In the first few minutes of K. Michelle: My Life, K. Michelle tries to prove how much she’s evolved from the hot head and trash talker persona that made her a standout star on Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta and breathed new life into her then fledgling music career. She does this by explaining in a confessional, “I slap less bitches. I don’t curse people out.” She goes on to declare, “I’m almost a full-fledged grownup.”
Neither statement is especially convincing and the actions that follow confirm that while K. Michelle has certainly changed in some ways – fame, success, and money – she’s definitely still willing to curse you out and ready to bum rush you if you say the wrong thing to her. No matter, though, because if K. Michelle turned into Jhené Aiko no one would be interested. K. Michelle, like NeNe Leakes, Tamar Braxton, and other breakout reality stars, thrive on contention. Without conflict, K. Michelle would be no less captivating a singer and storyteller, but as far as being a VH1 reality star goes, conflict is key.
K. Michelle: My Life provides that, only with less interesting characters we’re used to seeing K. Michelle contend with.
This includes Paris, K. Michelle’s best friend who, whom we initially met Paris during K. Michelle’s product placement like appearance on the last season of Love & Hip Hop: New York. According to a press release, they met via Twitter, which is quite modern in one respect, relatable for social media savvy adults in another, and suspicious in every other. Paris says things like, “When Paris around, it’s turn up time.” She is sort of vying to be the Shekinah to K. Michelle’s Tiny, but it’s hard to see that happening. Ever.
Then there are the others.
Jonathan, her make-up artist and “gay husband.” K. Michelle used that descriptor as a compliment (though it’s somewhat tiresome at this point), and to Jonathan’s credit, he proves himself to be one of the few friends who appear on this show not itching to stand in her light. Those two have a genuine connection, which explains why K. Michelle noted that if Jonathan were into sexually attracted to women, they’d be married by now.
Nema is described as K. Michelle’s “glamorous roommate who has New York City nightlife in the palm of her hand.” She’s a club promoter who seems to enjoy actively trashing overweight women waiting in line to get into parties she’s working. She also admits to taking pride in the following: telling people no and being a “bitch.” In between bitching people out, Nema is apartment hunting.
While having brunch with K. Michelle, Jonathan, and Paris, Nema suggests that she moves into K. Michelle’s spacious home in Jersey. Paris is instantly suspicious of why a woman over the age of 30 would be asking for a roommate. Well, that’s the NYC rental market for you, but I understand her concerns all the same. K. Michelle allows it with conditions. Great, now maybe Nema can take the time to find new ways to feel a sense of self-worth besides belittling partygoers.
As for the folks who knew K. Michelle before she blew up, there is childhood friend Tracie, who finds herself on K’s bad side after using her famous friend’s credit card. There is a confrontation – one that gives us the K. Michelle that we’re used to seeing it.
Even so, the most honest moment of the show was her interaction with her 10-year-old son, Chase, who will be on the show in a limited capacity. It’ll be interesting to see K. Michelle navigate life beyond the scope of underground, but what will really add nuance to her is watching her be a mom. That’s the K. Michelle we’re not used to seeing and it’s so far it’s the most enticing angle of this show.
The series premiere of “K. Michelle: My Life” airs on Monday, November 3 at 9:00 PM ET/ PT on VH1.