5 Reality Series Inspired By Daytime Soap Operas

No. 3: Laguna Beach

It should come as no surprise that one of the most beloved and successful executive producers in daytime soap opera history helped launch one of MTV's most popular series of all time. When the creators of Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County wanted to soap up their upcoming high school docu-drama they called up former General Hospital and Port Charles showrunner Wendy Riche

Riche served as co-executive producer on the first season of Laguna Beach, helping introduce a generation of tweens to the nastiest blonde-on-blonde rivalry since Sami tangled with Carrie on Days of Our Lives Kristin Cavallari vs. Lauren Conrad. Kristin and Lauren's battle over teen hunk Stephen Colletti was textbook daytime soap, complete with a scheming, hypersexual, bad girl warring with a rootable, virginal heroine.

The drama continued on Laguna Beach's even more popular spinoff series The Hills, which transplanted Lauren—and much later Kristin—to Los Angeles in pursuit of the glamorous life.

Photo credit: MTV


logan_echolls's picture
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3 August 2012
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7 hours 21 min

Dirty soap sucked balls except for kristen's real life and Farah cussing up a storm. Too scripted

david46208's picture
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@Jamey Giddens: The Real World was definitely the most soapy of them all. Each season they produced a popular couple, a villain, a vixen, a heroine and a touched on a social issue. It was like combining Agnes Nixon's ability mix in a relevant social issue with the drama's of cast of characters from diverse social, economic and racial backgrounds.

Nothing beats though Puck as the best villain ever during the SF season where HIV-positive AIDS educator Pedro Zamora was bullied by him. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NK0xGB4Ivp8

My favorite popular couple came from the Las Vegas season with the African American pairing of Alton and Irulan. That was a first for the series.

I also liked David (from New Orleans season) as the Jerk! "come on be my baby tonight!" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZ5sbrHSq0E

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25 October 2011
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There was a time when I thought that reality TV was not scripted...now I know better.