The Hottest Show That's NOT On TV

Tuesday, April 01, 2014 Casey Arden


By: Casey Arden
From the Bachelorette, to the Real Housewives to Honey Boo Boo, everyone watches reality television. But this summer AT&T and the Chernin Group did something totally new; reality TV only available through social media.

It’s called @SummerBreak and it follows the lives of eight California high school juniors and seniors during their summer breaks. The producers did their best to pick a cohesive group, but even more important than that, a group that has a huge social media presence. Every week there is a short episode on Youtube, but the experience is meant to be through your mobile device; almost all the content is on Twitter. The eight cast members tweet constantly and the official show’s twitter (@summerbreak) retweets what the cast members are saying, tweets clips of what they are filming and comments on or narrates the lives of these eight kids. Everything comes in bits and pieces, but is constant – and a good way for AT&T to keep you constantly on your phone, checking for what is going on.

I found out about this phenomenon towards the end of the season, but then was able to binge watch all of the episodes on Youtube and scan through all of the tweets from the entire season. While it is probably just as mindless as any of the other reality shows that I watch, I felt a little bit less guilty. The entire season took about an hour an a half to watch – including the cast bios and introductions. I’ve probably spent more than an hour and a half just listening to Chris Harrison re-explain what I just watched happen on the Bachelorette this summer.

Unlike the Bachelorette – which I watch with my mom, and the Real Housewives, (which I don’t watch, but my older cousins and my aunts do) this reality show is definitely for a younger crowd. Thankfully, because the episodes and clips are so short there isn’t really any filler; you get all the information much faster. It’s a novel idea, it’s almost surprising that this wasn’t done earlier (at least before people named their baby Hashtag).