Pattaya Daily News

10 April 2007 :: 11:04:53 am 30909

Italian “Bride-Selecting” Reality Tv Show Meets With Mixed Reactions.

In a show which owes something to both Blind Date and Big Brother, Italian state TV is now broadcasting a reality series called "Perfect Bride", where 5 Mammas choose suitable brides from among 18 hopeful candidates for their eligible sons who will have to bear the scrutiny of their prospective mothers-in-law as they’re put through their marriage paces, during a live-in scenario. It maybe something we should try in Thailand, but within most farangs’ experience, it’s more often than not been the prospective mothers-in-law assessing the suitability of the man for their daughters!
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Of course, arranged marriages are a phenomenon that has been practiced in all cultures, worldwide, and is still practiced in India and some Arab states. It’s only relatively recently that marriage for love has become the norm.

But it’s in the genes, as they say, and Italian Mammas are reasserting their rights to oversee the choice of prospective marriage partner for their beloved sons, if only on popular TV. The show hasn’t been received benevolently by all, however, some critics have labelled it “banal”, an insult to women and eroding social changes which occurred 50 years ago.

The first episode was screened this week, a “jury” of 5 mammas, called for the purpose of the show by their first names, had the task of choosing prospective brides from up to 18 optimistic contenders. The first “round” involved interrogating the young ladies about their attitudes to marriage.

The next episode will see the mothers living in a Big Brother-style house with their potential daughters-in-law, assessing how they cope with household chores. The viewers will have the opportunity to vote off those they think are unsuitable or dislike. There are various stereotypes in operation here, first, that of the “Mamma Mia” – My Mummy – the interfering, overbearing mother-in-law whose standards are always too high and whom wives and girlfriends dread. Secondly, we have the caricature of the randy Italian bachelor, the “Mamma’s Boy”, still living at home at the age of thirty, but playing the field as far as girlfriends are concerned.

Reuters cited Mamma Teresa, as a typical mother on the show, who was looking for “a simple, intelligent, classy girl – someone who’s not too ostentatious and who knows how to take care of the family.” Mamma Teresa said she wanted “to find him his ultimate woman.”

RAI, Italian state TV, is currently considering the future of reality shows, which Claudio Petruccioli, the state broadcaster’s chairman, labelled as “unrealistic and coercive, leading inevitably to unreasonable if not degrading behaviour,” according to Reuters.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : PDN staff   Category : World News

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