Sunday, August 14, 2016

Staff Review: UnREAL

Let's face it folks, America is obsessed with reality television, especially dating shows. How else would The Bachelor last 20 seasons and The Bachelorette 12?   Have you ever been glued to your television thinking "these people are crazy, why would they go on a show like this"? I've probably seen a handful of Bachelor and Bachelorette episodes, dating shows are not my cup of tea, but I find UnREAL fascinating.  This show is a a train-wreck, and I just can't look away. 

UnREAL is in its second season on Lifetime.  When I think of Lifetime, I think of feel good programming featuring female leads. There is some angst, some sort of tragedy the main character needs to overcome and it ends with a happily ever after.  The only thing UnREAL has that fits my perception of Lifetime is female lead characters.  

UnREAL is a show about the making of a reality dating show called "Everlasting". Marti Noxon, one of the creators of UnREAL, has said in interviews that this series is based on what really happens behind the scenes of a reality dating show.  Given how dark and twisty UnREAL is, I truly hope that the majority of the show is a gross exageration. On Everlasting, producers are assigned girls (called wifeys) and there are bonuses based on how long the girls last on the show.  What does it mean to produce a girl?  It means manipulation pure and simple.  Create drama, film drama, air drama for all the world to see.  That is what Everlasting is all about. 

The main female characters are Quinn and Rachel.  Quinn is the Executive Producer of Everlasting, this show is her life and she will do anything to make it a success.  Rachel is one of the show producers.  In the first season she returns to Everlasting after having a monumental breakdown on camera during Everlasting's finale.   Rachel is damaged, actually everyone making and starring in Everlasting seems to be damaged. 

A few more notable characters are Chet and Jeremy.  Chet is the creator of Everlasting (or so he would have you believe), he has a substance abuse problem, a wife, and has been having a long-term affair with Quinn.  Jeremy is one of the cameramen and Rachel's ex-boyfriend.  Jeremy starts out as a sympathetic character, but apparently Everlasting sucks the soul right out of you and everyone associated with the show becomes horrible.

To give you an idea about how successful UnREAL has been, after season 1, Lifetime renewed the show for a second and third season.  It is possible the show won't last more than 3 seasons, but I will tune in for as long as it lasts.  Each season is 10 episodes so it has excellent binge-watching potential.

Disclaimer: This show is rated Mature for some serious adult content, including sex and language. It may be on Lifetime, but it is something you would expect to see on HBO or Showtime.

~Amy, Adult Services  

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