Tanning with motor oil, blinding bling, and outrageous fights—TLC’s new Sunday night sensation Gypsy Sisters shows the eccentric side of the Romanichal gypsy community through the lives of four women from West Virginia. The women originally got their start on TLC’s My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding, on which one of them punched a pregnant woman in the face, another married her first cousin, and one of their 14-year-old daughters ran away to a different state to get married, all of which is apparently normal in gypsy culture. The insanity that ensues is the perfect escape from stressful everyday life.
My favorite character of the show, Mellie Stanley, is as crazy as they come. In the two episodes that have aired so far, the 23-year-old prepares for her third marriage, faces jail time for her drunken brawls in the strip club she frequents, and gets the ladies kicked out of a pink limo for acting insane (more so than usual) while blacked-out drunk. She reminds me that no matter what embarrassing place I may find myself, at least I’m not as much of a mess as her. One of the biggest dramatic points thus far is the relationship Mellie has with her older sister Nettie, who is the self-proclaimed matriarch of the group, and has raised Mellie since their mother, con-woman and former America’s Most Wanted Lottie Mae Stanley, went to jail ten years prior. Mellie can barely keep sober long enough to greet her mom when she gets released, and Nettie isn’t slow to point that out.
The other two characters, the Stanleys’ cousin Kayla and her sister-in-law Laura, offer a calmer look into the gypsy lifestyle. Although they still have their fair share of drama, their problems have a bit more normalcy than the others. They are a great counter-balance to the otherwise deranged Stanley sisters.
Overall, this show is just as interesting as it is terrifying. These four women are absolutely insane, and the fact that the show doesn’t go five minutes without someone yelling or drinking shows that perfectly. The thought that this stuff actually happens in America is terrifying, but at the same time reassuring; it makes me know that I’m going to be okay in life because I’m not them. Watch the first two episodes on TLC’s website and prepare to become obsessed with the most entertaining show on television.
Image from http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/tv/gypsy-sisters