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VH1’s newest scripted series, Daytime Divas, premieres tonight, and it is everything we were hoping it would be and more!
Inspired by Star Jones’ 2011 book Satan’s Sisters, Divas chronicles the fireworks that erupt daily between five female co-hosts of their daytime talk show “The Lunch Hour.” On screen, they are best friends with five very different points of view, but behind the scenes, they inhabit a world of power struggles, cat fights and cocktails.
“There’s so much going on!” says series co-star Camille Guaty. “There’s so much story that’s happening with these characters.” She’s not lying! The pilot episode introduces the women and the many secrets they have, which they hope won’t spill in the tabloids and on their daytime talker.
Tichina Arnold’s Mo is an ambitious and driven co-host on the Lunch Hour. She’s a stand-up comic with no edit button which gets her into trouble with Maxine, the show’s creator and lead host. Mo owns her sexuality and she apologizes to no one. When she’s not fighting for the spotlight on the show, she’s busy screwing a young member of the crew, which is probably not the best idea.
Former child star Kibby Ainsley, played by Chloe Bridges, is an out pansexual who is smart and is trying to turn her life around after rehab. Behind the scenes, the youngest and newest addition to The Lunch Hour, she has a troubled relationship with her own mother, so she sees Maxine as a mother figure and mentor.
Fiona Gubelmann plays Heather Flynn-Kellogg, a former-beauty queen and self-proclaimed spiritual guide. Though she claims to be the forgiving one, she’ll occasionally hold her moral superiority over someone’s head if it means getting a leg up.
As Nina Sandoval, Camille Guaty plays a professional, successful, former war correspondent and confident. Like her co-hosts, Nina is a gem on camera but will stand up for herself backstage even if it means fighting with the women she works with. Nina is currently figuring out the best way to hide a secret from her future-congressman husband.
Spearheading it all is Vanessa Williams, whose returns to television as veteran broadcast journalist Maxine Robinson. Maxine is The Lunch Hour’s creator and host. She is a formidable, powerful and decisive woman who fears she’s being put out to pasture.
During our viewing of the series premiere, we caught ourselves grinning through most of it, marveling at how deliciously devious and twisty the women’s lives are. The pacing is quick, switching between the different women and their storylines equally, showcasing their great performances.
The standout, however, is Vanessa Williams. She flawlessly balances the soft, caring side she displays towards Bridges’ Kibby, and masterfully transitions to the intimidating, powerful head of the show within the show.
Not since ABC’s Ugly Betty, where she played fashion magazine editor Wilhelmina Slater, has she played a role perfectly suited for her. In other words, Williams’ Maxine gives us life!
Each of the women’s respective storylines are enticing enough to hook you in and make you eagerly anticipate what’s to come. After ABC’s Mistresses and Lifetime’s Devious Maids went off the air for good, that’s left a huge void in our summer schedule, which, thankfully now has been filled by Divas.
Bottom Line: VH1’s Daytime Divas is summer’s newest guilty pleasure that is sure to become your next obsession! The show is funny, sexy, and oh, so scandalous!
Watch the first 8 minutes below and tune in for the rest, when Daytime Divas premieres tonight at 10pm on VH1.