Reality TV is a lucrative genre. Fans love watching the drama and bizarre realities others live. TLC has capitalized on shocking viewers with shows like 90 Day Fiance and Toddler & Tiaras. One show has followed particularly sensational stories. My Strange Addiction follows the lives of those who have addictions that are out of the ordinary and affect the lives of the subjects and their loved ones. However, just like other reality shows, there is speculation on how much of the show is actually reality. Furthermore, some participants have turned their addictions into revenue sources and hobbies.
Is it even an addiction?
My Strange Addiction follows people who appear to have strange addictions, like a man in love with his car and someone who can’t stop eating couch cushions. The show has experienced success, but several genuine criticisms deserve attention. On the one hand, some stories follow people who appear to have serious problems, making viewers worry. One episode followed a young man who spent hundreds of thousands on surgeries to look more like Justin Bieber, according to The Things. Later on, this young man was found dead in a motel room. While that is tragic, there is the other end of the spectrum. Some stories are not addictions at all. One person who was featured and made to look creepy is a well-known taxidermist, who turned the hobby into a job. Another person who appeared to have more of a hobby than addiction is Adam Guerra, who has an obsession with looking like Madonna.
Guerra appeared on My Strange Addiction in 2015. The story followed his obsession with looking like pop icon Madonna. The impersonator had spent over $200,000 on surgeries to look like his idol. His mother has expressed grave concern over her son’s addiction. She worries about his mental and physical health. Yet, his mother’s worries aren’t enough of a deterrent for Guerra. According to DailyMail, he described his addiction by saying, “I have an addiction to being Madonna. I feel respected when I am Madonna, but I don’t know who Adam is.”
The show follows dramatic scenes, including Guerra’s boyfriend breaking up with him over the obsession. In the end, the young impersonator claims he is giving up Madonna impersonating. The storyline following Guerra on My Strange Addiction was dramatic but problematic. For one thing, this was not Guerra’s first foray into reality television. In fact, he had already appeared on The Ricki Lake Show, RuPaul’s Drag Race, and Botched. Guerra also had been attempting to break into the music industry with his single, “I Am Not Madonna.”
Contrary to the ending of Guerra’s My Strange Addiction episode, he continues to travel the world performing as a Madonna impersonator. He has won the title of the number one Madonna impersonator by MTV and VH1. He also has been honored as Best Impersonator on World of Wonder. Guerra has expressed that he loves to travel, and no wonder worries about what others think. “Everybody watches drag,” Guerra said, according to LA Times, “Gay, straight, black, white, any culture, they all watch a guy dressed as a female and get entertainment from it. It does something to the human psyche, you could say. There was a time when I was embarrassed, but I’m not anymore. People just enjoy what I do.”
In the meantime, D-Lite’s tour dates are on hold due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Newly separated from his husband, this is a year of changes for Guerra. He continues to seek out opportunities. During the pandemic, hard work has gone into renovating his Rosarito apartment into a stunning Airbnb. He also has other entrepreneurial ideas and aspirations. He would love to launch a makeup line and, at some point, open his own nightclub.
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