Monday, July 19, 2010

In Which "The Hills" Become A Holy Mountain...

Alright, it's not secret: I hated MTV's scripted reality dramedy The Hills and its unflinching insistence to not even try to be the least bit entertaining.  Seriously, I don't know how so many of you people sat through a single episode of this gratuitous exploration into vapidity, let alone whole seasons.  The Hills was boring.  It was boring for reality, and, if it was largely scripted, it was penned by the most uninteresting writers on the face of the Earth.  I've never seen so much sitting and staring.  I mean it, if these people are more exciting than your friends you need to find new friends, because living at all vicariously through Lauren Conrad or Kristin Cavallari is about as gauche as it is pathetic.  Yes, I may actually be trying to shame you right now.

Anyhow, MTV is clever.  MTV has always been clever, but it's clever in that frightening way where you're either in on the crude, ironically self-referential, culture skewering joke, or you're just sitting there killing brain cells in blind ignorance.  This isn't me trying to justify the reasons why MTV is my go-to station for those moments when the TV is "on in the background".  No, I'm serious.  I may loathe quite a few of the programs they broadcast, but I admit to a certain reverence for that remarkably effective way they have of cutting right through to the base, checked-out teenager in all of us.  That entire network is a huge, postmodern field study in self-aware hyper marketing.  It's brilliant.  They can sell you anything even as they mercilessly lampoon it.  Also?  The Hard Times of RJ Berger is a good show.  No, if you like teen comedies like at all, you should watch that

Where was I going?  Oh, MTV is clever.  The Hills was awful and bland and boring to watch but captured the attention of millions of girls who slipped effortlessly from The OC to Laguna Beach to a relatively adult celebrity culture.  Now, The Hills is over.  Honestly?  I didn't even know!  A friend told me.  At first I was just relieved to hear it had finally been put out of its misery, because I'm pretty sure Audrina Patridge was declared brain dead a doctor some time ago.  But then, see, they told me what happened.  Spoiler alert, I guess.  Watch this sort of cruddy version:



The Hills broke the fourth wall.  Basically, they did the exact ending of oddball cinematic gem The Holy Mountain.  Of course, it's nothing new and since, Lo Bosworth  (i have no idea what purpose she serves on the show) has since clarified that:
""Rest assured, we were simply poking fun in the way that our viewers have done since the show began to air," she continued. "Our show's undeniable production value sometimes made the validity of it all questionable, but in truth (and this really is the truth), the relationships with those on the show are real." [via MTV]
but...come on.  Let those who want to believe, believe.  This ending, for anyone with a modicum of intelligence who ever found themselves fascinated by the show, was like one big flashing justification for all those wasted hours.  It was the payoff, and in a way: I'm annoyed.   The Hills has gone and made itself relevant to classroom discussion.  It's meta.  Curses.  We'll be stuck with it forever!  Wink wink nudge nudge, whether it is or isn't totally staged (uh, yeah, it's definitely scripted.  "production values"?) is now much less important than the acknowledgement and the fact that MTV co-opted Alejandro Jodorowsky and fed him to label-mongering teen girls.  I'm impressed, and that makes me hate The Hills even more.  Now, Jodorowsky and Heidi Montag can be name dropped in a single sentence.  Do you understand how this taints everything I ever thought about The Hills?  Now, when I think of it, I will think of this:

Blerg!

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