Denver newspaper assembles fake Real World cast and crew to fool the public

I admit that when I heard the next Real World was going to Denver, I thought that producers had basically run out of cities. But it’s rapidly becoming clear that being deprived of oxygen inspires great art. That’s because Denver has reacted to the show like no other city. Seattle and Chicago may have had protests, but Denver is leading with its innovative and informative approaches to the show’s presence.

First, the Denver Post broke journalistic ground by covering the show round-the-clock with a blog. And now, the city’s alternative newspaper Westword got into the game by assembling a fake cast to fool the city’s residents.

The “cast members” were followed by a camera crew, security, and “full-fledged asshole producers.” Writer Jared Jacang Maher even forcefully requested that locals sign releases, just like the show’s producers do. One fake cast member remarked, “I seriously cannot believe how easy that was. No one even questioned a single thing.” They even staged a fight, a scene of which is included in the video of their evening [MP4].

Their performance was so great, or people’s expectations were so low, that they inspired a rash of cast and crew sightings. But best of all, they fooled Holly from Road Rules, who spotted the crew, came over, and introduced herself. “It’s funny. I don’t recognize any of the staff,” she said.

Why play mindgames with the city’s residents, never mind hapless former reality stars? The paper says the city’s “pure mountains majesty, our folksy ways, [were] being sullied and pranced around like some martini-infused, oversexed marionette peering into the wasted glory hole of American excess!” Also, they “despise The Real World.”

Get Real [Westword]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.