When we were invited to a première of new episodes The City and The Hills on Tuesday, hosted by Whitney Port, it was certainly contrast to the other event that evening, a screening of Trainspotting in a Glaswegian drug den decked out Shoreditch club.
For those who haven’t heard of The Hills, it’s a reality TV show that shadows the rich and wannabe famous spoilt post-teens in Hollywood. While some of the action might play out as Audrina and friends life it, when the show airs in the UK, broadcasters are forced to disclaim ‘some scenes are created for entertainment purposes’. And yet, as trashy as it is, for some reason, it can be hard to peel your eyes away. At least, throngs of teenage girls seem to think so.
Outnumbered 100 to 1, I was the pretty much the only guy in the Curzon Soho as Port took to the stage to take questions from the literally screaming fans packed into the auditorium. A veteran of perhaps 5 episodes, I hardly consider myself an expert on the series, though The Hills could easily slip into guilty pleasure territory if I stumbled into anything approaching a double figure of episodes.
Number 6, an unaired episode of season five subtly titled “It’s On Bitch!”, was everything that makes it unmissable. ‘Perfect couple’ Heidi and Spencer were as vile as ever and Audrina unlucky in love as so-called friend swooped in.
The City is a little less successful. If The Hills feels set-up, multi-camera phone calls and all, The City’s ‘stars’ should be credited as actors, and the reality series called a drama. Whitney Port will still pull as many fans but her life around her feels all too fake.
A tonne of fans will tune every week, no doubt, but for now, I’ll be leaving a guilty pleasure slot open for The Hills, rather than its NY spin-off.
New episodes of The Hills and The City start on MTV from October 18th at 9pm.