This Is A Show That Might Be Offensive To Both Black And White Women

August 28, 2014: Just when you thought reality TV couldn't get any lower.

"Trapped inside of every white girl is a strong black woman ready to bust out."

What you have just read is an actual, real tag line of a new reality television show airing Lifetime.

It’s called “Girlfriend Intervention” and it’s a makeover show that revolves around four sassy black women tasked with turning a bunch of (mostly) white women – whom they refer to as BWs, short for “basic women” – from "a red hot mess" to "a bootylicous babe."

Yes, it looks as cringeworthy as it sounds.

Although there is no mention of women belonging to a particular race coming for a makeover, the fact that the show aims to reclaim the subject’s “inner strong black woman” has caused a great deal of outrage.

The details available on the show’s website also sound a little – well – out of place:

Here’s what it says:

“Many black women carry themselves with a great deal of pride, style and, most importantly, self-confidence. Where does it come from and how can it be obtained?”

“Who better to teach a woman how to get that sparkle in her eye and spring back in her step? Each week, 'Girlfriend Intervention' follows a woman whose personal space and self-esteem are in desperate need of a major makeover and a life-giving dose of diva inspiration.”

The beauticians include “beauty pro” Tracy Balan, “fashion maven” Tiffiny Dixon, “home/sanctuary guru” Nikki Chu and “soul coach” Tanisha Thomas.

And here the sneak peek:

NPR’s Linda Holmes points out how the show is offensive to not just one but all races. She wrote:

“Are you a black woman? You might find this offensive. Are you a white woman? You might find this offensive. Are you neither? You might be thinking at this point that you're lucky to be left out of the entire thing. (Be aware, though, that no one is safe. Near the end of the first episode, Thomas exaggeratedly compliments the hotness of the made-over white woman by yelling, "Muy caliente, salsa picante mucho!”)

And here’s some reaction from Twitter:

Maybe the show won't turn out as bad as it sounds, but Lifetime viewers could have simply gotten a makeover program featuring women from all racial backgrounds in the lead.

But remember this is, after all, reality television – an industry that thrives on controversy.

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