More marital drama for ‘Married to Medicine’ season six

MARRIED TO MEDICINE -- Pictured: (l-r) Simone Whitmore, Quad Webb Lunceford, Contessa Metcalfe -- (Photo by: Annette Brown)

Credit: Bravo

Credit: Bravo

MARRIED TO MEDICINE -- Pictured: (l-r) Simone Whitmore, Quad Webb Lunceford, Contessa Metcalfe -- (Photo by: Annette Brown)

Originally posted Friday, August 31, 2018 by RODNEY HO/ on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Season five of Bravo’s “Married to Medicine” was an unusually grim time for many of the couples on the show, with infidelity and divorce clouding the proceedings.

While season six appears to be more about healing and forgiveness, that isn't the case with every cast member. There has been no cast changes, with Mariah Huq back as a full-time cast member.

I talked to three of the cast members in advance of the latest season, which moves to the friendlier Sunday night time slot after spending much of season five on Friday night. It debuts on Sunday, Sept. 2 at 8 p.m.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JULY 02:  Mariah Huq attends a cocktail reception for "Queen Sugar" at Liberty Kitchen on July 2, 2016 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Josh Brasted/Getty Images for OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network)

Credit: Josh Brasted

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Credit: Josh Brasted

Mariah Huq

As an executive producer and the show’s self-proclaimed “Queen Bee,” she was the raison d’etre for the show’s existence.

She left for a time when her fellow castmates didn't want to shoot scenes with her (especially Dr. Heavenly). In an interview, she said she had medical issues that forced her off the show including a miscarriage and the death of her father.

“You have to be in a place to perform this type of job,” she said, “to hang out socially when you don’t feel like it. I was in a place I didn’t want to laugh and giggle about stuff.”

She remained an executive producer the entire time and chose to come back full time on her own.

“I was at a place where I was ready to come back,” she said, adding, “The audience ultimately made the decision.”

And the time away hasn’t softened her own grandiose vision of herself: “I’m funny, I’m fabulous and I’m fierce and feisty. I’m the same ol’ Mariah, just very upbeat and happy and ready to have a good time.”

Mariah is proud that she helped mold the cast, which has seen far less turnover than most of the “Real Housewives” and “Love and Hip Hop” shows.

And while she is sad to see some of her castmates struggle through their relationships, she said that is the glue that keeps fans stuck to the show.

“I believe in marriage,” she said. “That’s one of the things that’s near and dear to me.”

Some of her best moments are her barbs during the on-camera commentary. “I’m a journalist by trade,” she said. “I love the green screens. If I could just do green screens and narrate it, I’d do that.”

Plus, she knows that the show can open up new wounds. Events happen first in real time on camera, then they play out on the TV screen months later, then they are replayed yet again during the reunion show once the ladies hear what the others had to say behind their backs. “You end up getting mad all over again,” she said. “You forget you had already made up.”

And after last season’s grim tone, she promises season six to show “a much lighter, airier side of a few of us. It won’t be as heavy and dark as it was last year.” Plus, tensions between her and Dr. Heavenly have not necessarily abated.

“Our relationship is very rough this season,” she said, “as it has always been.”

ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 24:  Television personality Dr. Jacqueline Walters at "The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks" Viewing & Panel Discussion with Renee Elise Goldsberry, Dr. Jessica Shepherd, Dr. Jackie Walters, And Tanika Gray Valbrun By The White Dress Project at World of Coca Cola on August 24, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for The White Dress Project)

Credit: Paras Griffin

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Credit: Paras Griffin

Dr. Jackie Walters

Of all the “Married to Medicine” castmates, Dr. Jackie comes off as the most matriarchal, the woman who has been above all the cat fights and inter-relational nonsense among the other ladies.

So it was jarring last year to see her emotionally breaking down over her husband Curtis' cheating. She was on the verge of divorce but ultimately, she chose to work things out. Season six is very much about that rocky road of recovery for the couple.

“We’ve overcome so much through the years,” she said. “We have a lot to celebrate. We feel we’ve grown. We’re taking our marriage to the next level. You’ll see more balance, the blend of heartache and happiness.”

As the trailers show, Quad Webb-Lunceford's marriage with Dr. Gregory Lunceford is on the rocks and Dr. Jackie said that's the only one that appears in real danger of failing this season.

She herself learned first hand how TV magnifies issues and makes them everybody’s business, not just hers and her husband’s. “You can’t take back what you say on television,” she said. And she has to keep talking about it, in interviews, on social media and with fans at the mall. It’s tougher to heal that way, she said.

ATLANTA, GA - NOVEMBER 03:  TV personality Toya Bush-Harris attends 20th Century Fox's "The Peanuts Movie" VIP & Red Carpet Screening on November 3, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for 20th Century Fox/Allied Integrated Marketing)

Credit: Paras Griffin

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Credit: Paras Griffin

Toya Bush-Harris

She admired both Dr. Simone Whitmore and Dr. Jackie as they both dealt with serious marital issues last season.

This season, she said, with Dr. Jackie and Curtis, “you’ll see the strength, the love. Curtis stepped up this season. You’ll see it.” And with Cecil and Simone, “the great thing is they didn’t change. They still go through some rough times. They’re still arguing. But time really helps heal wounds.”

Her relationship with Dr. Eugene Harris appears to be on solid ground as they celebrate their 10th anniversary.

She remains wary of Dr. Heavenly, who can't help being judgmental and barbed with her insults. "I'd like to say we've seen a big change but I think people stay the same at the core," she said.

Quad’s problems, she said, will be tough to watch, she said. “She cries a lot,” Toya said. And it’s tough for the other husbands, too, who are reluctant to cut Dr. Gregory off.

She still loves being on the show six seasons in.

“I don’t have a reason to not love it,” she said. “I film four months out of the year. Outside of that, I get to be a mom and really focus on my family and whatever else I’d like to do.”


“Married to Medicine,” 8 p.m. Sundays, Bravo, debuting on Sept. 2