A FREE-SPIRITED, TATTOOED, PUNK ROCK MOM SWAPS LIVES WITH
A TRADITIONAL, BUTTONED-DOWN, SOUTHERN BAPTIST MOTHER,
ON ABC'S "WIFE SWAP"
"Aguirre/Ray" -- In this week's episode, a free-wheeling, punk rock mother of three teenagers swaps lives with a conservative, old-fashioned Southern mom, on "Wife Swap" -- the critically acclaimed, unscripted reality show that takes us into the intimate heart of the American family home, revealing the extraordinarily different ways we live -- WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 8 (10:02-11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.
Each week, from across the country, two families with very different values are chosen to take part in "Wife Swap." In a two-week challenge, the wives from these two families exchange husbands, children and lives (but not bedrooms) to discover what it's like to live a very different woman's life. It's a mind-blowing experiment that often ends up changing their lives forever.
Cristina Aguirre, 37, is a pierced and tattooed punk rock-loving mom who runs a laid-back household in Texas with her husband, Allan, 40, and their three teenage kids -- daughters Xaundelle, 18 and Saphraine, 14, and son Corin, 16. The kids have their own 'post-punk' band, while Allan runs a music marketing company from home, often inviting the goth-clad alternative musicians he promotes to live with the family. Mom isn't the only one into body art -- Dad also sports multiple tattoos and body piercings, and the kids celebrate their 16th birthdays with their first facial piercing. Cristina works full time doing word processing and refuses to clean up after her family just because she's the mom. Instead, cooking is shared by everyone in the house, as is cleaning -- if they get around to it. Cristina and Allan treat their children as equals, raising them to be open-minded individuals and directing them to home school themselves. The kids do not have curfews, and the family enjoys a close, loving relationship.
Cristina travels to the South Carolina home of 41-year-old Wendy Ray, a conservative, Southern Baptist mother of two. Though Wendy works full time, her husband, Bill, expects her to do all the cooking and cleaning and to have dinner on the table when he comes home from work. Fifteen-year-old Brittany must help her mother with the household "women's work," while 12-year-old son Dustin's only chore is to occasionally take out the trash. Mom and Dad create tension between the kids by referring to Dustin as "the good one" and labeling Brittany -- whom they call "Brat-ney" -- the "bad one." Rebellious Brittany is not allowed to date or to wear clothes that her straight-laced parents don't approve of. Punishment for teenage infractions includes writing out Bible verses a hundred times at mom Wendy's direction.
In the first week of the swap, Cristina cooks, cleans and chafes, as Bill criticizes her housekeeping skills and body art, while Wendy breaks down after visiting a punk club mosh pit and accompanying 16-year-old Corin to get his nose pierced. But in the second week of the swap, when the wives change the rules, tempers flare as Wendy invokes martial law, forcing the Aguirre kids to work with a home tutor and to change their clothes, trading punk for prep. Meanwhile, Cristina confronts a fuming Bill about relating better to Brittany, then pushes him until he erupts, when he finds out Cristina has taken Brittany for a tattoo -- which Bill doesn't realize is only temporary.
The reunion of the couples at the end of this swap produces one of the most dramatic and explosive meetings yet, as Bill can't contain his feelings about the Aguirres -- or his temper.
"Wife Swap" is an RDF Media production. It was created by Stephen Lambert and is executive-produced by Lambert and Jenny Crowther of RDF Media ("Faking It" and "Junkyard Wars") and Michael Davies of Diplomatic ("Who Wants to be a Millionaire"). Wendy Roth is the co-executive producer.