“Assistant Madams” Is Terrible, and That’s Why I Love It

January 24, 2020

Before I get into this article, let me confess something to you guys: My favourite Nollywood movie of all time is 2011’s Blackberry Babes — a movie so objectively terrible that it inadvertently morphs into something hilarious and undeniably entertaining. I’ve seen it 12 times; 11 more times than I’ve watched any other Nollywood movie. 

So, now that you know that I’m a man with truly garbage taste, I can get into why RedTV’s new show, Assistant Madams is my latest obsession. The web series, which exists in the same flawed universe as The Men’s Club, follows the lives of “three hustling ladies who are hell-bent on living their best lives at any cost, one man at a time.”

Like a lot of people, I genuinely love good movies and TV shows — a great story, a moving score, deeply-felt performances and gorgeous cinematography — but I also have an appreciation for movies and TV shows that fall into the so-bad-it’s-good category. Basically, they fail on every level, but like a car crash, you can’t look away.

Assistant Madams fits the bill perfectly. The acting, especially from the typically luminescent Osas Ighodaro, is both wooden and over-the-top. The overdramatic score feels like it belongs on Legend of the Seeker. The writing, without spoiling anything, is laughable. The editing is staggeringly inconsistent. Honestly, I could go on, but I think you get the point. 

So, yeah, I think it’s one of the most poorly executed shows I’ve ever seen in my nearly three decades on earth. Then ask me why I’ve watched the pilot episode three times? Why did I force my co-workers to watch it too (they are now obsessed with it as well)? Why did I scream for joy when I saw that the second episode had dropped? 

It’s because, in spite of everything that the show gets painfully wrong, it’s immensely entertaining. Granted, I don’t think it’s entertaining in the way the creators were hoping — I spend most of the time laughing AT the show, not WITH it — but that’s definitely still a win in my book. That’s why two episodes in, and I already can’t get enough.

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