Just how fake was “The Hills?”

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In the world of reality shows, real-vs-fake is a spectrum rather than a black-and-white issue. Sometimes crucial information is held back and back stories are fudged a little, sometimes they’re highly “scripted.” Often producers bring the cast members into a situation they wouldn’t normally be in, or situations that happened without cameras are reenacted, but besides the fact that the people on The Hills were playing “themselves,” it always seemed to be a little extra fake.

In 2009 some of the cast members were photographed with what was speculated to be a script for the show.

In 2011 Kristin opened up to the New York Post, saying “almost all of it,” was fake. “I think I can say that by now. I guess no one can get mad at me anymore.” At the time Kristin was upset about a cocaine addiction storyline that ended up on the cover of magazines. “They told me they weren’t going to do any of that stuff,” she said “Basically, all that was to get ratings. I was on the cover of Us Weekly saying I need to go to rehab and that my parents wanted me to go to rehab. Both of my parents were like, ‘Oh really? Why don’t they call me?’

In 2012 Kristin was a little more lighthearted about the situation with Andy Cohen on WWHL. She said it was “fake relationships, fake fights. It was fun, ’cause you’re acting. And that was more fun for me.”

In 2009 Lauren Conrad admitted that a filmed telephone apology from Spencer Pratt was fake because she wasn’t on the other end of the call. But even so, Lauren is adamant that the essence of the show was reality. “I think the story they told wasn’t a dishonest one,” she told Allure. “The way they did it sometimes was. They aren’t going to be there for everything. Sometimes two of their main characters will get into a fight, and that’s important to the storyline. The [producers] need that reenacted.”

On the finale episode of the series that aired 3 years ago the show’s producers and creators make a nod to the scripted-reality hybrid by pulling back to reveal a fake set behind a tearful goodbye scene between Kristin Cavallari and Brody Jenner.

Friday August 9, at 11:30 a.m. ET MTV will air an alternate ending to The Hills.
Here’s the original ending that first aired July 13, 2010:

CLICK HERE to watch the alternate ending.

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6 thoughts on “Just how fake was “The Hills?”

  1. At least on The Hills while it was clearly not straight up reality I feel like the cast stayed pretty true to their own real life personalities. There’s a show on ABC Family now called The Vineyard that is basically a really bad version of The Hills. It’s made to look like a reality show but it’s scripted but most of the people on it are HORRIBLE at acting natural and it seems like every word they say is literally scripted. I feel like on The Hills they had more of a storyline and things that producers wanted them to do without being told what to say word for word which made it seem more relatable. I miss The Hills! lol

    1. I saw that show for the first time yesterday and immediately thought of a bad version of The
      Hills too! Glad I’m not the only to think that show is awful…

      1. Yea the first time I watched the Vineyard I was confused as to wether the show expects people to believe its reality or if it’s outwardly meant to be a “scripted reality show”.. that term in itself makes no sense though lol.. regardless i think it would be entertaining if the people on it just acted like normal people but most of them are trying too hard so it just comes across so terribly lol

  2. I assumed it was real because it was so boring. The fact it was fake and that dull is sad.

  3. Um where is LC? She WAS the show. It wasn’t that good once she left. Kristen was only on for one season!

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