The Oxygen Network originally planned for their latest reality TV show, "Addicted to Beauty," to chronicle the daily happenings of a trendy California medical spa along with the lives of its married co-owners, a socialite (Dianne York-Goldman) and her doctor husband.
(Image of Dianne York-Goldman CEO, Changes Spa - "Addicted To Beauty" on the Oxygen Network - Oxygen Photo: Michael Lavine - All Rights Reserved).
Oxygen gave the nod for the reality show and the cameras started to roll. Unfortunately, the show hit a big snag right at the beginning.
Oxygen general manager Jason Klarman reported "Before we even got into production, they (the couple) got divorced."
Which is one of the problems of reality TV shows, as recently witnessed on TLC's Jon & Kate Plus Eight. Although unexpected, the divorce didn't sink "Beauty".
When "Beauty" premieres next month, it will shift focus from the doctor and his wife to just the newly divorced wife. Socialite Dianne York-Goldman's attempt to start a med-spa at a different location, as well as her re-entry into single life will be chronicled.
(Oxygen Network - Addicted To Beauty - Pictured: (l-r) Mel B, Ronnie M, Dr. Gilbert Lee, Dianne Y, Natasha P, Gary E, Shannyn P -Oxygen Photo: Michael Lavine - All Rights Reserved).
"You've got to roll with the punches when you're doing these shows," Klarman says. "These aren't characters; these are real people, and you always run the risk of them having lives."
There's no telling how the newly revamped show will do in the ratings but then again, controversy can be a double edged sword when it comes to reality TV shows.
(Oxygen Network - Addicted To Beauty - Pictured: Dr. Gilbert Lee, Oxygen Photo: Michael Lavine - All Rights Reserved).
In some cases controversy can add much needed heat to a reality show but in other cases it can backfire and take the show completely off the radar. Viewers may or may not react with more or less interest. Case in point? "Dog the Bounty Hunter.
In November 2007, A&E's "Dog the Bounty Hunter" drew attention when its star was caught on tape blathering racial epithets. Here, the long-term damage to the series -- now only a marginal ratings earner -- probably outstripped any momentary viewing boost associated with the controversy.
Only time will tell if viewers respond well or not to "Addicted To Beauty" and how much of an impact the recent divorce will have to the long time ratings.
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