Life imitates art imitates life
Not to get too “meta” but the story of this show, itself about a fictional TV show, inspired by a long-running reality show, is rather intriguing.
UnREAL is a comedy drama about the making of a fictional The Bachelor- style American series called Everlasting. And not unlike the combative conditions on the fictional set, UnREAL’s cocreators Marti Noxon and Sarah Gertrude Shapiro have had a widely reported real-life feud.
Noxon is a TV veteran whose producing credits range from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to more recent series such as Mad Men, as well as writing and directing the recent Netflix film To the Bone. Shapiro was previously a producer on the American version of The Bachelor.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, when Shapiro described herself as a Magical Unicorn and “the voice of the show, throwing up rainbows all over the board” in a magazine profile, and appeared to criticise Noxon’s appearance at a press tour, the writing was on the wall. Noxon departed (though retains her executive producer credit).
The consensus seems to be that all this actual drama harmed the second series, screening here on free-to-air after premiering last year on Stan.
Stars including Shiri Appleby, Constance Zimmer and Craig Bierko return as another fictional season of Everlasting goes into production, this time with a troubled AfricanAmerican NFL player as its male attraction (played by BJ Britt).
In this strange world, people say things such as, “I’m not manic, I’m changing the world”, and “what does he want us to do, kill someone in every episode?”, without any sense of irony.
UnREAL has been renewed for its third and fourth seasons. Tuesday, 8.25pm, SBS Viceland.
Shiri Appleby as Rachel and Constance Zimmer as Quinn in the reality TV satire UnREAL