The pseudo-improvised reality series The Hills, as it plays out beyond MTV, on celebrity gossip covers and in nearly every other byway of the modern media, is above all a vicious decimator of hope. It mocks our hearts; it plays with our allegiances, and we welcome the abuse, the New York Times observes.
In its third season, which picks up tonight at 10 p.m., The Hills, set among young aspirants of the Hollywood Hills' music and fashion industries, has continued to track the emotional warfare between former best friends Lauren Conrad and Heidi Montag, while delving more deeply into the twistedness and superficiality of the boyfriends who ensure that the tortured rivals treat each other like Crips and Bloods.
Lauren Conrad and the rest of The Hills cast return at 10 p.m. tonight.
Defying our expectations, Heidi has emerged as a kind of feminist hero this season, climbing her way to a bigger position at the event-planning company where she orchestrates Nascar parties and the like, and refusing to acquiesce to the demands of her fiancÃ©, Spencer Pratt, that she get herself home on time.
Her career-mindedness sets their relationship off course.
The 21-year-old Heidi Montag identifies the problem with no name: a boyfriend who sits around an apartment decorated to look like an '80s video arcade while trying to deny Heidi a real wedding with the glory of registering.
As you recall, her groundswell of self-assertion begins when Spencer Pratt insisted on eloping, prompting Heidi to, like, boldly declare:
"This isn't, like, Spencer's relationship and you decide what we do."
The full-on joyous Oprah-fication of Heidi Montag culminates with the show's return and gives The Hills a new momentum.