By Brenda Alexander
I knew the moment Evelyn Lozada signed on to be an official cast member of Basketball Wives again that the “work” she claimed she put in to “fix her life” with Iyanla was shot to shit. After all, why would you retreat from having your own show that depicted your life as a mom, businesswoman and future wife back to an environment that once involved you belittling your castmates and throwing a wine bottle at a coworker? After the last episode of the franchise in which she made fun of her castmate’s race with a stereotypical name, I was proven right.
On Sunday night’s show, viewers watched as Evelyn referred to CeCe Gutierrez as “Lee Lee.” Gutierrez, who is of Asian descent, was perplexed. When another cast member told her she said it to compare her to “the nail shop girl,” it was clear that the comment was racist. For a person who apparently live tweets during every episode of the show, Evelyn was mute until she posted a statement partnered with a video apology for her remarks.
The apology came too little too late. Fans had already issued a petition to get her kicked off the show. This isn’t the first. After Season 4 featured Evelyn bullying her castmates both verbally and physically- i.e. hitting someone with a clutch upside her head and lunging across the table of that said person amongst other things that happened in previous seasons – fans called for cancellation of the show. An apology wasn’t thought of until the unfortunate domestic violence incident that Evelyn experienced at the hands of her ex-husband. Afterwards, Evelyn went on a campaign of transformation. She left Basketball Wives after Season 5, where she largely cried the entire season and was shown in therapy trying to piece her life back together. She appeared on Fix My Life twice, pre and post the domestic violence incident, where she expressed remorse for her behavior and the desire to change her mean girl ways. Soon enough, she moved to LA and OWN began to document the “new” Evelyn with Living Lozada: a working mom, engaged to a new man (they have since broken up) who was rebuilding her brand and empire. The show was cancelled after two seasons and she headed back to VH1, resurfacing her old ways.
The argument between Evelyn and CeCe is not isolated. Last season, she fought weekly with Jackie Christie after inserting herself into family drama with Jackie and her eldest daughter. Despite Jackie’s pleas for her to stay out of their business, she continued, leading to an almost physical brawl between the two after Jackie retaliated and made disparaging remarks about Evelyn’s daughter.
In previous seasons, Evelyn has always operated within conflict with another. She taunted former castmate Suzie Ketcham after their friendship deteriorated and did the same to Jennifer Williams and Royce Reed. The ever evolving rift between she and Tami Roman was clear from the beginning, with Evelyn never being interested in Tami being apart of their “inner circle” as she viewed her as classless with no fashion sense. So vein. The issue however, is that Evelyn seeks out what she perceives as weaker antagonists. But, once someone hits back slightly harder, she plays victim. And boy she loves to cry.
Take the recent drama with she and Tami as an example. After Tami expressed her true feelings about what she believed to have gone on in Evelyn’s marriage, Evelyn went on a PR campaign to label Tami as a victim shamer. She posted old photos from her injuries, interview clips post the fallout, testimonials from other domestic abuse survivors and so on. Could Tami have refrained from using that situation as a weapon? Yes. But, she failed to acknowledge the years of attacks she threw Tami’s way in regards to her appearance and what she viewed as “ghetto” behavior. And unfortunately, all is fair in love and war.
For Evelyn to even resort to such a low blow with CeCe is unfathomable considering her reaction to Tami’s jab. CeCe didn’t say anything near as damaging to even provoke such an attack. Furthermore, Evelyn has been doing work to raise funds and awareness to those affected during the hurricane in Puerto Rico as she herself is a person of color. So, she should know better.
But none of this surprises me. It’s been brewing for some time and shows that she only lived life in a positive light as an attempt to do damage control for the mess she played a huge part in creating. It was never real but instead a farce. She resorted to her true self once she no longer had the cushion of an athlete’s income and sold her soul for ratings and an extension of the 5 minutes of fame she desperately attempted to hide from after the failure of her marriage and ensuing criticism that came as a result. You Evelyn, never changed. And you’re too old to continue the shits. You have children, a daughter specifically, who watches your every move and is subjected to whatever judgement targeted at her as a direct result of your antics. Give it up.