their procedurally generated plot lines. When her friends accused Luann De Lesseps of wielding the social capital she was afforded as a Countess like a weapon, she sang about class politics and the artifice of wealth. After her unending roulette of wigs and clip-ins left viewers confused about her real identity, Kim Zolciak Biermann asked us to “Google Me.”
You’d think that fans would expect this by now! Sadly, the HEU (Housewives Extended Universe) imploded this summer when Fiber One released a music video starring Sonja Morgan, Porsha Williams, and Melissa Gorga. (Dorinda Medley and Tamra Judge filled in the supporting roles.) The concept was a girl group that also hawked Fiber One diet bars. As the company explained in its press release:
“Fiber One™ Brownies had some work done and look better than ever! So, it only makes sense for the brand to reveal its makeover with the release of an original song and music video that is all about getting ‘work done.’
Sure! In an extensive Glamour interview, the Fiber One spokeswomen discussed their many procedures, the transitive properties of modern desirability, and their pop aspirations. Here’s Melissa Gorga on giving the gays everything they want:
“When I heard I was going to be in a music video—which, by the way, my fans have been asking me to do for years—I was very excited about it. The fans are going crazy because there’s Housewives from different franchises together, we’re singing, we’re dancing…”
Porsha Williams, who describes her bodily composition as “plastic,” approaches cosmetic surgery like a lifestyle:
“If you’ve had actual work done, surgically or not, it’s a lifestyle of living better and being guilt free.”
Melissa Gorga also revealed that she was motivated to first get cosmetic work after watching herself on television:
If I’m being brutally and totally honest, I think it was watching my first season of Housewives. When you see yourself back on TV sometimes you say, “Oh, I didn’t know I had a little lump in my nose.” As far as my breasts go, I’ve had them since I was in my 20s, so it wasn’t about that for me. My nose was definitely from suddenly going from being a housewife to being on TV and in magazines. I was like, “I never noticed that. I think if I do that little tweak, it’ll make me feel better.” And I did it and was happy with my results.
Sonja Morgan takees a different approach—she just wanted her clothes to fit!
“For me, it was sort of for convenience as well. I want my clothes to fit well, and I don’t have time to try on different sizes. So I did the CoolSculpting on my flanks so there’s not that…what do you call them?”
(Never mind that Coolsculpting’s actual benefits are still contested.) Sonja, meanwhile, allegedly turns down offers for free plastic surgery “all the time.”
Oh, I turn down stuff all the time. People are dying to do our teeth, dying to do our boobs, dying to do our hair, dying to do everything.
Porsha closes the interview with a poignant reflection on the symbiotic relationship between the Housewives and their fans.
Being on television, we carry a certain amount of responsibility to our younger fans—and to other women like me, for instance, who have just had children who are looking at a picture of me on Instagram like, “She is snatched!” It’s important for me to also post a picture with my stomach when it’s bloated to let you know that today I’m wearing the shapewear. So they don’t have the expectations on themselves and that type of pressure. It’s relieving to be as open as I am because other people who are sitting at home watching us—we don’t need them feeling bad about themselves.
While their obligation to shill “diet” brownie bars is threaded through much of this interview, I also found immense pleasure in the wack-a-doo sensibilities of the Housewives extending beyond the realm of television. What other realm of modern entertainment should they conquer next: daytime television, MSNBC, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, maybe even politics? Just imagine Sonja Morgan sitting shoulder to shoulder with Rachel Maddow. It’s the future liberals want!