Debuting in March of 2013, Bravo reality series “Married to Medicine“ was initially poised to distinguish itself from some of the preexisting drama-filled reality shows on the air by showcasing a professional group of women either whom are in the medical field themselves or married to someone who is.
But, as par for the Reality TV course, almost as soon as the show began airing tensions between the “elite” cast members (possibly fueled by forced or scripted provocative interaction) quickly grew to explosive proportions, finding the otherwise socially-well-adjusted group embroiled in the backbiting, hair pulling and drink throwing that has earned similar shows their questionable reputations.
As the vicious bickering commenced, “friendships” began fracturing, and a complicated web of cast members against cast members was created. From there, the first fists flew when now-departed-original-cast-member Mariah Huq (also one of the show’s producers) got into a knock-down, drag-out brawl with Toya Bush-Harris at a birthday gathering for two of the husbands. And there was no turning back from there. Despite the chorus of public disgust regarding such antics, the drama boosted the show’s popularity and to Bravo’s good pleasure the ratings followed suit.
The precedent was set and Married to Medicine pretty much followed that chaotic path through to the currently airing season 3. The producers attempt to intersperse the showcasing of notable accomplishments, championing of worthy causes and strained attempts at real “sisterhood” to take the edge off, but the overall tone is what we’ve come to expect from such shows.
MTM’s inaugural cast included Huq (Dr. Aydin Huq), Kari Wells (Dr. Duncan Wells), Toya Bush-Harris (Dr. Eugene Harris), Quad Webb-Lunceford (Dr. Gregory Lunceford), Dr. Jacqueline Walters (Curtis Walters), Dr. Simone Whitmore (Cecil Whitmore) and Heavenly Kimes (Dr. Damon Kimes) as a recurring guest. Seasons 2 and 3 found Mariah and Kari reduced to “friend” and “guest” respectively, with the outspoken Heavenly joining as a main cast member along with successful entrepreneur Lisa Nicole Cloud (Dr. Darren Naugles).
And speaking of Cloud, she came on board not only as an extraordinarily successful and respected business woman, but as a possible “uniter,” given her platform of empowering women. She founded Women’s Empowerment Network (WEN ™), a philanthropic endeavor to help women grow personally, professionally and financially.
But if you’ve been watching lately, things have turned out a little differently for the proud wife and mother of two.
The Back Story
Again as reality show protocol would have it, Lisa finds herself in the midst of season 3’s airing with out-of-character drama surrounding her relationship with cast member Quad. The situation has taken the spotlight off her accomplishments and has cast an unflattering light on both her professional and private life.
Once considered a “friend” of Quad’s, the two decided to explore connecting on a business level, but the endeavor came to a screeching halt when Quad discovered that Lisa performed a background check on her. Quad was “hurt” by Lisa’s actions, not understanding how a “friend” could justify such an action, then decided to retaliate by hiring a private investigator to dig up any dirt that could be found on Lisa. Her hired P.I. discovered that Lisa had a past domestic violence charge against her and her physician husband had possibly fathered a child outside their marriage. Those finding gave Quad the ammo she felt she needed to “teach Lisa a lesson” about friendship and war.
When the two ladies met to discuss the messy dynamics of their fallout, Quad gloatingly revealed her findings, which raised the hair on Lisa’s neck – to the point of her throwing a drink in Quad’s face. A confusing scuffle ensued, leading to Quad being injured by flying glass.
The footage seems to be skewed in the direction of Lisa running afoul of the friendship AND initiating the brawl, but is that what really happened?
Lisa’s Side of the Story
Lisa reached out to EURweb.com to set the record straight by telling her side of the story minus the Reality TV editing.
Gerald Radford: Obviously, you are not pleased with how the recent episodes of MTM have portrayed the events surrounding your relationship with Quad – among other things. Can you speak first to whether or not you two were really friends?
Lisa Nicole Cloud: I would say that Quad and I were more of acquaintances. We knew each other for about two months before we started filming and because I knew her probably a little bit more than I knew the other cast members, she was the one that was my friend on the show. And so, I hate to see what’s happened with Quad and I because I really, really never intended for a background check to create so much negativity and controversy. It was merely and act of business protocol and doing my due diligence.
GR: So, the background check caused the bow to break, but for you, friendship aside, it was a necessary component of you two doing business together? Give me a little insight on that.
LNC: It wasn’t that Quad and I were going into business per se together … I mean, what I have invested or was I thinking about it? Sure. Quad was looking for investors and her investors from the second season were no longer there. Would I have been willing to invest? Sure, because I thought ‘I have clothing, high-end couture clothing for people and she had high-end couture clothing for dogs…’ There was good synergy there, but we also are in the business of Reality TV, too, and it was important for me in preparation for some of our final seasons, at the end of our season to know my cast mates.
So, it was strictly a business decision, it was not personal and I did tell Quad that I did the background check and she just really took offense. And once she took offense, I apologized on camera and off camera and I think it’s important for viewers to realize that you don’t always see every interaction that happens; you get a short snippet of our lives when it gets to the edit room floor. And so I did apologize to her many times. I tried to – even before the season started – to resolve this misunderstanding because my intent was never to be malice, my intent was never to put her business out there. Even to this day with all the things that she’s said about me and all the negativity that she continues to put out there, I still have not said one thing that’s in her background.
GR: Quad felt like she was both teaching a lesson and retaliating by digging into your personal life. Can you see her perspective at all or do you feel she was simply in the wrong?
LNC: Honestly, I think hurt people hurt people. I think that there are some things that happened in Quad’s life, especially over this last year, she lost her father, obviously she’s got some things that she and Greg are trying to work through as far as having a baby and being on the same page about that, and you know there are other things that she may be dealing with. I just think that sometimes when people are hurt themselves they feel like hurting other people is gonna somehow relieve their pain, and it just doesn’t. I never said what was in her background and I never tried to maliciously hurt her and even today, even if I did disclose what was in her background, it wouldn’t make me feel good. It wouldn’t make me feel any better about anything that’s happened … so, I just don’t see the point of it and I’m gonna just choose to take the high road.
GR: Do you feel like she was playing to the cameras with her overall response to the background check?
LNC: Of course. You have to remember who we’re talking about. Quad is the drama queen on the show. Quad is 100% OK being the villain and so every season she builds her story lines around controversy. She typically chooses a cast member that people would not expect her to have conflict with. So, last season it was Mariah and of course that was a big shocker to everybody. This season it’s me and that’s a big shocker to everybody coming into the season. This is how she likes to stay relevant, the negativity, the drama and the conflict. I personally don’t like being relevant with negativity and story lines full of drama. I prefer focusing on things like what I do with the Women’s Empowerment Network as an entrepreneur, what I do in philanthropy, teaching, helping others with our medical missions, those are the things I like to focus my energy and attention on.
GR: When the conversation meant to smooth things over turned physical at the restaurant, was the scene just as it was shown during the episode?
LNC: That scene was definitely manipulated. It did not show everything that she said. You know Quad had people who were stealing things from my office, she had ex-employees who had taken files when they left and given her information. Quad also had people that were still currently on my team … that’s why on the next episode you saw me really having a meeting like ‘who’s leaking information out of my office?’ Of course she put out the lie about my husband having an illegitimate child; my husband has no children outside of my marriage, that was a bold faced lie. There was a girl when he was in college who claimed that she got pregnant by him, but when he took the paternity test, it came back negative and that was 20 years before he and I ever even started dating. But the way it plays out on the TV show, it seems like some woman while we were dating claimed he got her pregnant, so that was manipulated. And as far as the physical altercation, there were some punches that were thrown. If you look at the episode, you’ll see me fall, but you can’t quite figure out why I fell, but I fell because a punch was thrown and I ducked to miss it and my shoe got caught in the decking and then at that point I just kind of blacked out, and when I came back up it was like self-defense. And so, those are the pieces that you missed.
GR: How did you feel during the altercation and once you watched it back?
LNC: I was devastated. I was like, ‘oh my God, I can’t believe this happened!’ I haven’t had an altercation fighting with someone since I was a little girl on the playground. I don’t fight; it’s not who I am. I may have strong disagreements, I may have an argument, but I don’t get physical like that. So, I was devastated.
So, not only did I let my buttons get pushed like that, but I was also devastated due to the thousands of people that I mentor and that I’ve been an inspiration to, that they saw me act like that. But I will just say that there are some things that are no-fly zones and when we signed up to do Reality TV, we, as the women on the show, we are the ones who are under contract, not our families, not our husbands, not our children and when you start attacking my husband and making up lies just for the sake of a storyline, I go into protective mode. But after that episode, after that incident in the strip club, I realize that the producers were really coming for me this season. They kind of thought I was too clean in my first season, so they wanted to dirty me up a little bit and try to make me a little more relatable and not so perfect.
GR: Are you and Quad in communication today and If you had the entire situation to do all over again, would you do anything differently?
LNC: We are not in contact. We have had contact, but its very superficial; it’s definitely just being cordial with one another. If I had to do it all over again, I think I probably would have had a conversation with her before I did the background check. I’m not gonna say I wouldn’t have done it, because it’s a business protocol. I’ve been in business long enough to know that when you are considering any kind of business interaction with someone, and keep in mind I was giving quad a lot of my sources, a lot of her sponsors, I was sharing my relationships with her… So, whether it was the business of helping her with her puppy line or whether it was the business of Reality TV, we are in business, so I probably would have done it in such a way that was an offense to her because it was never intended for malice. I have not put any of what I’ve learned in her background out there.
GR: Has the situation had any impact on your life off camera?
LNC: Oh, sure. In my businesses I’m a motivational speaker. I’m an empowerment speaker so, even though I had a human moment, people that I speak on platforms to say, “oh my God, that wasn’t an empowering moment at all … what are you gonna say about empowerment after having that happen?” And I just have to tell them, ‘listen, the higher the level, the higher the devil.’ When you’re out in front, you are the target and people are going to try to destroy your character, destroy your credibility … there’s not a successful person who has a high level of success who hasn’t at some point in their career come under attack, and every test you go through there is a testimony at the end … and you know I’m a firm believer that when things happen that are negative and not as you planned, you gotta figure out how to turn the mess into a message and sometimes the message gets turned into a ministry to help other people who go through those kinds of experiences.
But, I think my work speaks for itself and the people that know me know that that’s not my character. That’s why even my cast mates were shocked when they heard that it happened. I think that the good that I do in the community, from the empowerment network, to the philanthropy that my husband and I are doing, we’re doing the fashion for a cause together. We’re raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for a medical mission to Haiti, we’re sending over medical equipment to hospitals in Haiti, so we’re doing a lot of positive and we just have to keep focus with being on purpose and not being pulled into the drama, because the drama is just a distraction.
GR: Are there any pending charges stemming from the altercation?
LNC: Both of us did press charges. Of course, I did throw the water and that is an offense, but she did put her hands on me first, and so right now its just kind of out there. I think the police realize a lot of this is manipulated for the sake of a TV show and instigated and nothing has really gone forward with it.
And that’s her story and she’s sticking to it.
Married to Medicine airs on Bravo on Sundays 9/8c.