Gospel duo Mary Mary debuts reality show on WEtv
In this March 22, 2012 photo, Erica Campbell, left, and her sister Tina Campbell, of the gospel group Mary Mary pose for a portrait in Atlanta. The two plan to star in a reality show based on their lives as recording artists and mothers. The Grammy-winning singers, sisters Erica and Tina Campbell, offer a glimpse into the duo's lives through their new reality show, "Mary Mary," which debuts this week on WEtv. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
ATLANTA (AP) — If you thought a Mary Mary reality show would focus on gospel songs and Bible study, think again.
There are plenty of raised voices, hurt feelings and snide comments on the gospel duo's self-titled WEtv series, which debuted this week. While the craziness doesn't rise to the level of an episode of "Basketball Wives," Erica and Tina Campbell say it's enough to show people that despite their Christian faith, they're far from perfect people.
"There is a great level of dysfunction," said Erica, who is an executive producer of "Mary Mary" with Tina. "We're real sisters. We're black sisters with egos and strong personalities. But what we do know is that our mission and message is much bigger than that."
The hour-long, 10-episode series delves into the personal lives of the Grammy-winning group as they seek to balance their own households as mothers and wives while promoting their music. Their upcoming album, "Go Get It," is expected to be released in May.
"I think people have a misconception of what a Christian is," Tina said. "I don't know, some think we buy Christian soap, or go to like Christian restaurants. Everybody thinks we're so spiritual, but that's not the case. We're gospel artists, but we make mistakes. We're normal people who praise God and everybody will get to see that on the show."
Erica was a mother of two and pregnant at the time the show was filmed; her husband Warryn is Mary Mary's producer, and they recently had a daughter. Tina has four kids with her husband Teddy, a drummer for the Ricky Minor Band, which plays nightly on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno."
The show also includes Mary Mary's parents (who have been married to each and divorced from each other three times); a sister Alana, who is engaged; another sister Goo Goo, who is the duo's stylist and feels like she's underpaid; and their manager, Mitchell Solarek.
On one episode show, friction arises when Erica brings her family to Atlanta for their Thanksgiving concert, leaving Tina feeling lonely and left out. Later in the season, the sisters argue about how to move forward as a group, leading them to seek counseling to resolve their issues.
FILE - In this Feb. 17, 2012 file photo, Erica Atkins Campbell, left, and Trecina Atkins Campbell, of gospel duo Mary Mary, arrive at the 43rd NAACP Image Awards in Los Angeles. The Grammy-winning singers, sisters Erica and Tina Campbell, offer a glimpse into the duo's lives through their new reality show, "Mary Mary," which debuts this week on WEtv. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, file)
Initially, Erica wasn't ready for the cameras to follow her on daily basis. She worried about how she would be judged when the camera caught her talking about her sister, but she eventually understood that it would be beneficial to viewers to see the good and bad of their lives.