How Real Is The Bachelorette? Show Exec Weighs In on Producers’ Involvement in Reality TV Storylines
Mike Fleiss says he and the other creators of The Bachelor franchise “really, really kill ourselves and spend a lot of money and time to make sure that it's real.” But other reality TV shows? Not so much.
"I think most of the shows are fake," Mike tells The Canadian Press. Mike says other reality TV shows currently on the air are loosely scripted and contrived so that things will seem "more shocking." He explains, "It's not completely fake, but the best moments of those shows are usually orchestrated. If the viewer gets desensitized to these reality TV moments then yes, the stakes have to increase so that forces the producer to try and deliver something that is even higher octane."
Mike says TV viewers are already aware of the set-up and fine with it. "They're not requiring a pure delivery of non-fiction content. They know it's somewhat fake but they're OK with it."
Mike was talking about non-Bachelor show, but The Bachelor or Bachelorette viewers often wonder how set up things are — and if the producers get involved to raise the “stakes” and create storylines to carry through each season. For example, the “in the moment” camera interview answers and the dun-dun-dun-dun villain music — both aspects are selected by producers and could be manipulated to underscore a plotline. The show without the background sounds and selective editing would be an entirely different animal.
Not to say that the core “love stories” are fake. The guys and girls seem to genuinely fall in love on the show — and some couples actually make it after filming wraps. Maybe the really important “best moments” on The Bachelor/ette aren’t fake, but Mike is right about viewers not requiring modern reality TV to be raw, unproduced documentaries. They just want a good show.