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Is Mob Wives the most dangerous show to ever air on Australian TV?

Australia, we have a new reality TV show.

How do we describe it? Well, it’s like The Real Housewives meets Underbelly. As in, it stars the wife of the late Carl Williams, which the original 2008 crime drama was based.

Listen to everything you need to know about Australia’s new TV show, Mob Wives on The Binge. 

It’s called Mob Wives and like most reality TV concepts, it’s a spin-off of a show of the same name from the US.

The original show followed a group of State Island women whose family members had been arrested and imprisoned for crimes allegedly linked to the Mafia.

The Australian version of the show has been in the works for more than two years, and the cameras have just begun rolling on the first season’s pilot episode.

According to The Sunday Telegraph, the pilot will star Roberta Williams, the widow of ‘criminal kingpin’ Carl Williams, as well as the 21-year-old daughter of convicted drug smuggler Tomislav Samac, Stefani and the 39-year-old daughter of Melbourne underworld figure Pasquale Villani, Raquael.

Leyla Yavuz, the on/off girlfriend of former Kings Cross drug king pin Bill Bayeh, and single mum Lisa Candido – heralded as an “underworld socialite” – will also make appearances.

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mob wives AU cast
Raquael Villani, Lisa Candido and Stefani Samac will all star in the new Australian series. Image via Instagram.

But while Aussies' obsession with reality television seems to know no bounds (hello, Married At First Sight, The Bachelor and Seven Years Switch), the fact that Mob Wives Australia has been given the go-ahead has enraged some advocacy groups.

A spokesman for the Crime Victims Support Association, Noel McNamara, told The Sydney Morning Herald the concept of the show was "a disgrace"

"It's quite offensive for people who've lost a loved one to some of our biggest scumbags in the criminal justice system," he said.

"There's nothing worse than for victims' families to see things like that come up on their TV screens. It's just re-victimising them all over again."

mob wives US
The original US version of Mob Wives was focused on women with connections to the Mafia. Image via VH1.
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48-year-old Roberta Williams - arguably the most recognisable name in the show's cast, and who is a convicted drug trafficker herself - thinks otherwise.

Speaking to KIIS network's Hughesy & Kate , she said the show wouldn't be "glamourising" a life of crime.

"We're not trying to glorify the underworld...There is [a connection] to crime, but we're not on there to promote gang life, the underworld, criminality or anything like that," she said.

For the most controversial TV news of the week, listen to the newest episode of The Binge with Laura Brodnik and Clare Stephens. 

Roberta claimed that there is a lot about her that Australia has yet to learn.

"[They haven't] seen me out there with my little boy who's got autism, getting him ready for school, the struggles of day-to-day life with him," she said.

"That is my life...things you don't know about me.

"It's more about if we can change the minds of some young girls out there if we can direct them away from crime, towards other avenues rather than seeing this as a great, fun life.

"There are no rewards in the end...bringing up kids on their own without their dads around, or visiting prisons every week isn't a fun game."

What do you think - does a show like Mob Wives glamourise crime? Tell us in the comments below.

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