The Hills - Season 1, Episode 1
Recap: Lauren is at her family home in Laguna Beach, stuffing her clothes into a big pink suitcase while voice-overing about how she's leaving this "small town with big drama" for a really big city with a whole lot more contrived drama as she studies fashion and lives with her BFF Heidi. She adds that she scored an interview for "a killer internship" with Teen Vogue, then tosses the pink suitcase in the back seat of her fancy BMW convertible and squeals off to L.A.: "the city where dreams come true".
After the opening credits with Natasha Bedingfield crooning Unwritten, Lauren arrives at Hillside Villas in West Hollywood and finds Heidi sunning herself by the pool. Heidi jumps up from her lounger, squeals, "Hiiiiiii!", and says she hasn't unpacked a single box 'cause she [is extremely lazy and] figured it should be a bonding experience for the two of them. Lauren says she really really wants to see her new digs, so the two scamper inside the complex so she can get her first look at their new home: a nondescript, unfurnished apartment that has one red wall and an impractical spiral staircase. Heidi asks Lauren what time her Teen Vogue interview is and, most importantly, how she plans to do her hair, and Lauren tells her the interview is at five o'clock and that she's going to do her hair normal. A few seconds later, someone from Teen Vogue calls to inform Lauren that the person interviewing her has an event tonight and needs her to come in twenty minutes. Lauren hangs up and puts her hand over her mouth as she fills Heidi in about her interviewer's inability to plan...and Heidi widens her eyes and snaps, "W-w-what?!" and stares back at her with her mouth agape. LOL. As Lauren rushes to the bathroom to change out of her distressed jeans and white tank top, Heidi asks her what look she's going for, and Lauren's like, "Uh, the getting-dressed-as-fast-as-I-can look" and throws on a sleek black dress, irons the skirt with her hair flattener, applies a thick layer of mascara around her eyes, and races out the door. Heidi unhelpfully yells after her, "I'll be by the pool if you need me!"
Lauren rushes over to Teen Vogue headquarters, heads up to the 12th floor, and is promptly shown to Lisa Love's spacious office. Lisa excuses herself to take a quick phone call, jots down some notes on her Vogue notepad, then asks Lauren why she wants to intern for Teen Vogue. Lauren mumbles that she's read the magazine for years, says, "Because, like, that's where I get ideas for everything I do", and adds that she likes how the magazine features a social issue that affects teens. Lisa asks her if she can write, and Lauren kind of winces before staring back at her blankly as she mumbles, "Yeah" ... and when Lisa prompts her by asking, "Good?", Lauren mutters that she enjoys writing.
Heidi and fellow Hillside Villas resident Audrina are giggling by the pool when a deflated looking Lauren returns home and gets introduced to Audrina. Lauren asks Heidi if she's unpacked any of their stuff yet, and Heidi says she's done fuck all all day 'cause she was too busy getting to know their new Hills castmate. She asks Lauren how the interview went, and Lauren shrugs and says she'll be sooooo bummed if she doesn't get the internship. Audrina smilingly says she's sure she'll get it - not least 'cause Lauren was actually featured on the cover of Teen Vogue around the time this episode aired - and Heidi tells Audrina she should start hanging with them, then shrieks, "You're adopted!"
The gals are out to dinner at the Geisha House with Jordan (Heidi's boneheaded boyfriend), David (some random friend of Lauren's I don't remember ever seeing again), and Brian (Jordan's boneheaded roommate). David tells everyone he normally works 40 hours/week, and Jordan looks horrified and says he doesn't like the idea of working for a living...and Brian concurs and says that he considers going out to fancy nightclubs his full time job. Lauren says she really really hopes that Teen Vogue calls her about her internship this week, then crosses her fingers as she says she hopes they don't leave her hanging.
Registration day at FIDM! Heidi tells Lauren she can't wait to go out on the town more, and Lauren reminds her that they're about to start school and probably won't be able to party every night. Heidi responds by making a blech face and says she can't wait to finish [the fashion degree she's about to bail on]. The Director of Admissions - Susan Aronson - comes out to greet the two and starts by inviting Lauren to come to her office for a gushy one-on-one. She compliments Lauren on her awesome grades and applauds her for landing an interview for a Teen Vogue internship. Lauren describes the opportunity to work for Teen Vogue as "like, that's the top", says she's looking forward to majoring in product development, and promises to devote all of her time and energy to her studies. When it's Heidi's turn for the one-on-one, she gigglingly tells Susan she never went to class or learned anything in high school, aspires to "do PR" and become "the fun PR girl in L.A. type of thing". Susan warns Heidi that it can take years of working in the industry to land a fun party planning type gig, and Heidi's all, "Wuh? It doesn't happen immediately?" Susan, who can barely hide her dismayed bafflement at Heidi's nitwittedness, asks her if she'd be willing to work retail, and Heidi's like, "Nope", then oddly insists that fashion is still her industry of choice. Susan asks her if she's absolutely sure she's in the right college, and Heidi unconvincingly says she's fairly certain she stumbled onto the appropriate campus.
Blaine from Teen Vogue calls Lauren to drag out the "suspense" of whether or not she's being given the internship by passing along some needless feedback about how agonizing it is for the Teen Vogue brass to choose an intern who has the requisite intelligence to answer a phone, address party invitations, and steam models' clothes at photo shoots. That said, Lisa thinks she has a lot of potential, feels she'd be a good match for the magazine, and decided it would be crazy to turn down the kind of exposure the magazine would get by being regularly featured on The Hills. Lauren excitedly accepts on the spot and is told that she starts tomorrow...and Heidi woots happily, then says, "What a frickin' relief."
The next day, Lauren arrives at Teen Vogue and is sitting in the waiting room when fellow intern Whitney arrives decked out in a pretty pink dress, accessorized with a thick brown belt and cowboy boots. The two are promptly shown to the closet office and told to sit at desks with large iMacs...and a few seconds later, Blaine and Olivia (an uptight fashion stylist) enter the room for a weird once-over of the gals' outfits. Blaine explains, "We always want to look our best for Lisa" ... and after Lauren and Whitney exchange the fuck? glances, Lauren is given a blueish jacket/shirt thing to wear over her sleeveless white top, while Whitney is chided for her "matchy matchy" Western-inspired attire and is given a new belt. The two are then deemed worthy to head over to Lisa Love's office for a lecture on the manner in which they're expected to comport themselves when they're on and off (!) the Teen Vogue clock, and are warned to never ever do anything that embarrasses the magazine.
Later, the Teen Vogue entertainment editor, Nicole, stops by the closet office to ask Lauren and Whitney to address a stack of invitations for the upcoming Young Hollywood party. The two gush delightedly at the celebrity guest list, and Lauren tells Whitney she hopes they get to attend.
While sunning themselves by the Hillside Villas pool, Lauren tells Heidi all about her first day interning, including the task of addressing the Young Hollywood party invitations. Heidi perks up at the mention of a party and asks if she can get her, Audrina, and their guy castmates in...but Lauren's like, "Uh, no", and makes it clear that she's not going to risk her internship by doing anything shady, aka sneaking a bunch of dimwitted interlopers into an exclusive Hollywood party. Heidi reacts by staring contemplatively into space with her brows furrowed and mutters, "Yeah.."
The next day at Teen Vogue, Lisa pops by the closet office to inform Lauren and Whitney that they'll be working at the Young Hollywood party: Whitney will be manning the door with a clipboard, while Lauren gets to stand around and "guard" a VIP seating area. Lisa emphasizes that they'll be working, aka not goofing off with their reality show friends or sitting down...then warns them that if she sees them "hanging out", they'll be gone. And by gone she means they'll get their hand slapped with a stern talking to followed by no further consequences.
Young Hollywood party! We get some exciting footage of celebrities - and I use the term loosely, given that I was only able to recognize Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie - arriving at the Roosevelt Hotel before the camera pans over to the VIP seating area, which Blaine is ordering Lauren to hover over so that no one sits there. Lauren gets a call on her cell from Heidi, who tells her that she brought the rest of The Hills cast and is counting on her to "sneak" them all in. Lauren's like seriously? then decides 'what could go wrong with brazenly disobeying Lisa's edict?' and tells Heidi to look for a tall blonde named Whitney at the door and introduce themselves as fellow Hills castmates [and point at the MTV camera crew filming their every move if she seems skeptical]. Whitney breezily waves them through...and after a quick walk on the red carpet past the paparazzi, Heidi rushes over to the VIP area and shrieks delightedly at the sight of Lauren - while Audrina, Jordan, and Brian make themselves comfortable on the VIP seats Lauren's supposed to be guarding from the riffraff. Lauren tells them she'll get into trouble if anyone from Teen Vogue happens to spot them sitting there...and they're all, "Yeah, we don't give a shit" and make no move to get up. Heidi wanders off to klatch with some guy named Jon-Paul, who tells her he's "shopping for a girlfriend" ... and when Heidi returns to the VIP area a few minutes later, Jordan admonishes her for always causing drama, then screeches about how Jon-Paul is trying to get in her pants. Heidi screeches back, "I didn't dooooo anything! Calm down!", to which Jordan responds by threatening to beat the guy's ass...and Blaine catches that last thing and stares over at them with his face scrunched disapprovingly. He asks Lauren whaddup with her friends' spectacle, so Lauren explains that as reality show cast members, they're expected to engage in a certain amount of arguing and misbehaving in public. She then points over at Heidi and Jordan, who have quickly made up and are now canoodling, and says, "See! It's all better." LOL. Lisa Love ambles over to stare incredulously at Lauren as she motions at the VIP area and asks, "And who are these people?" Lauren introduces everyone to an unimpressed Lisa, who sternly retorts, "Nobody should be sitting here yet. We'll talk about it on Monday." Yeesh. A stressed out Lauren barks, "Get up! Get up! Get up!" as Audrina asks if that's who she works for, then looks dismayed as she mumbles, "She got all mad." Whitney rushes over to ask Lauren if Lisa yelled at her, and the rest of the gang saunters off and leaves a distressed Lauren staring worriedly into space about her future as a Teen Vogue intern.
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4/20/2021 05:40:32 pm
Happy to see you’re covering this show!! I heard a lot about it but never watched it, and know nothing about it, except that it was kinda created to be the real-life version of The OC. I will watch it and read your recaps along! ☺️
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THE HILLS HOMEPAGE
Recapper: Isabel K. French
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