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Drinks with Mariah Huq of Married to Medicine

by Ilana Angel

April 22, 2014 | 5:57 pm

I am a fan of Married to Medicine and I was looking forward to the return of season two. It seemed to take a long time, but it finally came back, and we were in for a few surprises. Things are different for these Atlanta women and in terms of the show, it is not what it was and we are left a surprised and disappointed after only three episodes. The major difference this season is the once Laverne and Shirley friendship of Mariah and Quad has ended, and they are enemies, which is sad.

Mariah Huq, a favorite from season one, came into LA for business last week and we met for a drink. She reads my blog, we follow each on social media, and I am a fan of her show. I have a lot to say about our chat and want to clarify this is not a biased opinion. I write about reality television, Mariah is a reality TV celebrity, and our relationship, while lovely and close, is rooted in work. I am not writing to protect a friend, simply sharing what we spoke about from my point of view.

This was my first time meeting Mariah in person. She is very petite, with long beautiful hair, gorgeous skin, and a bright smile. She was funny, smart, charming, and a little sad. We have spoken on the phone and she has always has a mischievous smile to her voice, but for this meeting it was gone. To be clear, she had just flown in and was undoubtedly tired, but the stresses of her relationships with the other women is taking a toll and she seems in a bit of disbelief things are as they are.

What some people don’t seem to know is Married to Medicine is Mariah’s baby. She came up with the concept for the show, and spent years getting it together, eventually selling it to Bravo. She is an Executive Producer of the show, as well as being listed at the concept creator. She was asked to be a cast member on the Real Housewives of Atlanta, but she was passionate about Married to Medicine and chose to stick it out and focus on her own show. It was the right decision.

Her dream was to have a show showing the lives of women married to doctors, and female doctors with families, as they all struggle to make their families work when medicine makes it so hard. That didn’t really happen. They tried, but in the end Married to Medicine is more train wreck than documentary, and they quickly became very popular. The good news is these women are all accomplished so we watch because they are smart and we like them, unlike the housewives franchise.

These are believable women who already have money and are not on reality TV to get famous. They got famous of course, but their lives are built around medicine not TV, and that keeps them above the gutter where the housewives like to roam. Mariah cares about the women on the show, brought them on for a reason, and is heartbroken by the changes in some of their relationships. She is in a tight spot in that she has been hurt personally, but needs to view things professionally.

As the Executive Producer she must make choices based on what is best for the show, even if it makes her uncomfortable, and the situation with Quad makes her uncomfortable. I have not spoken with Mariah since Quad called her a slut this week on live television, but I imagine it hurt her. That’s the thing about Mariah, her heart is broken and you can see it. She is trying to not talk too much about what is going on because that is her role as an executive, but it is killing her as a woman.

In comparison, how Quad handles herself says more about her character than Mariah’s. To go on live TV and slander the woman who gave you a job, and has a say in how long you keep that job, is stupid. I loved Quad last year because she was so fun. Her and Mariah were silly and good TV. This season Quad has changed who she was. Or perhaps she is showing who she really is now. At the end of the day there are two sides to every story, except in reality TV.

When it comes to reality television there are countless sides to every story. This week’s episode spoke of the meeting between Mariah and Quad and everyone has an opinion. I’m sure the truth lies in the mess somewhere, but if you look at Quad’s side, compared to Mariah’s side, we are clearly dealing with a child and a lady. Important to note that I was not there and I know what you all know, but after my chat with Mariah, and seeing her broken spirit, I think she was screwed.

In looking over my notes to write this blog, it turns out I wrote very little of what Mariah said, and a lot of my own thoughts. We spent a couple of hours together and it appears I forgot I was interviewing a celebrity and got caught up in Mariah. She is humble and was lovely to those who wanted to meet her. People stared, whispered about the show, and when one man was brave enough to come over and say hello, she was gracious and kind. The man was smitten and she was lovely to him.

Reality TV is not real. It is scripted and fake. It is also addictive, fascinating, and fabulous. Like a bad car wreck you can’t look away, and like cheap crack, you can’t stop using. It is just entertainment and what Married to Medicine brings to the table that other shows don’t, is that it is also personal. Nobody has been as impacted personally as Mariah. Beginning with discussions about her husband Aydin not being the biological father of her daughter, it is personal.

Mariah dealt with a lot of crap last year, and this season she is being ridiculed, humiliated, and slandered. I write about television and I see what you all see. I would remind those who are quick to judge that we have not seen what happened between Mariah and Quad. All we know is what they say, and Mariah is keeping quiet while Quad is shouting from the rooftops. I would suggest that perhaps there is more truth in silence than in screaming. That said, we will never know the truth.

Quad tells us Mariah told her she made her relevant. Not kind words to be sure, and there is no proof she said it, but if you break it down to the most basic of interpretations, Mariah put Quad on her show and therefore, in terms of her celebrity, she did make her relevant. You can spin it a million ways for a million years and there will always be truth in the statement, no matter how mean and hurtful it may be. In a business where picking sides is demanded, I am Team Mariah.

I am only sharing my opinion, which is what I do here. I really like this show, I like these women, except for Toya, and I think Mariah is getting the short end of the stick and deserves more respect from the others. She came up with a brilliant show, has a phenominal husband, beautiful kids, and has more to offer than just Married to Medicine. Time will tell if I am right or wrong, but no matter how the story unfolds, I like Mariah both on and off my television.

Not because I met her, but because I believe her. As for Quad, I invite her to talk to me also. Perhaps she will change my mind. At the end of the day it is beyond television. Mariah has left her comments on the show, while Quad has gone on live TV and called her former friend, and boss, a slut. If we are to not hate the player and simply hate the game, I would offer that perhaps Quad does not know how to properly play the game, while Mariah is not only playing, but keeping it real.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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