October 9 2008

Melissa Portala, husband Andrew and two children, Eli and Emma, of Ohio are a family of magicians. Andrew has been perfecting his magic act for 25 years, and Melissa quit her job to manage his career.

A kid at heart, Andrew still hopes for his big break and practices magic all day. The kids are also in on the act: Eli began performing magic when he was just 18 months old and little Emma often participates as her brother’s assistant.

The Portalas don’t worry themselves with non-magical things like sports or education; Eli is allowed to miss school for performances and when Emma begs to join the soccer team her parents tell her to disappear.

Melissa travels to the California home of the Galvan family, where highly driven Jennifer works as a caterer/event planner, creating flawless weddings and parties.

Jennifer doesn’t just micromanage at her job, she also plans and schedules every aspect of her family’s perfect life. Jennifer prides herself on keeping her house spotless and preparing a home-cooked dinner for the family. The kids, Richard III and Elena must complete their many chores to perfection, strive for excellence on the soccer field and earn straight A’s at school.

In the first week of the swap, Melissa has to perform the ultimate magic trick by transforming into a hard-driving career woman and taskmaster. Meanwhile, Jennifer is horrified by the Portalas’ disorganized home and Andrew’s shaky magic career, not to mention their fun-comes-first mentality.

WIFE SWAP, Thursday 9th October 8.30pm

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