Get ready to watch “UnReal,” Lifetime’s newest scripted series which will make you question why you’re still watching shows like “The Bachelorette.” In “UnReal,” Shiri Appleby (“Life Unexpected”) and Constance Zimmer (“Entourage”) play a match made in reality-TV heaven (or hell, depending how you look at it). Together they make a scripted dating show called “Everlasting," but does their work do more damage than good? Or is just the ratings that matter?
Ahead of the premiere of the “UnREAL,” here are six things you need to know about the series:
1. The suitor is a British millionaire. In order to spruce up his bad boy image Adam Cromwell (Freddie Stroma), a British heir to a hotel fortune, agrees to star on “Everlasting.” While it appears he’s having the time of his life hooking up and meeting dozens of single and eligible woman on the show, his troubled home life will eventually rear its head.
2. The show’s crew are the stars. Unlike most dating shows, “UnREAL” sheds on a light on the program’s crew. While the contestants on the fake dating show will gain some time in the spotlight on their quest to find love, it will be Appleby, who plays a disgraced television producer Rachel, her love interest Jeremy (Josh Kelly), and her tough-as-nails boss Quinn (Zimmer) who will ultimately steal the show.
3. It will be dark. While dating shows are typically light, “UnREAL” will touch on some of life’s darker moments. One of Quinn's conquests will suffer a medical emergency mid-coitus, Rachel's mental disorders will be revealed and the contestants will deal with issues ranging from abusive ex-husbands to eating disorders. One girls actions will eventually catch the attention of the show’s psychologist, Dr. Wagerstein (Amy Hill).
4. Many Bachelor/Bachelorette-esque elements. There are no rose ceremonies on “UnREAL," but there are elements that make it nearly impossible not to think of ABC’s long-running hit reality series “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette.” From a well-spoken host Graham, played by Brennan Elliot, (Chris Harrison, anyone?), to a set based at a luxury estate, group and single dates, and weird introductions, it isn’t hard to figure out where Lifetime found their inspiration for the scripted series.
5. Anna and Grace will be frontrunners. Anna (Johanna Braddy) and Grace (Nathalie Kelley) will eventually have it out in episode 3 in their quest to win Adam's (Stroma) heart. After Rachel informs Anna of her competitor’s behind-the-scenes behavior, Anna will be gifted an on-camera slap from Grace after confronting her about her alleged actions. Will Adam chose the blonde beauty who is suffering from a great loss, or Grace, the spicy Latina who makes her love for her suitor well-known?
6. Race will play a role. It hasn’t gone unnoticed that shows like “The Bachelor” star few minorities. As "Bachelorette" Season 11 contestant Kupah recently put it, he didn't want to kept on the ABC series' eleventh season in order to fill a “minority quota.” On “UnREAL,” the situation is no different. In the premiere episode, Quinn has a fit when the first contestant who meets Adam is an African-American girl named Shaniqua (Christie Lang), saying, "The first girl out of the carriage is always a wifey and that is not a wifey."
"It's not my fault that America's racist," Quinn explains in episode 1.
"UnREAL" Season 1 premieres Monday at 10 p.m. EDT on Lifetime. Catch the first nine minutes of episode 1 below.