TV Review: 'Beverly Hills Fabulous'

Filed under: TV

Rated IFFY for Ages 13-14

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this reality series -- which follows the staff of Elgin Charles, a Beverly Hills salon that caters to an African-American clientele -- includes some of the usual reality show drama, though content is relatively mild. Expect occasional sexual discussions, some drinking (champagne, cocktails), and cursing ("piss," "ass," "damn"; stronger words are bleeped). The Elgin Charles brand is heavily promoted throughout the show.

The good stuff

  • Messages: The series combines the gossipy community culture of the traditional African-American beauty shop with some of the high-end attitude that Beverly Hills is known for.
  • Role models: Elgin Charles is the only African-American salon owner in Beverly Hills. He['s shown giving back to the African-American community through community service. On the downside, some of the Elgin Charles Salon staff are disrespectful to clients and/or assistants.

What to watch out for

  • Violence: Cast members halfheartedly threaten to smack someone on the side of the head.
  • Sex: Occasional sexually tinged discussions, including references to pole dancing. Dating and infidelity are also referenced.
  • Language: Words like "hell," "piss, " "damn," and "ass" are audible. Curses ("s--t" and "f--k") are bleeped.
  • Consumerism: The Elgin Charles hair product brand logo is frequently visible; the product sales website information is aired between segments. High-end brands like Tiffany & Co., Maserati, and Bugatti are frequently visible. Featured celebrities include Tanika Ray and Charles' ex-wife, Jackee Harry. Featured music includes hits like "Whip My Hair" by Willow Smith.
  • Drinking, drugs, & smoking: Clients are sometimes given champagne to drink during appointments. Cocktails are visible at social events.
What's the Story?

"Beverly Hills Fabulous" revolves around the staff and clientele of Elgin Charles Hair Salon, which combines Rodeo Drive glamour with traditional African-American beauty shop culture. Lively celebrity hairstylist Elgin Charles spends his time doing hair, reaching out to the African-American community, and capitalizing on his success. But expanding his salon business and promoting his product brand aren't easy, especially when his stylists -- including the arrogant Sean Cameron, the wild and confident Lolita Goods, and newcomer Katrina Atkinson -- create lots of drama thanks to their endless gossiping and diva-like attitudes. Adding to the fray are some interesting clients, who range from TV personalities to folks looking for a high-class makeover.

Is It Any Good?

The show offers a colorful look inside Beverly Hills' only African-American-owned salon and reflects the unique characteristics of the black beauty shop culture without relying on traditional racial stereotypes. Also adding to the show's flair are the "Fabulizing" segments, which show how a specific client's hair is transformed and which are designed to look more like music videos than a reality show.

Much of the staff's conversations and over-the-top behavior seem so staged for the cameras that you have to wonder whether it's scripted. Viewers may also question when the stylists actually spend time working on clients' hair. But despite the lack of authenticity, the cast members are interesting enough to make the show somewhat entertaining.

This review of "Beverly Hills Fabulous" was written by Melissa Camacho.

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