There’s an art to trash television. The idiosyncrasies, the poorly veiled intervention by producers and the staged emotional outbursts are a delicate formula. Its raw and repugnant power comes with great responsibility that only few can weild. “Mexican Dynasties” appears to have all the makings of the new best-worst show on television — come on, it’s produced by Bravo. Somehow, though, this show no one wanted falls triumphantly flat of being anything noteworthy.
“Mexican Dynasties” follows three families of self-proclaimed Mexican royalty living it up to the fullest in Mexico City. The three families are the Allendes, the Bessudos and the Madrazos. They each made their fortunes in different ways: luxury cars, soft drinks and just being handsome, respectively. While they’re each different, I really couldn’t tell you which is which. The plot is simple: Rich people are weird. The Allendes have zero boundaries. Their son Adán is 27, still lives with them and spends each morning in their bed for “cuddles.” He had a beloved parrot who died, so they stuck it in the freezer for two weeks until the rest of the family got back from vacation in Istanbul. Again, rich people being weird. Occasionally, a well-placed crack about Trump’s tweets or the wall sneaks its way into their conversation, which is fun.
One of the best parts of the show is the help. Maids, cooks and the like are featured in the “interview” segments of the show to dish on the strangeness of the families. When I say “best,” it’s really telling because the servants don’t really dish all that much. Their comments amount mostly to saying the families are weird. Which we knew and could see.
There are lots of really great bad television shows. “Little Women: LA” is not only bad, but hilarious and borderline fetishized. It at least presents a moral quandary to ponder and forget about when the women start fighting. Likewise, “90 Day Fiancé” is a smorgasbord of awkwardness and cringe in the most wonderful and alarming ways. “Dance Moms” is a travesty of pure genius. The cutthroat “Lord of the Files” atmosphere that surrounds these moms, as their kids flail about to terrible music is simply a thing of beauty.
But that is not “Mexican Dynasties.” This is a show whose only aim seems to present the strangeness or general ordinariness of rich Mexicans. It’s not really exciting or fun. It’s not so strange that it makes its viewers uncomfortable, with the flair and stumbling of “Married at First Sight.” No, “Mexican Dynasties” simply is. It just exists. Not a whole lot happens in this show, which is fine. As the families announce in the opening of the show, “Americans don’t know shit about Mexico.” Which is fair. I certainly don’t. I also don’t know who this show is meant for. Are we supposed to see rich Mexicans just existing or being odd? Because if that was the aim, they’ve done it. I see these rich Mexicans. They are pretty normal, with idiosyncrasies here and there. It plays out more like “The Truman Show” than a reality show. It doesn’t make good television, but it does make a point. Mexicans and rich people are pretty normal. Nothing to see here.