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Series / The Hills

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The Hills is a spinoff of the MTV reality show Laguna Beach, following a group of twentysomethings living in Los Angeles. In particular, it follows (or followed) Lauren "LC" Conrad, one of the characters from Laguna Beach, as she attends the Fashion School of Design and Merchandising and gets an internship at Teen Vogue magazine. She later went on to work for the fashion PR firm People's Revolution, and left the show in season five following Heidi and Spencer's wedding. Other characters include:

  • Heidi Montag Pratt Montag, Lauren's roommate and BFF turned worst enemy.
  • The aptly-named Spencer Pratt, Heidi's boyfriend and later husband.
  • Audrina Patridge, who becomes Lauren's roommate after Heidi moves out.
  • Whitney Port, once a fellow intern of Lauren's at Teen Vogue. She went on to star in her own spinoff, The City, in which she works as a fashion designer in New York City.
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  • Brody Jenner, a friend and former boyfriend of Lauren's.
  • Kristin Cavallari, a Laguna Beach alum like Lauren and an aspiring actress. She became a replacement for Lauren in season five.
  • Stephanie Pratt, Spencer's sister. Her appearances on The Soup via Adam Westing later turned her into a Breakout Character.

The Hills was a hit for MTV, with some of the highest ratings of any show on cable. Even though its ratings declined from its early peaks, it is still regarded as one of MTV's most popular shows. MTV Canada personalities Daniel Levy and Jessi Cruickshank hosted The After Show, which was often about The Hills and is credited with being one of the first post-show talk shows. The Hills also managed to earn itself a sizable hatedom when it was airing, and earned a reputation for being staged and vapid. It is one of The Soup's favorite targets of mockery.


The show was later given a Revival in the form of 2019's The Hills: New Beginnings, in which many of the cast members (save for Lauren, who declined to appear) are followed years later, having married or had children in the interim.


  • All Men Are Perverts: Brody Jenner and his posse, especially his friend Frankie. In one episode, Frankie declares that a woman will be able to go back into "his rotation" of women he dates.
  • Canon Discontinuity: The final scene of the original series, in so much as MTV actively refusing to air it again. Online versions of the ending cut the final scene off after Kristin leaves in a taxi, omitting the final shots of the set dressing being taken down around Brody Jenner, and The Reveal that the scene (and possibly parts of the series) were filmed on a backlot. The only ending currently available to view on MTV's Youtube channel is the alternate ending, which has Brody immediately visit Lauren at her apartment after saying goodbye to Kristin. Likewise, the Revival completely ignores the final shots of the original series.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Heidi and Spencer. The two of them appeared on the Alex Jones Show, where they discussed 9/11 conspiracy theories and microchip implants, and Heidi obsessed over the "Mark of the Beast."
  • Coolest Club Ever and In Da Club: All da time. Particularly the (now closed) Les Deux club where the infamous fight between Lauren and Heidi happened.
  • Current Events Blog: Cast member Audrina had one of these during the show's run. There are also many gossip blogs that follow the show; some of them have revealed the sneaky editing and manipulated situations in both this series and Laguna Beach.
  • The Ditz: Heidi.
  • Fanservice: Obviously, given the women on the show. Especially Heidi, given her feelings towards plastic surgery. (Including her desire to get breast implants the size of H-cups, "H for Heidi.")
  • Gainax Ending: Revealing that the show had been filmed on a backlot and not answering what was real or fake. The fandom were not pleased.
  • Gay Paree: When Whitney and Lauren visit Paris for a Teen Vogue event, they party at a fancy French nightclub, drink champagne at the Eiffel Tower, and attend an illustrious ball.
  • "Get out of Jail Free" Card: The antics committed by Lauren and Whitney at their Teen Vogue internship (screwing up basic orders, letting their friends into exclusive Hollywood parties, mangling the tasks they were given) would have been enough to get them canned several times over. However, they are always inexplicably given a free pass by the managing editor of the magazine because they are reality television stars.
  • Hollywood, California
  • It's for a Book: On many occasions.
  • Manipulative Editing: Overdubbed lines, temporal shenanigans, reshot sequences that don't match with the rest of the show... it's all here.
  • The Parody: MADtv's The Hills parody.
  • Peer Pressure Makes You Evil: Jen, one of Lauren's friends, falls under the influence of Heidi. Heidi then convinces to Jen to reject Lauren and "hook up" with Brody (who Lauren was dating at that time).
  • Product Placement: During the scenery transition sequences, the names and songs of the bands playing in the background are displayed in the lower-right corner of the screen, along with a prompt to visit MTV's website to buy the music. Cell phones (from carriers like T-Mobile and AT&T) and clothing are also prominently showcased throughout the series.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: "Unwritten" by Natasha Bedingfield. A rather... interesting choice for a reality show that has been accused many times of being staged.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: As evidenced by the volume of information discovered via interviews with cast members and current event blogs, the show was especially guilty of this:
    • The issue of all the paparazzi who hung out in front of Lauren's house waiting for her to come out so that they could take photos of her is never brought up, and the audience is expected to believe that she lives in anonymity.
    • Several episodes have characters confronting (and even fighting with) each other in clubs; most notably, Lauren and Heidi's shouting match in a club midway through the second season. This incident in particular was heavily reported on by gossip blogs, and it was rumored that cops had to be dispatched to the location to keep the peace. In the show, all of these incidents are played as minor inconveniences that have no bearing or consequence on anything that happens afterwards.
    • Lauren stated outright that she was not on the receiving end of Spencer's "I'm sorry" phone call.
    • Audrina Patridge (who went to high school 20+ miles away from Lauren) has admitted she was "cast" as Lauren's best friend, having never met her before.
    • Heidi never applied for and accepted the job at Bolthouse Studios (where she "works" for the first three seasons); the producers worked out an agreement with the studios to have her come into the office and pretend to work as an intern for a certain amount of hours every week (while they filmed it).
    • Spencer getting in bar fights and the police not getting involved is also quite strange.
  • Reality Show: Presented as such, but there is more evidence supporting the theory that it's scripted than there is supporting the idea that it's real.
  • Retool: The show was originally about Lauren trying to juggle school, work and romance along with her three friends (who also worked). When Kristin replaced Lauren, the show switched focus onto anyone who has ever spoken to Lauren (Brody, Spencer, Lo, Stephanie) and was no longer pretending that any of these people had anything remotely resembling a real job.
  • Rich Bitch: Everyone, but Heidi in particular.
  • Rich Idiot With No Day Job: Several, but mostly Spencer
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Again, Spencer
  • Serial Escalation: How much plastic surgery can Heidi get?
    • The producers seem to understand this trope, as an entire episode was dedicated to the disbelief everyone (including Heidi's friends and family) expresses when she reveals her new look. Said episode also turns out to be one of the few "real" moments of the series, as Heidi's mother cries and says she doesn't recognize her own daughter anymore.
  • Spinoff: Of Laguna Beach. Also, this show has its own spinoff, The City.
  • Time-Compression Montage
  • 24-Hour Party People: Rarely ever do you see these people working or doing anything productive.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: When it's all funded by MTV, why not?
    • according to Heidi, MTV didn’t allow the girls to rewear outfits but also didn’t give them a wardrobe, necessitating her shopping at thrift stores for her 'unlimited wardrobe' in the first season, before her income from the show allowed her this for real.
  • Unreliable Voiceover: There are several times in the series when what the audience hears voiceovers (in regards to previous episodes) that in no way accurately reflected what went on in said episodes.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Stephen (from Laguna Beach) appears in a Very Special Episode, making an appearance at Lauren's party and rekindling his feelings for her.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Audrina and Justin, Lauren and Jason, Kristin and Brody...yawn.
  • With Friends Like These...: Lauren and Heidi. Just... Lauren and Heidi.
  • You Keep Using That Word: On too many occasions.


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