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Scott D. Pierce
Scott D. Pierce writes about television for the Salt Lake Tribune. Vice president of the Television Critics Associationn, he's covered TV in Utah since 1990.

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Another family of Utah polygamists will star in TLC reality show

Kody Brown and his family fled Utah and took the TLC polygamy series "Sister Wives" with them, but the cable channel has found another plural family from the Beehive State to populate a new show.

"My Five Wives," featuring Brady Williams, his wives Paulie, Robyn, Rosemary, Nonie, Rhonda and their 24 children, debuts Sunday, Sept. 15, on TLC. It's essentially a pilot for a possible series.

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The Williams are described as a "big, loving, progressive polygamous family ... who all live together on their large family property outside Salt Lake City."

These aren't your average polygamists, however. Brady is an ex-Mormon, but this group isn't particularly religious, we're led to believe.

"Believing in equality for everyone and a God who loves and accepts all, the Williams family emphasize that their choice to be together is more about their mutual love and commitment than it is about religion," accordng to TLC. "Though their beliefs and their decision to leave their church have led them to be shunned by their community and estranged from many family members, the Williams believe their sacrifices are worth it."

Alrighty then ...

Here are TLC's descriptions of the Brady Williams and his wives:

BRADY WILLIAMS: Brady was born into the Mormon Church, but until age 16, he had never heard of polygamy. At that time, his parents converted to a faith that embraced the lifestyle. Until the age of 34, he grew as a church leader before he and his family decided to break away. Currently, Brady works as a project manager at his brother's construction business while also pursuing a degree in philosophy at the local college.

PAULIE (first wife): Paulie and Brady have been married for 21 years and have six children, ranging in ages from 20 to nine years old. She was raised in a polygamist family and expected Brady to have additional wives, but she is also proud of her oldest daughter, who is recently married and plans a monogamous lifestyle. Paulie works as a dental hygienist.

ROBYN (second wife): Robyn and Brady have been married for 20 years and have five children, ranging in ages from 19 to nine years old. Married about nine months after Paulie, Robyn also grew up in a polygamous home and expected to be a plural wife. Dubbed by the family as the "creative" wife, Robyn has taken a few art classes and loves making handmade gifts for her large family.

ROSEMARY (third wife): Rosemary and Brady have been married for 18 years and have four children, ranging in ages from 17 to 11 years old. Rosemary used to work for the family construction business but stopped after winning a scholarship at the local college. She is studying for her teaching degree in music and biology and is particularly passionate about composing.

NONIE (fourth wife): Nonie and Brady have been married for 15 years and have five children, ranging in ages from 14 to four years old. Nonie was living in Montana when she first met Brady, and the two had a brief long-distance courtship before they got engaged. She currently handles the administrative side of the family's construction business and is the only wife that works with Brady on a steady basis.

RHONDA (fifth wife): Rhonda and Brady have been married for 12 years and have four kids, ranging in ages from 13 to two years old. Rhonda, who is Robyn's cousin, loves to work outside the home and is now a medical assistant. Despite their immediate bond, she confesses it still took eight years before she really felt like she belonged in the family. While Rhonda says there are downsides to polygamy, she loves that her kids always have other mothers around that love them.

This would be the third TV series to shine a light on polygamy in Utah. In addition to TLC's two reality shows, the scripted HBO series "Big Love" ran for five seasons (2006-11).



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