Fans of reality television first met Caroline Manzo on The Real Housewives of New Jersey and fell in love with her outspokenness and fierce protection of (and sometimes rivalry with) her family members. But Manzo never foresaw her fame as a reality personality. “When I got hired for Housewives, I thought, ‘I’m going to do one season and they’re going to kick my ass off because what do I have to offer?’” Fortunately, Bravo knows best and now Manzo is back, starring in her own show. Manzo’d With Children follows the matriarch, her husband Al and their three adult children Albie, Christopher and Lauren as they live their lives and face adventures like a family trip to Texas, Lauren’s wedding plans, and all three children living again in the family home.
Manzo is glad to be away from the woman-to-woman drama with her former Housewives castmates. “Because we were a cast of five women together, we had to coexist, and at times it wasn’t easy. With my family, it’s just us,” she says. “This show has a fair amount of, I’ll say ‘predicaments,’ but there’s always a resolution and we do it our way, as a family.”
Manzo’s time on RHONJ was certainly drama-filled; in the five seasons she was on the series, viewers saw table flipping, hair pulling, fights and reconciliations.
“There really was a baptism by fire with Housewives,” says Manzo. “That was my purgatory, and here I am. I made it to the pearly gates!”
Manzo’s idea of heaven is spending time with her beloved family on their new series and sharing in adventures. “My kids torture me a lot, you’ll see that. I think you’ll see a different side to me, where I fold a lot to my kids,” she admits. “And laughs. A lot of laughs.”
What’s in Caroline’s cupboard? Find out what she said when she answered our 7 Questions…
Manzo’d With Children > Bravo > Sundays at 9pm ET beginning Oct. 5 (The series premieres with back to back episodes at 9 & 9:30pm ET)
images © Robert Ascroft/Bravo