Season 2 of Lifetime’s unexpectedly great series UnREAL will do what the real-life Bachelor has strangely never done, and feature a black bachelor.
With a black man as a central character on the show’s fictional reality series Everlasting—to play off the lead Rachel (Shiri Appleby)—this season has the potential to be as equally entertaining as it is enlightening, and maybe even artfully offensive.
According to Variety:
The executive producers said the show will focus on the controversy raised when “Everlasting,” the show-within-the-show, casts its first-ever African-American suitor — something “The Bachelor” has famously yet to do. “There are few things more pressing than this conversation,” said executive producer Sarah Gertrude Shapiro. “I’ve heard appalling things about race all the time,” she said, referring to her experience as a producer.
The show’s writers will hopefully find creative un-PC ways to address these racial tensions and touch on some broader important issues in the process.
Constance Zimmer, who plays Everlasting TV producer Quinn, told E! News, “It’s actually really exciting because I do feel like the second season for us means we can kind of go darker. And we can maybe go a little bit further than we might’ve been afraid to in the first season.”
Shapiro says, “I think one thing we’ve been talking a lot about in the room is who owns their narrative? And the complications of Rachel and Quinn being these white women who decide they’re going to take on the race issue on their very complicated, pretty crazy show.”
(This echoes what EP Carol Barbee said during a panel at TCA this week: “It’s fun to watch a show about white women making a show on race.”)
“We definitely have different voices in the room representing different points of view on this,” adds Shapiro. “But I think it’s a really complicated issue and that being PC about it sometimes stops us from making progress because we’re all too scared to talk about it... I’m terrified! But I just really think we should do it.”
The cast and crew have also revealed that men’s rights will be a topic of the season, in contrast to the first, which heavily focused on the farce of marriage and finding a perfect life partner. The show, mercifully, hired more male writers to tackle this particular story line, because men have problems, too.
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Image via Lifetime