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The Braxton family is comprised of five sisters – Toni, Traci, Towanda, Trina and Tamar. The sisters shot to fame after their show, Braxton Family Values, debuted on WEtv in 2011. The show quickly drew a large audience, tripling the network’s average viewership for the Tuesday 9 pm slot.
Each week, viewers tuned in to watch as the sisters navigated their personal and professional lives. Their mother, Evelyn Braxton, affectionately known as “Ms. E” joined the cast along with their brother, Michael. And in true reality tv fashion, the family brought the drama — and a lot of it. Fans would soon find out that the drama spilled past their family circle and into other areas as well.
And though the Braxtons enjoyed seven seasons with the network, Tamar announced in 2021 that the hit television series would be moving to another network. According to Tamar, behind-the-scenes disagreements with the network concerning how the family was portrayed on the show were part of the reason behind the move.
In 2022, the family announced that their second-oldest sister, Traci, passed away from esophageal cancer. And although the Braxton family is well-known for their popular television series, there’s more to the group than meets the eye. Here are some things fans should know about the Braxton family.
They once lost an opportunity to TLC
The oldest of the sisters, Toni Braxton, became a household name in the early ’90s. Her smooth and soulful vocals helped her gain popularity in the music industry, with her debut album taking over the number one spot on the Billboard 200 charts.
As young girls, all five sisters formed the musical group “The Braxtons”. Though the group didn’t earn much success, their single “Good Life” grabbed the attention of a couple of heavy hitters in the industry.
While forming LaFace Records, famed producers, L.A. Reid and Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, agreed to sign Toni, a decision that would catapult her career. As for the other sisters, the producers explained that they weren’t interested in another girl group as they had recently signed the famous R&B and hip hop trio, TLC. Fortunately, the sisters stayed close by Toni’s side as her backup singers, eventually making way for their own solo careers.
They weren’t sure how to cover Tamar’s suicide attempt
In an exclusive interview with ET, Trina and Towanda spoke about the family’s struggle navigating Tamar’s suicide attempt on the show. Although they felt it was an opportunity to segue into an honest discussion about mental health, many didn’t appreciate the idea.
The family received pushback from fans after the release of season seven’s teaser which included a clip of their initial reaction to the news. Then, pressure mounted as Tamar vocalized her disgust regarding their decision to continue the show in her interview with Tamron Hall.
Referencing the fallout from their decision to cover the event, Trina says “You’re darned if you do, darned if you don’t.” Still, they insisted that their intentions behind the move were pure. She says, “As long as we can help somebody, there’s a reason to continue on to do the show”. Towanda agreed, noting the importance of educating viewers on how suicide affects loved ones, “A lot of doctors will tell you that, you know, it’s important for that victim to understand how the family reacted, or how your loved ones are feeling when you decided to make that decision.”
Ultimately, the network continued on with the show, covering the sensitive subject in a respectful and informative way, according to the family’s wishes. As for their reaction to Tamar’s emotional interview with Tamron Hall, Towanda says, “It was important for Tamar to speak her truth, and that’s Tamar’s truth.” She adds, “Tamar is able to tell her truth, and we have a right to speak ours as well.”
The family is remembering Traci in their own way
After losing their sister to esophageal cancer, the Braxtons were understandably shaken. In an appearance with Tamron Hall, Toni opened up about how her death heavily impacted her and the family. She went on to add that the family is choosing the celebrate her life in unique ways. While she was alive, Traci would offer Toni advice about her new Lifetime movie, “Fallen Angels Murder Club.” Upon news of her passing, the network agreed to dedicate the movie anthology in Traci’s honor. “
In an interview with Dish Nation, Tamar revealed that she and her sisters each share a locket in the shape of a hummingbird, Traci’s favorite bird. They each carry Traci’s ashes inside their lockets, a symbol of their undying sisterhood. She talks about the reason for the hummingbird locket, “she wanted to go everywhere with us.”
Tamar revealed that Traci had five hummingbird tattoos on her back, each one representing her and her sisters. Hummingbirds are considered symbols of light who shun negativity so it’s no wonder why Traci felt a connection to the gentle bird.
Braxton Family Values canceled after seven seasons
Tamar has been vocal about her displeasure with the way the network portrayed her family. She made several requests to end her contract, accusing the network of promoting negative stereotypes of black women. Tensions between her and the network escalated as she refused to take part in much of seasons six and seven. After she attempted suicide in 2020, WE tv made the decision to release her from her contract with them.
Many fans were disappointed when the family continued on with the show, believing that they should have stood in solidarity with Tamar. In an interview with Hot 103.9, Towanda opened up about Tamar’s exit, the reaction from fans, and the trajectory of the show moving forward. “We’re really uncertain at this time,” she reveals. “I think our family just needs some healing.”
Is Braxton Family Values gone for good?
Throughout the series, the family took several hits that likely contributed to its cancellation on WE tv. In 2019, they announced that their beloved niece, Lauren, had died due to health issues. Not to mention the ongoing feud between Tamar and network executives took a toll on all of the cast. In an interview with Nick Cannon, she cited production involvement as the reason for her strained relationship with her sisters.
Since its cancellation, fans of the shows are wondering if the family will ever return to television. While the family committed to finishing up season seven, the forecast for season eight is not looking good.
While no announcements have been made regarding a season renewal, it’s safe to say that the family’s current focus is healing.
Fans of the series can, however, still catch episodes of the show on WE tv and other streaming platforms like Amazon’s Prime Video, YouTube TV, Philo, and Spectrum TV.