Alex Casey dives into the second season of the least relatable show on television.
What have you been up to over the past couple of weeks? Have you been fighting the council to protect the lives of stray cats, judging Miss Rotorua, selling wine barrels barrels across the country, luxuriating at Huka Lodge and necking magnums of your own imported champagne at Osteria bar every second Wednesday night? Well then congratubloodylations, your name is Anne the Champagne Lady and you have a TV show that nobody watches except me.
It’s been two years since The Real Housewives of Auckland tottered onto our screens and I will die on my small but cosy hill arguing that Anne Batley-Burton was undoubtedly the breakout star and probably one of our greatest celebrities ever. Sure, Gilda Kirkpatrick was on Dancing With the Stars NZ for three seconds, but no other housewife has managed two seasons of a fully self-funded, spin-off reality show on Face TV (Louise Wallace is close, but not there yet).
Lucky for you, I’ve thrown myself into her world of leopard print, endless champagne flutes and Kardashian-infringing, grammatically incorrect show titles so you don’t have to. Here are the most relatable quotes from season two so far:
“I am so allergic to things myself, that’s why I don’t do any housework. Even using a sponge, next minute my skin starts to peel off.”
Anne let this golden nugg out into the wild over an opulent seafood lunch at Harbourside Bar and Grill. Very frequently, KUWCL goes rogue with a handheld camera and paces around the table while she lunches with various leaders of industry (who are often barely audible). In this instance, she was explaining to the head honchos at Living Green that she simply can’t do any cleaning because all her skin will fall off. I feel that.
“I really wanted a seven carat pink heart shaped diamond, never got more than a four unfortunately”
Spending an afternoon at The Diamond Shop, Anne attempts to help out a young friend who doesn’t know what engagement ring to buy his girlfriend. Thankfully she’s been engaged seven times, so knows her way around a diamond or two. She’s still hanging out for that seven carat, pink, heart-shaped number though, one whole carat more than the $2.5 million number that Ben Affleck bought for J.Lo. I think we can all relate.
“I took duck food down so I wouldn’t have to throw all the beautiful biscuits away”
When one travels down to Huka Lodge (NZ$2,460 a night), one must always think of the very cute ducklings that tend to populate the grounds at this time of year. But one must be conscious not to squander the sumptuous biscuits on offer, therefore one must take one’s own bespoke duck food on holiday. Ksenia from MAFSNZ relates.
“I take testosterone, and obviously it goes without saying that the Cuddly Bear does too”
First of all, Cuddly Bear is Richard, Anne’s husband. Second of all, every episode of KUWCL opens with Rachelle, the raw pharmacist, peddling a new special potion and baffling with endless jargon including “statins”, “endocrine” and “CO Q10”. In one episode, she was joined by a muscly man called Alain – who had so much testosterone that his voice was literally The Brown Note – to talk about hormone supplements. Anne revealed that taking them makes her better at giving speeches, which would be niche content if it wasn’t so damn relatable.
While we are on the topic of giving speeches…
“I always have a glass of champagne in my hand when I do a speech, otherwise I feel like my arms have been chopped off.”
Jar of hormones in one hand + glass of Champagne Jacquart in the other = a TEDx prezzo dream.
“Can we have a bottle of Mumm, please? Perfectly polished glasses I hope.”
Imagine being this confident while ordering a bottle of champagne. I don’t have to imagine, because I definitely relate.
“Cheers to probiotic deodorant.”
One of the most joyous elements of KUWCL is her endless, potentially ASA-breaching promotion of Champagne Jacquart. Every guest, every segment, every breath, is punctuated with the clinking of her perfectly polished flutes and a toast to something, anything. Cheers to probiotic deodorant. Cheers to “all the fantastic locations where we have enjoyed Shanghai Lil’s”. Cheers – ominously – to “our missing guest”. Cheers to Prince Harry, the missing ginger cat. But perhaps no toast tops this one, rounded off with her iconic laugh.
Thanks for keeping it real, Anne.