Thursday, June 18, 2015


What is it about us that makes us enjoy watching horrible people do horrible things? We like to think that we are civilized, but at the end of the day are we really any different than the Romans who would gather in a coliseum to watch two guy hack each other apart? Isn't that all reality television is?

Perhaps it's a bit of an overreach to compare ladies competing with each other to win the heart of a bachelor with gladiators disemboweling each other....but only a bit.

UnREAL is a scripted drama about the behind-the-scenes action on a Bachelor-style reality show called Everlasting. The characters are all generally kind of awful, but somehow it still works. Usually when a show is full of horrible people it doesn't interest me--but in this case the characters are all believably horrible. Meaning we understand the reasons for the choices they make. And in the case of Rachel, a producer on the show responsible for getting those money moments (literally), she at least feels really bad about the manipulation, the lies, and encouraging the worst in others.

She hates the job...but she's just so good at it.

From the Lifetime website:
Set against the backdrop of the hit dating competition show "Everlasting," "UnREAL" is led by flawed heroine Rachel Goldberg, a young producer whose sole job is to manipulate her relationships with, and among, the contestants to get the vital dramatic and outrageous footage that the program’s dispassionate executive producer, Quinn King, demands. What ensues is an eye-opening look at what happens in the outrageous world of unscripted television, where being a contestant can be vicious and being a producer a whole other reality.
It's all kind of a train wreck, but in the best way possible. It's well made, and well acted, and addictive. Just like the shows it parodies, the subject matter of UnREAL is tawdry--most of the characters clearly have some kind of disorder--and you'll feel like a total voyeur after each episode. But isn't that point? You're not watching Lifetime to make yourself a better person. You're watching it for the drama. And UnREAL delivers that in spades.

"We're selling true love here, people! TRUE LOVE!"

UnREAL airs Mondays at 10 p.m. EST on Lifetime.

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