A twelve-year-old Traveller boy named Jerry tells the camera that this happened “[j]ust cause they don’t like Gypsies”—and the show seems happy to leave it at that.No one on the council is interviewed, nor did the show bother to find a historian who might have been able to offer some genuine insight into the tensions over land between Travellers and non-Travellers.Worse still, the show’s chosen arbiter of all things Traveller and Roma is Thelma Madine, a dressmaker who is from neither community.

Irish traveller dating customs video

For instance, the narrator teases, “[T]he secrecy behind a Traveller communion is revealed for the first time”—but there isn’t much that’s secretive; it’s more or less a young girl in a too-big, too-ornate dress, followed by a large family party.

Or “another important Gypsy [marriage] custom is the cake-cutting”—one which, last I checked, goes for most modern weddings as well.

(The production team also betrays its own bias against the community’s way of life when a soon-to-be-bride says looking for a trailer to live in after getting married is no different than looking for a house, and a man behind the camera exclaims, “No, it’s not!

”)Moreover, there is no discussion of the broader Roma community, which remains Europe’s most hated minority.

their lifestyle will blow your mind,” proclaims the commercial for TLC’s newest show, “My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding,” which debuted in a “sneak peek” Sunday night.

(The official premiere is June 3.) A re-broadcast of the British Channel 4 show of the same name that has attracted millions of viewers and widespread media attention, the series documents the lavish weddings, as well as engagements, first communions, and other milestone events, of Irish Traveller and Roma communities.

“My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding” (a terrible, degrading title to begin with) claims to offer one-of-a-kind insight into a unique community, but it manages to achieve the opposite.

Viewers are instead offered an overly simplistic view of the cultures of Travellers and Roma—two distinct groups, though the show happily conflates them into one category—with scarcely any historical or political context about their place in the United Kingdom and Europe more broadly.

A 2006 article in the journal Comparative Economic Studies noted that the Roma’s “unemployment rate is 100 percent in some rural areas” and still high in heavily populated areas, while The Economist has reported that “West Europeans …