With the mission of rescuing people who are trapped in toxic relationships, TV One presents “Love Addiction,” a riveting reality series premiering at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, April 25.
Under the premise of doing a documentary on relationships, the couples’ relationship patterns are captured on camera, and once the loved one’s destructive situation is established, family and friends gather with one of three relationship experts for an intervention. Ultimately the “love addict” will have to choose: remain in the relationship and risk losing support of their loved ones, or “leave the love-gone-wrong for a life so right.”
“We all know friends or family members who almost serially seem to end up in bad relationships, or who fall under the toxic spell of a bad romance, and we wish we could help them realize how much better they deserve to be treated,” said TV One president and CEO Wonya Lucas. “This series is not only riveting and full of emotion, it also should provide some great advice for those with troubled relationships and even those who want to keep their relationships healthy.”
In the debut episode, which is a doozy, we meet 29-year-old Marcus Foy, the tall, handsome, likeable man-child of Adrienne Nixon, a devoted 50-year-old single mother who lovingly refers to her son as “Mama’s Baby.” An “aspiring musician,” Marcus loves to “beatbox” and do The Dougie. He wears saggy jeans, dyes his hair blonde and has no visible means of support, other than the network of middle-aged women in his life.
Enter Marcus’ “girlfriend” Suzi, who at age 51 is one year older than his mother. A pill-popping, hard-drinking retired Vegas showgirl, Suzi is a walking disaster who is supposedly going through a divorce. Living with Suzi in a home that is completely financed by her estranged husband, Marcus, who wistfully dreams of marrying Suzi, has basically traded in one mother for another. “Sometimes I feel like I’m the boy toy,” he laments.” Ya think?
“Marcus is amazing,” said Suzi. “He makes me feel like a 16-year-old girl sometimes.” In a state of bliss akin to being a trance, Marcus adds, “I feel like our souls are connected in a major way.”
Adrienne, of course, is livid. Not only does she describe Suzi as an “old, brokedown, sorry-ass Vegas dancer,” Adrienne wants grandchildren, which Suzi, who has had a total hysterectomy, cannot provide. “She will NOT marry my son! Over my dead body!” Mama vows.
With the two women fighting over Baby Boy, Marcus’ best friend, Jacob, is also concerned. He misses his buddy, and believes that he’s throwing his life away over an old woman. Since they are both on the same page, Jacob and Adrienne contact relationship expert Hasani Pettiford, who gives marvelous insight throughout the show, to stage an intervention and rescue Marcus from his “Love Addiction.” Will Marcus marry Suzi, or will Adrienne get “her man” back?
Watching “Love Addiction,” which re-airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m., 11 p.m. and midnight, is a bit like watching a train wreck, but I do believe that TV One has another hit on its hands.
Capitalizing on the current culinary competition trend, TV One presents “My Momma Throws Down,” premiering at 8 p.m., Friday May 4. From the makers of “Iron Chef America,” the fast-paced cooking contest, hosted by comedian and actor Ralph Harris, features “weekly face-offs between kitchen matriarchs to see who will be named the reigning queen of home cuisine.”
Each week, according to the network, two new mothers will compete head-to-head through two rounds to win cash and prizes. Backed by a “lively team of family supporters,” the mothers will demonstrate their skills in the kitchen, as they race against the clock to put their personal spin on classic dishes. A rotating panel of judges made up of celebrities and culinary experts, including James Beard and award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson, decide each week which contestant deserves the bragging rights as “Top Momma.”
Other celebrity judges during the eight-episode run include Trina and Towanda Braxton; Grammy winner Kandi Burruss of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta; comedian Loni Love; actor Rockmond Dunbar; Grammy-winning songwriter Bryan Michael Cox and boxer/actor/model Ngo Okafor.
In the premiere episode, which repeats at 11 p.m., Momma’s Thea and Marilyn put their spin on squash casserole and two other delicious side dishes. Judging the first episode will be “Soul Food” sisters Nicole Ari Parker, Malinda Williams and Vanessa Williams, who are joined by cookbook author Jessica Harris.
“At its core, ‘My Momma Throws Down’ is a true celebration of the matriarch of the family, placing her passion, skills, down-home expertise and reputation as a great cook on the line for all of America to witness,” said TV One President and CEO Wonya Lucas.
Historically, pretty, young, blonde, blue-eyed females that are reported missing have often received extensive national media coverage, while people of color who suffer the same fate rarely make headlines. On Wednesday, January 18 at 10 p.m., TV One will premiere “Find Our Missing,” a 10-episode, one-hour docu-drama created to “draw attention to and help find missing Black Americans, whose stories are largely ignored in national media coverage of missing persons.”
Hosted by Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actress S. Epatha Merkerson, who for 16 years portrayed Police Lieutenant Anita Van Buren on NBC’s “Law & Order,” “Find Our Missing” is “designed to put names and faces to people of color who have disappeared without a trace.” According to the network, each episode will tell the story of the missing person or persons, beginning with the day they vanished and the frantic searches by loved ones and investigators to find them. Viewers will then be called to action and provided with contact information for the specific police and local FBI offices handling the cases if they have any information about the missing
The premiere episode features stories of two people who vanished in 2009:
Pamela Butler, a 47 year-old Program Analyst at the Environmental Protection Agency, mysteriously disappeared from inside her Washington, D.C. home despite an elaborate security system. Her boyfriend was the last person to see her.
Hassani Campbell, a sweet five year-old boy suffering from cerebral palsy vanished from the busy Rockridge neighborhood in Oakland, California. His foster father, who was dropping Hassani off at his foster mother’s job, says he left him alone for just moments when he took Hassani’s younger sister to the front of the store. Investigators don’t believe Hassani ever made it to Rockridge that day.
“Nearly one-third of the missing in this country are Black Americans, while we make up only 12 percent of the population. Yet stories about missing people of color are rarely told in the national media,” said TV One President and CEO Wonya Lucas. ‘Find Our Missing’ will be dramatic television, but we also hope that TV One’s combined efforts on air, through digital and social media, and through partnerships will also draw attention to a critical issue and bring new information to light for the loved ones of the missing featured in this series, and for others. We hope these profiles will trigger the memory of someone who might have seen something, and feel compelled to come forward and help these families who have suffered so long.”