The first season of "American Idol" winner Fantasia's VH1 reality show, "Fantasia For Real," was relatively lighthearted, focusing mainly on the wacky antics of her less talented freeloading brother, Teeny, and Fanny's ever-changing series of magnificent wigs. It was pleasant enough viewing, but nothing really worthy of setting the DVR. Season 2, however, has been very different.
Even if you haven't been watching Fantasia's show, most of you reading this know by now that the Idol's real life has taken more dramatic twists and turns lately than an entire staff of soap opera screenwriters could ever come up with. Since "Fantasia For Real" Season 1 wrapped, Fantasia's year-long relationship with a still-married man, Antwaun Cook, became public, after Antwaun's estranged wife implicated Fantasia in a divorce lawsuit claiming Fantasia broke up the marriage. (Fantasia still maintains that Antwaun and his soon-to-be-ex-wife were already separated when she and Antwaun met.) The media fallout from this scandal, in the days leading up to the release of Fantasia's third album Back To Me, shockingly drove Fantasia to a suicide attempt, from which she fortunately emerged unscathed--although her reputation was further sullied.
All this of course sent VH1 executives scrambling back to the editing bays for some last-minute retooling of "Fantasia For Real" Season 2. After all, more scenes of Teeny attempting to rap or Fantasia hanging out at Chuck E. Cheese just would not do--such footage would not seem, well, very "real."
So this all ramped up to last night's episode, which focused on Fantasia's infamous suicide attempt--and this was some reality TV that actually dealt with REALITY. It was downright difficult to watch, and anyone who previously assumed that Fantasia overdosed as a publicity stunt or to generate some juicy fodder for her television show was effectively chagrined after viewing this:
If this is fake, then move over, Jennifer Hudson, because this Idol is the one who really deserves an Emmy for her acting skills. And if it is real--which I believe it is--then I hope the publicizing of Fantasia's personal issues on national TV will be cathartic and helpful for 'Tasia, and will put her life back on track by holding her more accountable for her actions. This woman has a young daughter, remember. I wonder if little Zion Barrino has been watching her mommy's show...
Anyway, on next Sunday's episode of "Fantasia For Real," Fantasia will meet face-to-face with Antwaun, to confront him about his marriage and whether or not he lied to her about it during their affair. It's surely to be equally heavy stuff. Make sure to set your DVRs, people--and have a Kleenex box nearby, too.