MTV picked up six new TV series this week, including an unscripted “dating” show based on the pseudo-documentary Catfish. According to Deadline, Catfish star Nev Schulman will host the program, which follows the basic outline of the film and includes young singles dating online then meeting in real life.
Catfish followed Schulman in his courtship of what seemed to be a gorgeous young single woman on Facebook. In what turned out to be a happy and highly convenient coincidence for the documentarians, the girl ended up being just one of a middle-aged woman’s multiple Facebook personalities. The filmmakers had the opportunity to investigate with Nev’s journey in internet fraud, and delved into the propensity of some people to “sell” themselves as something they’re not due to the anonymity of the internet.
The producers of Catfish are bringing this new reality TV series to MTV, with Schulman himself guiding internet couples through the scary first face-to-face meeting. In each episode, a couple on the show who have interacted only online over the course of a few months and have reached the point of love will go through the emotional journey of discovering the truth about their significant other and meet each other in reality. Naturally, there’s going to be plenty of drama and probably a lot of revealed misrepresentations.
MTV’s new series include some scripted and some unscripted TV shows. Four of the new shows are unscripted, which is hardly a surprise given the general popularity of reality TV and the low overhead costs. If this new Catfish-based series is anything like the feature film “documentary” made by Schulman and his posse, then I will certainly be taking a pass.