We love E!’s Second Wives Club, which centers on the luxurious, otherworldly and at times hilarious lives of six women either engaged or married to accomplished older men in Los Angeles.
But one “second wife”, Morisa, has been making more than her fair share of news of late for remarks construed by co-star Veronika as being not very sensitive.
Undoubtedly, Morisa is one of the most private members of the cast. Her husband is a serious medical player in town, Dr. Mark Surrey.
He is a board-certified reproductive surgeon and fertility specialist in obstetrics and gynecology. But by design, you really won’t be seeing him in the show. Second Wives Club is Morisa’s game right now.
She’s a multi-hyphenate true talent whose busy schedule is further complicated by being a hands-on mom raising her and Marks’ young son and her eleven-year-old daughter from a previous marriage.
We took time out to chat with this dynamic star of E!’s new series…
Monsters and Critics: You describe yourself in the show as “fashionably frugal, not frivolous” – what does that mean?
Morisa Surrey: It’s in my DNA to be careful about what and how I spend money. I shop at a range of stores, including those on the lower price scale.
I like to wheel and deal — I know how to get the best sales prices and deals. I go to flea markets.
I look for sales and often return gifts from my husband if I think they’re too extravagant — or I renegotiate, which is the intrinsic Suze Orman in me!
M&C: You have so many interests in addition to acting and being a wife and mother — real estate, baby products, interior design — if you had to choose one as a “priority”, what would that be?
MS: My first priority is as wife and mother, and always will be.
But my entrepreneurial streak is strong, so I am very excited to be introducing a new blog this month called Billion Bucks on a Budget which gives me the opportunity to expand on areas I both know and care about — health, fashion, business, and lifestyle.
It will cover everything from investing in real estate to new moms getting back in shape to frugal shopping tips — basically how to save money and look like a billion bucks.
And, I am also looking next at a hair vitamin line of products and a skincare line primarily for pregnant women that will help with dealing with melasma and other skin issues.
Also, I’m restarting a fashion line I started years ago, Morisa’s Creations, which will also include recyclable baby and adult handbag products.
I also keep active as a licensed real-estate agent and oversee investments. Of course, acting and modeling are always on my plate.
My acting career was interrupted to devote time to raising my daughter — a happy disruption, of course — after I finished Not Another Teen Movie and The Animal.
M&C: How do you get along with the other “second wives”?
MS: Some days good, some days not…as reflected in the show.
M&C: Your fight with Veronika on Episode 2 raised racial issues — can you explain what was said and put it into context?
MS: I genuinely apologize for what may have come across as insensitive, but I had zero malicious intent.
I would never want to offend anyone, regardless of race, gender or sexual orientation. It’s not who I am.
At the same time, I’m disgusted by the way that conversation was edited to make me out to be the bad guy.
I realize reality TV needs drama for ratings, but their edits took the conversation out of context, and made me appear to be someone I’m definitely not.
M&C: Why did you want to be part of this show?
MS: I expected it would be fun and entertaining, but it wasn’t necessarily what I signed up for.
M&C: How did your husband feel about your being part of the show?
MS: He’s a supportive husband but, as I have said many times, he is a very private person and did not want to participate in the show.
He warned me about how reality shows work. He was right and I guess I was simply naïve.
M&C: Do you consider yourself a typical Beverly Hills housewife?
MS: Absolutely not. I enjoy and appreciate much of what Beverly Hills offers, but I’m not a serial shopper and don’t have a lot of free time, so I don’t consider myself typical in any way. It gets back to my being frugal and not frivolous.
I’m happier making money through my businesses and investments rather than burning money for some instant gratification.
Second Wives Club airs Thursdays at 9pm ET/PT on E!.