They say money doesn’t buy happiness, and technically, they’re right. But having money probably can’t hurt either, right? At least that’s what most of us think. A lot of problems can be solved with money, but then again, a lot of problems cannot. So why are we so fascinated with watching shows about rich people? Probably because, even with all that money, they still have dramatic relationships, struggles at work, and health issues to deal with, just like the rest of us.
But we also like to see what kinds of problems having all that money can cause. For example, how do they know who is using them for their money, and who is sincere? How do they decide what mansions to buy? Which vacation to go on? Where to send their kids to school? We might laugh and say rich people have it easy, but they have to deal with the same things as everyone else. Minus things like mortgages and credit card debt of course.
We may think rich people should stop complaining, but we’re the ones that watch their shows, therefore making them even richer. Here are 10 TV shows about rich people problems that we can’t seem to get enough of.
10. The Real Housewives franchise
The Real Housewives franchise started in 2006 with The Real Housewives of Orange County. The very first cast members were a bunch of women who live in a gated community in California. Some of them had teenage children, some of them ran their own companies, and some of them were struggling with life after divorce. All things that everyone, rich or not, deals with. But as the franchise expanded to include shows about women in New York, Atlanta, and New Jersey, the story arcs became more about what people with too much money do with their time.
At least a couple of them have attempted to launch music careers, one has gone to prison for fraud, and many of them have had plastic surgery. They also spend a lot of time planning and attending various charity events and talking behind each others backs about whatever the scandal du jour happens to be.
9. The Millionaire Matchmaker
Millionaire matchmaker, Patti Stanger, only takes on clients who are millionaires. Her mission is to help men, and sometimes women, who have spent all their time making money, and now have no idea how to date. Patti is a big believer in “no sex before monogamy” and makes sure all her clients agree to this before she’ll take them on. Still, many of them break this rule which leads to her dramatically kicking them out of her office. She wants to help people who are ready to settle down, because many of the men have no problem finding dates thanks to their money, but they can’t find someone who loves them for them.
Dating isn’t hard when you have money, but how do you find someone who isn’t going to use you for what you can give them? Many of the millionaires on the show are asking that exact question, but the problem is, they are clueless about how to flirt, plan dates, and maintain a relationship. Money, like looks, can only get you so far.
8. Keeping Up With The Kardashians
Keeping Up With The Kardashians is this generations definition of rich people problems. They’re a family who is famous for being famous, and all the money they’ve made off businesses they’ve started has been due to the fact that they are famous. Do you think anyone would have bought Kim‘s book of selfies or Kylie‘s app had they not already been fans of the show? Doubt it. Still, as a family they have their issues. Kourtney is dealing with splitting from Scott, the father of her children, and Khloe can’t seem to let go of her ex-husband, Lamar.
The show is about being a family, but it’s also about promoting the members’ businesses and making more money by selling their own personal brands. People make fun of the Kardashians, but the show is in its 11th season, so obviously their daily rich people struggles are of interest to a lot of us.
7. Downton Abbey
Downton Abbey follows the fictional Crawley family and their servants as they navigate life in the post-Edwardian era. The aristocratic family is concerned with things like heirs and inheritances and perpetuating the family name. But underneath the fancy clothing, the castles, and the jewellery, there is plenty of drama. Real historical events like the sinking of the Titanic are worked into the plot, and some characters are murdered, while others die of commonplace things like childbirth and influenza.
Even though the Crawleys are rich enough to have servants and have titles like Lord and Lady, they still go through the same things as regular people. Rich people aren’t immune to illness, infidelity scandals, and financial mistakes. The Crawleys just look a lot more glamorous as they happen.
6. Gossip Girl
If rich, entitled teenagers are your TV show characters of choice, then Gossip Girl has that in spades. Blair Waldorf is the Queen Bee of her fancy private high school until her best friend/rival, Serena van der Woodsen returns from boarding school. They attend the best parties, wear the most expensive designer clothes, and generally do whatever they want because they are privileged Upper East Siders. Of course, they’re dealing with relationships, friendships, and a bunch of other far-fetched drama at all times, but they’re always doing it surrounded with visible extravagance.
While most of the characters go off the college, resident bad boy Chuck Bass starts running his father’s multi-million dollar company at the tender age of 18. Only people who are rich and have no idea what it’s like to fail would ever consider that a good idea.
Entourage follows the career of actor Vincent Chase, and his group of friends who follow him to Hollywood. As Vince starts getting higher and higher profile roles, the guys start going to bigger parties, buying more expensive cars and houses, and going on wildly extravagant vacations. Obviously the life of an actor isn’t all fun and games, but the lives of his entourage sure seem to be.
Vince may have money to burn, but he also has no concept of a budget or what it really takes to make a movie. His friends eventually manage to find jobs and start making their own money, but they’re already so accustomed to the celebrity life that their struggles aren’t really anything like what most regular people go through.
Any TV show set in the Hamptons is bound to be full of too much money, excessive snobbery, and of course scandal. But in Revenge, Emily VanCamp‘s character is more than just a young woman who wants to spend her summer by the beach. She also wants revenge on the wealthy Grayson family for ruining her father’s life. Every episode seems to include a lavish party where everyone gets dressed up in their fanciest evening gown and high heels. It also shows how far rich people will go to keep their secrets hidden.
Despite being in juvenile hall for much of her childhood, VanCamp’s character Amanda still manages to fit right in with rich people in the Hamptons. Kind of a commentary on how easy it is to seem rich as long as you have the right clothes, the right friends, and the right attitude.
3. Sex and the City
Everyone knows that living in New York City isn’t cheap. Unless you’re Carrie Bradshaw, lucky resident of a rent controlled apartment in Greenwich Village. Carrie wrote a column once a week for one newspaper and she was still able to afford a closet full of designer clothes, brunch out with her friends, fancy cocktails at the best restaurants, and of course, her legendary shoe collection.
Then there’s Charlotte who has clearly been rich all her life. Her biggest problem is whether she should sleep with a guy on the third date or the fourth. Samantha is a very successful PR exec, and Miranda is a high powered lawyer. None of them are hurting for money, and yet they still have to deal with relationship problems, health issues, and the occasional fight with each other. Just like any group of friends living in NYC, right?
2. Rich Kids of Beverly Hills
If the rich real housewives had it easy, than the rich kids of Beverly Hills have it even easier. All of the 20-somethings on the show are millionaires or billionaires because of an inheritance. Meaning, they didn’t have to work for it whatsoever. The show was inspired by the Rich Kids of Instagram hashtag that is basically just a bunch of rich kids bragging about their money and everything they own.
Some of the kids on Rich Kids of Beverly Hills actually work and make their own money, but they all had plenty of help along the way considering they never had to worry about going into debt or ending up on the street if they didn’t work a terrible minimum wage job to support themselves. But can they help that they were born into rich families? No more than the rest of us can help not being born into rich families.
The CW’s reboot of 90210 follows a bunch of rich high school students as they throw parties, wear designer clothing, and wonder what they’re going to do with their lives. Even the not-so-rich characters manage to live a life of luxury for the most part. Main character, Annie (Shenae Grimes) isn’t rich until she miraculously inherits all the money of a movie star she spent a few days with. Must be nice.
As teenagers and young adults they go through all the typical young people drama like failed relationships, drug problems, and school work responsibilities. But they still manage to go to a fancy party in every other episode, so their problems don’t seem as monumental as they’re supposed to.