Legendary talk show host Maury Povich is celebrating being number one for the last 12 weeks -- thanks to Oprah Winfrey. Embarking on his 14th season of "Maury," he knows real drama -- and that's the exact reason Povich is no fan of "Jersey Shore" or "The Real Housewives."
“I know my stuff is real. It’s not set up. It's not scripted,” Povich tells me, scratching his head when asked about "The Real Housewives." “They rehearse these things on those reality shows. I shouldn’t say a lot about 'The Real housewives' because they are on Bravo which is owned by NBC which owns my show.”
However, following the suicide of "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" husband, Russell Armstrong, Maury remembers how a death of a person who appeared on "The Jenny Jones Show" changed his own show forever.
“I think every talk show got a real straightening when the 'Jenny Jones' incident happened,” Maury tells me on the set of "New York Live." “We all wanted to be very real and have follow up care. And we are not just going to bring them on the show, exploit them and let them go back home.”
It’s too early to tell if Armstrong’s suicide will have any real impact on reality TV. But several cast members from the "Housewives" franchise tell me that no professional help has ever been available to them, no matter how big their problems may be.
Hopefully Armstrong’s suicide will act as a wake up call to reality TV the same way the "Jenny Jones" incident did for the talk show arena. It’s all too easy to forget these are real people.
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