The time has come to queue something that combines my two loves: British TV and reality TV. When Hulu tells me something is the “British Jersey Shore” I refuse to turn away. I immediately added the first three episodes of The Only Way is Essex to my queue. After watching, I give this show my trashy reality show seal of approval.
Some are attractive and some look like the love child of Michael Scott and Jim Halpert.
In case you were wondering if the boobs are real, they’re not as the show’s intro disclaimer shows:
I love that they’re upfront about the show being pretty staged. The Hills always made it out like everything was real and they lived over-dramatic lives. Essex is like, yup, it’s fake, enjoy wanker. I also found it interesting that in episode 3 the cast is watching the second episode from home, wiping tears from the embarrassment caught on camera (actually that was just Lauren who is pining after her dickish ex, Mark, and had a way close up of her tattooed bikini line). Either they edit these episodes really fast or they were watching that scene in A League of Their Own when Betty Spaghetti’s husband died (spoiler alert!) that you can’t help but cry and superimposed last week’s episode over it. We’ll never know because it’s edited for drama!
The standout star of Essex has to be Amy, a beautician and aspiring model. With her bright red hair, fake eyelashes, big ol’ fake books, and humor, she’s a delight amongst a some duds in the cast. Ok, just Lauren. Seriously, does she ever become happy because I’m three episodes in and want her gone. It’s early in the series; maybe I’ll change my mind. Back to Amy. Amy steals my heart immediately in episode 1 when she explains vajazzling and then helps her best friend Sam add some bling to her hoo-ha. And eventhough it’s probably completely fake and will never happen, the sap in me hopes she starts dating Kirk, who gets a pin-up tattoo with a startling resemblance to our red-haired raven. Season 3 just started up in the UK and I’ve heard Amy is gone and might have her own spinoff.
Let this be true!
The Only Way is Essex definitely passes my three-episode rule and I’m now adding seasons 1 and 2 to my Hulu queue. Because it’s British, I can look past the fact that it’s very similar to a show I hated and wondered who the hell actually sat through all the seasons buying into it. It’s not as quotable as Jersey Shore but any show that feels like it’s shaming a group of people from a certain area is always something you have to watch a couple episodes of.