Fantasia’s Reality Show Proves There’s Another Career Option Besides Broadway For ‘Idol’ Alumni

Becky Bain | December 22, 2009 12:23 pm

Fantasia Barrino went from American Idol winner to recording artist to Grammy nominee to Broadway star to… well, not much. The tiny powerhouse once described by Simon Cowell on Idol as “without question the best contestant we’ve had in any competition” has suffered a series of setbacks since her Idol win: she almost lost her house, she developed a tumor on her vocal chords (which has since been successfully removed), and she struggled to get her GED. But perhaps the clearest indicator of the trouble she’s in is her decision to star in an upcoming reality show. The trailer alone is a reminder that winning isn’t everything.

Fantasia’s VH1 reality show Fantasia For Real premieres January 11 at 10pm, and after watching the trailer, we’re still not sure if she’ll come out the other end looking like a role model or the Being Bobby Brown edition of Whitney.

According the show’s website, the series begins with Fantasia recording a new track, “Move On Me,” for her upcoming album. And then the too-ridiculous-for-actual-scripted-sitcoms family hijinks ensue:

With six people living off her dwindling income, she needs a hit… now! Back at her sprawling North Carolina mansion is the entire Barrino clan. And when Fantasia and her manager, Brian go on the road to test her new song, Fantasia hopes that her no-nonsense Aunt Bunny will keep the homefront in order. But when her under-employed, over-confident brother, Tiny gets a brilliant idea to convert the pool house into a recording studio, all heck breaks loose.

Sounds completely genuine and lacking of any nudging from producers or writers with pre-determined story arcs in their heads. The trailer, at least, seems to promise a genuine tale of a talented artist’s all-too-real struggle.

Here’s hoping it exceeds VH1’s current standard for quality.