Cast Blog: #SHAHS

Recap: MJ Gets Drizzy Wit’ It

Recap: The Shahs Peace Summit

Recap: Recipe for Disaster

Asa's Profound and Cathartic Trip

Recap: Reza Pops The Big One

The Return of Lochnesa

Mike: I Will Marry Jessica Soon

Reza Dishes on His Engagement

Recap: Make a Run for the Border

Mike Shouldn't be "Scared" of Other Religions

Recap: Turkey with a Side of Apology

Mike's Inner Struggle

Lilly's Disrespectful Behavior

Mike Takes GG's Side

Recap: Outed by Chihuahuas

Reza: "Lilly Doesn't Understand Friendship"

Lilly's Battle with Foot Boogers

Recap: Always a Lady

Recap: A Little Too Much Diamond Water...

The Shah of Bull Sh--

Reza: "I Wish I Had Kept My Mouth Shut"

Ep 8: Persian Empire Divided

Will Mike Put a Ring on It?

Reza Learns the Power of Apology

Recap: Shah-etiquette

MJ Owes GG a Genuine Apology

What MJ Did was Wrong

Loch-Nesa vs. MJ

Asa's Juice Disaster

Recap: Persian Pride?

MJ's Moral Compass is Way Off

An Offer Lilly Can't Refuse?

Recap: Homo-Not-So-Genius

Mike's Disappointment with Reza

Asa: "I Definitely See Why Reza is Irritated"

Reza on the Fight: "I'm Not Proud of It"

Lilly Needs to "Get More Real"

Reza to Lilly: "Get Off Your High Horse"

Cry Me a River

Mike: Master Negotiator

Lilly: Ain't Nobody Got Time for This

Recap: MJ Gets Drizzy Wit’ It

Ep 5: Comedian Nadine Rajabi reflects on MJ's birthday and GG's phone etiquette. 

 

First off, I would like to wish everyone a Happy “almost” New Year. I’m glad we can ring in 2013 together celebrating all things Shahs.

Last week we left the episode with Reza toasting everyone except for MJ, further shaking up their twenty-something year relationship that was already rocky. Here’s what I think: The root of Reza’s problem with MJ is loyalty. Reza can’t understand how his high school bestie could side with GG, someone who has outwardly bad-mouthed Reza and treated him like s---. Honestly, I don’t blame Reza. But, I also don’t condone his behavior. He acted like a catty, mean girl last week. He should know better, and he does. Sometimes I wonder what’s underneath his mustache. . .a vagina?

Which brings me to this week. Before we get to the meat of the episode, here’s a quick recap of the little things that happened…

We see Omid and GG’s relationship developing, Reza have lunch with his mom, Mike and Reza get realtor headshots, Lilly get the brush off over the phone by her F.O.B. (fresh off the boat) boyfriend, and of course MJ’s birthday party where everyone was required to bring a datable guy in lieu of a gift.

Let’s start on a light note. Toward the top of the episode we see Lilly at dinner with one of her nearest and dearest, Raumak. We learn that their friendship runs VERY deep - they bonded over hair extensions. At dinner Lilly vents about Ali, her on-again/ off-again boyfriend of 10 years. Lilly wants Ali to move to LA so that they can be together, but the Persian Houstonian is dragging his feet. But don’t let her high fashion, pretentious exterior fool you. Lilly is a simple girl at heart. All she really wants is “to come home to somebody else’s face that she can touch, hug and kiss” … along with a Maserati, a phat house in the hills, a yacht…and Eva Longoria’s stylist for her dog. No joke, we learn that Coconut’s groomer is a stylist to the stars! Well, maybe not after this episode airs. I’m sure that Eva just loves the idea that those fingers running through her silky locks are the same that scrub the pooch’s poop chute!

Skipping ahead. . .We finally get to see pictures of the infamous Ali this episode. OMG. Is he her boyfriend or her uncle?! Did you catch when she said “on, off, single, married?” I need to pull an MJ and cyber stalk, I mean investigate this further. She needs to shake that guy! Lilly, I have to say, ”he’s just not that into you!” If he wanted to be with you, he would have gotten his ass on a flying Persian rug and flown straight to LA. Or least hit the “on” button on his laptop to do a simple Google search for houses in L.A. I love when Ali said, “I love you, I want to buy a ring for you, I want to spend my life with you…” From 1500 miles away?

Listen, I know it’s not as black and white as the show makes it look, but it looks like our swimgerie guru needs to start looking at ships coming from the old country for a new dude. Don’t like your current man? Import a new one! I feel bad for her, but girlfriend needs to move on!! Maybe she should throw herself a B.Y.O.B. (bring your own boy) party just like MJ!

Speaking of, how about the chain of events that lead up to MJ’s birthday?!?

Let’s start with the CRAZY phone call(s) between MJ and GG. I was SHOCKED when MJ called GG to tell her she wasn’t invited to her birthday party. It spoke volumes. She had to do it to repair her relationship with Reza and she did the right thing as hard as it was. Plus, she was throwing a birthday party for herself and didn’t want drama at her party. Can you blame a girl? Kudos to her for finally taking a stand and not being her typical people pleaser self.

I have to admit, when I heard MJ drop the bomb, I was like, “Oh no she di’int!” I could almost feel the smoke coming out of GG’s ears. After GG hung up on MJ the first time, MJ should have just left it alone. But she called back not once, but two more times—like a crazy ex-boyfriend/girlfriend.

The call went something like this:
MJ: Hi GG, you can’t come to my birthday party. I like you, but you’re too dramatic.
GG: (silence. . .hangs up)
(MJ calls back)
Me: MJ, dude! Don’t call back.

MJ: Did you hang up on me?
Me: MJ -- really? No -- it was a coincidental signal drop. Come on!!! Can you hear me now??? How about now?
GG: I’ve had your back this whole time. . .
Me: She’s right, her gold hoops have always stayed on around you. . .
MJ: You’ve had no consequences for everything you’ve done.
GG: MJ, MJ, MJ -- Did you say I’m not invited to your birthday (crazy eyes) F--- you (hangs up)!
Me: MJ, run while you can. She’s channeling Jack Torrance (Jack Nicolson’s character) in The Shining. What she really means is: I have a knife collection, an Audi A6 that can fit a body in the trunk, and a rich Dad. MJ, hide yo’ Julio. Hide yo’ Pablo. . .

(MJ Calls back)
Me: Don’t call back! You’re feeding the lion.
GG: What? If you want to throw me to the Rottweilers, then do it in person.
Me: In person? Are you out of your mind? I wouldn’t even Skype with her.
MJ: No, no!
(GG hangs up)

(GG kicks the blow-up punching and breaks glass.)
Me: I hope whatever she broke was from Ikea.

MJ tells us in interview that she hoped this would be a wake up call for GG. But I’m pretty sure the only ones experiencing an awakening were her neighbors in Apartment 3b.

So that’s that! GG has one supporter at this point and it’s her natural-nosed man, who wears headbands as an accessory. Yes, the same natural-nosed man who goes to MJ’s birthday.

Moving on to MJ’s famous birthday! When the guys all showed up to MJ’s apartment, I felt like I was watching a bad episode of Millionaire Matchmaker in which Tehran was the Persian Patti Stanger. The most redeeming thing about this scene is the sweet moment where we get a glimpse of the old MJ and Reza. In a sign of good things to come, Reza buries the hatchet (as much as he could in four seconds) and shows his bestie genuine love and support.

The shindig moves from MJ’s apartment to her party bus, or -- as I like to call it -- a veritable strip club on wheels. That thing was like a tricked out dump truck, and its first stop was dumping Persians off at the beach.

At the party we see a Drake look alike dressed in red pants and a vest (separately OK, that combo. . . yikes!) make a play to get MJ alone with the help of Reza and Asa. It was sweet to see MJ with a guy, but I didn’t think a guy dressed in red pants and a vest nicknamed Drizzy would be her type. I was surprised he wasn’t wearing a Mercedes-Benz emblem around his neck ala Public Enemy (without the clock). All joking aside, it was cute. I do hope there is some sort of a dating arc for MJ this season. And even if there isn’t, mission accomplished as far as getting what she wanted for her birthday: A man (even if he was dressed in red pants).

As MJ is getting Drizzy wit’ it, Asa, Reza, Sammy, Tehran and crew get into it with Omid. Omid is pissed that GG wasn’t invited. What does he expect? GG was a mess at Asa’s dinner AND at the pool party. If Omid really cared that much, he wouldn’t have gone to the party to show solidarity. But, I guess being on TV is more important for him. Asa makes a good point when she says that it’s been four weeks and GG still hasn’t contacted her. What’s she supposed to do when she’s already given GG a few chances? I’d write her off too. I’m curious to see where GG lands with the group. I read somewhere that she was engaged to Omid. So, I guess we know where the two of them land. . .

Omid aside, I’m happy that our Persian posse finally have a drama-free outing! And I’m even happier that MJ and Reza make up at the end of the episode. When Reza tells MJ that they’re not friends, they’re blood, it gave me the chills. He said something that really resonated with me, which was: in the storyboard of their life they have had so many special times, and to not love MJ is to not love those times. Tear. Reza and MJ’s bond is strong. They’re better together. Alone, MJ was unraveling at the seams and Reza was a bitchy mean girl. I’m happy our dynamic duo is back together.

Onward to next week when the Shahs go to Cabo. We all know this group can’t go ANYWHERE without drama. It’s going to be exciting!!!

Thanks for reading everyone! Happy New Year!

Thoughts? Comments? Tweet me: @NadineRajabi

Nadine Rajabi is a television producer, writer, and comedian from Los Angeles. Most importantly she's Persian, and has been her whole life.

Asa's Profound and Cathartic Trip

Asa opens up about her expereince at the Iranian border.

Thank God that I'm a captain's daughter and grew up on boats and hovercrafts and do not need anything inserted to not get sick, LOL! Reza and Golnesa are cracking me up here. Hahaha!



Yachting all day on the same waters my wonderful father sailed in his youth. Such a wonderful day hanging out with my friends. Away from the B.S. and in this beautiful place enjoying each other’s love and company. Princess Island was so relaxing and charming. Every restaurant was a seafood restaurant, and I was in heaven! When I saw the tears in Merc's eyes, I could feel that she was ready to “go there.” I am so proud of her rawness about what she wants and her needs. After all, how can we achieve something we can't even visualize or speak of? I am here for her for strength, love, and support through thick and thin. She will be a wonderful mom!


By the great power of Destiny and Will, Reza, my Mom, and I were able to find a way to make a personal pilgrimage to the border of Iran, where all of us and our ancestors were born. It was such a long, intensive, and at times dangerous journey there, but this was nothing compared to the 30 years we have been waiting to go back home.Without getting too political, I wanted to explain to those who might not fully understand our inability to safely go to Iran. The fact alone that I am a political refugee is not the only reason. While I'm a very proud Iranian and feel a great responsibility to shed light on all the wonderful things about my culture, I also feel socially obligated to be honest about the things terribly wrong with the government of Iran. Iran sadly is a tyranny and deals with political dissidents (that's anyone with an opinion) as criminals. It jails, tortures, and executes its own citizens for simple expressing a political opinion. Think about all the individuals, comedians, talk show hosts, or journalists expressing various opinions here in the US about the president or government... In the US it's called freedom of speech. Well, this freedom does not exist in Iran. The number of “political” prisoners and executions of the latter is staggering. So, somebody whose art deals even mildly with such things and is considered “Islamic Feminist” going to Iran safely is pretty much out of the question.

Back to our beautiful pilgrimage to the center of my heart. Throughout the whole day, my Mom, Reza, and I were like silent warriors. We were all dealing with our own personal emotions throughout the journey while also in the collective experience. On the flight and the bus ride, it was sheer excitement. Then on the last leg of the journey in the Kurdish car, we all lost it. Listening to our favorite old Persian song on our iPhone and nearing the Iranian border, tears of joy and sadness starting falling endlessly.

It was so incredible for me to have my Mom, who sacrificed everything in her youth to make a brighter future for me and my brother, with me. I could feel her pain and joy and see it in her eyes. Reza and I really bonded on a primal level, and I will never forget these moments we shared together. I felt that we were making this pilgrimage for all immigrants, all refugees, all displaced people in the world.Then as I got out of the car and smelled the familiar air, a feeling of complete joy and euphoria came over me. I was not sad anymore. Nor was I missing it the way I used to. I surrendered all those heavy feelings right there on that earth. As I said, when you embrace the big monster, it melts away.

We all have landmark events in our lives. This was one of mine. Going to the border of Iran with my Mom and Reza was one of the most profound and cathartic experiences of my life. I am forever grateful and enormously blessed to have been able to have this experience. And I’m thrilled that I was able to share it with you all.