There’s no better way to spend a Sunday than by curling up on your sofa in front of your television, and that’s exactly what I dedicated my Halloween weekend to. My Netflix series of choice? Dubai Bling, the streaming platform’s new Arabic docu-soap that follows the glamorous lives of the city’s ultra-rich. Starring socialites, entrepreneurs, billionaire widows, and social media influencers, the eight-episode reality series premiered on Oct. 27 and it’s exactly the kind of trash television I bargained for.
In addition to the extremely cringe-inducing moments — like Lojain Omran, Zeina Khoury, and Safa Siddiqui smashing plates while shouting out the things they want to release and DJ Bliss’s visit to the plastic surgeon’s office to inquire about a six-pack surgery — to the overly-scripted drama, including the cat fight between DJ Bliss’s wife Danya Mohammed and the Queen of Versace (Zeina) at the latter’s office, Dubai Bling is definitely not going to win any awards but it is the mindless entertainment and escapism I needed amid all of the turmoil surrounding us. Of course, there are other spicy storylines: Safa’s desire to expand her home while her husband Fahad is pressuring her to expand their family; Lojain’s quest to reunite the other Loujain Adada (LJ) with her estranged mother; Farhana Bodi’s beef with LJ over Photoshopped text messages; and Kris Fade and Brianna Ramirez’s wedding.
Throughout the series, cast-members pull up to lunch dates in flashy sports cars, attend glamorous parties wearing head-to-toe designer, travel to-and-fro in private jets, and give us plenty of memorable quotes, including founder of Forever Rose Ebraheem Al Samadi’s quip: “That’s my croissant, while you’re working on a salary!”
Sure, it’s nowhere close to an accurate depiction of what life is like in Dubai to most of the four million residents that call the metropolis home, and it’s truly a shame to think that some people will watch it and think it’s a true representation of Dubai, but if you go into it thinking of it as the female version of The WWE (read: fake), you will be able to make it through the eight episodes, which had enough senseless drama to keep me hooked until the very end.
Below, all the thoughts I had while binge-watching the first season of Dubai Bling.
- Safa has a sea-facing villa on the Palm Jumeirah with five bedrooms, with one of the rooms serving as her personal walk-in closet and she’s upset that her home isn’t spacious enough? These are the kind of problems I wish I had.
- So, LJ married a 57-year-old billionaire when she was 21, only for him to die six years later and leave her with millions in the bank. I honestly didn’t think this actually happened to people in real life.
- I kind of feel bad for Farhana. Creating content is her job and Dubai is FULL of influencers. Plus, it’s a reality show— of course there’s going to be sponsorships. That outfit she’s wearing is her only real crime.
- Ebraheem Al Samadi sure does love to gossip for someone who says they don’t like drama. The fact that he just walked out of a dinner to snitch about a conversation, word for word, bar for bar, that he was fully involved in is the kind of mess I live for.
- Wait, did Safa actually just walk into Bulgari and drop almost three million dollars on a necklace because she had a small disagreement with her husband? Fahad, blink twice if you need help.
- Lojain Omran is so sweet and wholesome. I love how nurturing she is to everyone around her. Unproblematic queen.
- Honestly, marrying a rich older man doesn’t sound so bad right now.
- Get you a husband that will dedicate a song to you on Valentine’s Day like DJ Bliss.
- Is that Shaggy?
- Why do they keep calling Bumble “Bumblebee?”
- Hey, it’s DJ Khaled’s cousin!
- Whoever bought the house next to Safa and Fahad that they wanted to purchase and link to their home with an underground tunnel for 90 million needs to be cast in the next season.
- Fadie (DJ Khaled’s cousin) should have just accepted LJ’s (a widow with two daughters) rejection with grace instead of talking about how “it’s a privilege for her… she’s the one with two kids, there’s a lot of fish in the sea.” Just take the L and go.
- I can’t believe Ebraheem told Zeina “you’re not my employee, but maybe one day you will be” during a disagreement and then proceeds to barge into her office and offer to buy the company she works at. Mess!
- Danya said she placed her coffee cup on Zeina’s desk because she couldn’t find a trash can but why couldn’t she just hold on to it until she found a bin on her way out? Also, it looked like Zeina tried to swat away the cup and Danya took that as an opportunity to throw coffee on her. I’m genuinely just confused how Danya became the victim in this whole scenario when she inserted herself in a problem that had nothing to do with her to begin with.
- I’m sorry, but this looks like the LAMEST bachelor party ever. Kris, get new friends I’m begging you.
- Why is Danya always dressed like she’s part of the British royal family?
- OK, Kris and Brianna’s wedding followed by Safa’s pregnancy announcement really got me in my feels— good way to end the season TBH.
- My biggest takeaway? I should have moved to Dubai with $300 and a dream.