If you engage in the guilty pleasure that is The Bachelor/ Bachelorette franchise, you will be mesmerized by Lifetime’s new show UnREAL.
Shiri Appleby (you might remember her as Adam’s girlfriend Natalia on Girls) stars as Rachel, a producer on a faux-Bachelor show called Everlasting. She had an alcohol-induced meltdown on the last series of Everlasting, and returns to the show determined to prove to Quinn, her no-nonsense boss (Constance Zimmer AKA Dana Gordon on Entourage) that she has recovered and is ready to get back to work.
The one-hour drama conveys the manipulative and almost villainous tactics the producers use to manufacture the drama and insanity the audience craves. Rachel struggles with eagerness to be the best at her job, and reluctance to exploit the female contestants for the sake of good television. She is constantly grappling with where to draw the line. The show also explores the strained relationships between producers and the complex personal lives of Quinn, Rachel, and the “suitor”, Adam, a British hotel heir attempting to reinvent his image.
This psychological drama conveniently airs on Mondays at 10 PM (right after The Bachelorette), and will make you rethink the social phenomenon that is reality television.