Blue Therapy has kept us well and truly entertained the past five weeks (Picture: YouTube)
Over the past five weeks, Blue Therapy has become a ‘guilty pleasure’ that I have absolutely no guilt about.
When I first saw the teaser trailer for the YouTube series, I knew it was a bit of me with the promise of exploring the millennial dating scene, but it actually surpassed my expectations of just how entertaining it would be.
I was already sold on the fact that it would show two Black couples lay bare the issues within their relationships and cover topics that I could potentially relate to – Black love is mostly absent on mainstream TV and so it takes actively searching for things like Blue Therapy online to feel represented.
Clearly, I’m not alone in my thinking as Blue Therapy has been watched over seven million times across five episodes with the finale set to be released this Thursday.
So what’s it all about? Created by Trend Centrl, who also helm the viral online talk series BKChat LDN, Blue Therapy quite simply goes inside the therapy sessions of two couples – Paul and Chioma; and Jamel and Deborah.
There’s a catch, of course, being that the series is scripted like many other reality shows, such as Towie or Made In Chelsea, for that extra entertainment value.
The show’s creator, Andy Amadi, has insisted that while therapist Denise is an actress, the two couples are very much dating in real life. His reassurance still hasn’t convinced many who are adamant that the whole series is fake.
However, for me personally the genuineness of the couples doesn’t matter as much because, not only have they made for engaging viewing, many of the topics presented so far are often true to life.
Blue Therapy offers a look at the cultural aspects of dating that we just don’t see on primetime TV.
For example, Jamel has been hesitant to introduce girlfriend Deborah to his family after a year of dating because he felt her ‘loudness as a Nigerian’ wouldn’t be received so well by his Ghanaian parents.
The deeper meaning of this could only be understood by those of us who are perhaps West African and are familiar with the age-old rivalry between Naijas and Ghanaians that us young ones typically laugh about – but is also sometimes very real for the older generation and extends beyond which country makes Jollof rice better.
Paul and Chioma tackle the cultural issues within their relationship (Picture: YouTube)
Denise is the therapist trying to keep it all together (Picture: YouTube)
Paul and Chioma also have their own cultural issues. Chioma is upset that Paul no longer wants to eat the Nigerian food that she cooks as he’s on a new clean eating diet with few seasoned meals. He’s also completely over her listening to Afrobeats – and Burna Boy in particular – all of this despite him being Nigerian himself.
It’s the little nuances within these exchanges about culture that, again, you don’t see on regular TV but massively appeals to the African diaspora.
I’ve also found it refreshing how Blue Therapy approaches millennial lifestyles and the ways in which this can impact relationships. Jamel spends hours ‘promoting his business’ on the Clubhouse app, seemingly more time than he’s giving to Deborah who desperately wants the latest Gucci bucket hat and to be wined and dined at plush restaurants like Novikov and Hakkassan.
Most of us probably know a Deborah and Jamel (Picture: YouTube)
A quick glimpse at a millennial Instagram feed and you’ll soon see exactly how relevant these topics are.
However, there may be more to Jamel’s distractions after a bombshell revelation in episode five suggests he may have cheated with his ex.
Even if we are not personally a Deborah or Jamel, we undoubtedly know someone who is.
Then there’s Paul – whether you’re an alpha male like him or infuriated with the way he speaks to Denise and Chioma, his mentality is bound to make you react one way or another.
Equally, it’s not all negative. We have seen sweet moments between the couples, more so with Paul and Chioma such as when they were made to stare into each other’s eyes without talking (arguing), as evidence that affection once existed or still does.
That’s the point of Blue Therapy – even if it’s not entirely real or elements are scripted – the topics are so familiar that they easily resonate with those of us who look like the couples sitting on Denise’s couch.
Ultimately, that’s something you don’t get from shows like Love Island UK, which only saw a Black couple in the finale for the first time last year.
But even without all of that, Blue Therapy is quite simply the brilliant entertainment that we all need as we gradually emerge from lockdown and anything else it offers is a bonus.
Blue Therapy is available to watch on YouTube.Credit: Original article published here.