reality tv

My mind is still blown: All I do is think about the final scene of The Hills.

There are a lot of high stakes... events... playing out in the world right now, and you better believe all I can think about is the finale of The Hills circa 2010. 

T'was a simpler time.

California Gurls by Katy Perry and Snoop Dogg was playing on the radio. Everyone was poking each other on Facebook and it was really annoying and why the f**k was that ever even a feature. But the most significant moment obviously came on July 13, when The Hills aired its final episode. 

If you don't remember The Hills then shut up because you do??

There was Lauren Conrad who got an internship at Teen Vogue and spent 95 per cent of her time distracting Whitney, and the other 5 per cent leaving early because Jason was being a d*ck. 

I'm more familiar with Lauren Conrad's black headband than my mother's face.  

Then there were Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt who had the most toxic relationship of all time which is ongoing. There was one season where Heidi just went and got a new face and no her mother wasn't stoked about it.

And Audrina Partridge. But also Kristin Cavallari who turned up four seasons late to save the show from itself. 

Sometimes you just need a Kristin to emerge, steal everyone's boyfriends (Jason/Justin/Jordan etc. etc.) and then call all the women "f**kin' piranhas".

Are you someone's boyfriend?? Coz if I'm not I'm... busy.  


But after six seasons, a producer sat around a large white table and whispered enough. And a finale was pieced together. 

Look. I can't remember the specifics of most of the episode. Kristin was relocating to 'Europe' and even though she kept crying her eyeliner stayed put. And Lo was there desperately trying to develop a subplot. And Audrina bought a house (!!) on the beach (!!!) even though she was like 24 and never at work. 

But none of that matters. 

Because it's the last scene specifically I need to talk about. 

Watch the trailer for The Hills New Beginnings. Post continues below. 

Video via MTV. 

Kristin had her arms around Brody Jenner who looked suitably apathetic that she was leaving. She then got into what appeared to be a black limousine which raised more questions than it answered. She was going to the airport, but that did little to explain the limousine. I digress. 

As Brody watched her drive away, the Hollywood sign behind him started to shift and what.

Sir. I don't mean to alarm you but I think there might currently be an earthquake behind you.  

They played a remix of Unwritten which felt like a... metaphor for... something, and then the 'background' was wheeled away to reveal a set behind him, with cameras and lights and mics and everyone started clapping as though this was a wrap. For some sort of... Scripted. Television. Show. 

Kristin then got out of the weird limo which actually didn't go anywhere, and she hugged Brody like they're co-stars and not at all ex-boyfriend and girlfriend

It's almost like this whole thing was fake and not the true stories of several painfully good-looking people who live in LA and do you know what such a revelation does to a person? 


According to Brody, this was MTV's way of trolling viewers who had always questioned how 'real' The Hills actually was.

He said at the time: "The thing is, as you saw on the end - what's real and what's fake, you don't know.

"Our relationship, the entire time could have been fake. That's one of the questions: what was real and what was fake, and we left it [open]."


Listen to Mamamia's entertainment podcast, The Spill, where hosts Laura and Kee talk about Abbie Chatfield and how all reality TV villains are never created equally. Post continues after podcast.

That final scene told us in no uncertain terms that Brody Jenner is an award-winning actor. He even went on to play a role in the critically acclaimed television show Keeping Up With The Kardashians. 

I lay awake at night thinking...

Maybe Lauren Conrad didn't get an internship at Teen Vogue based on her credentials that in retrospect didn't exist.

Maybe Kristin wasn't even that into STEEEPPH-EN whose name she said like STEPPPPH-EN. 

Maybe Audrina could afford a house because of her SALARY FROM BEING ON A REALITY SHOW FFS.

Literally 10 years ago the most iconic reality show of the moment told us outright that it was contrived. There were producers. At least some of it was scripted. It might as well have taken place on a set. And yet in 2020 we still want to believe that Selling Sunset is an accurate depiction of the lives of LA real estate agents. 


I'll tell you how.

Because for some godforsaken reason, in real life, Heidi and Spencer still sleep next to each other every night. Their relationship was, and appears to still be, real. 

It's that incredible fusion of real life meets script that makes these shows so shamefully addictive. We spend most of our time watching them trying to untangle the knot of fact and fiction. 

I remain haunted by the existential question: But who is Kristin Cavallari... really? 

And that, I think we can all agree, is the most important question of our time.