Last night saw the premiere of MTV's latest docusoap, The Electric Barbarellas, which follows the members of a girl band searching for their big break. It's well-trodden territory, not unlike Making the Band or The Search for the Next Doll and so forth. Except The Electric Barbarellas (which was creepily strong-armed onto the air by Viacom chairman Sumner Redstone) is far phonier than those shows, somehow distilling all the worst qualities of an MTV reality series into one hypercontrived, superstaged, and hair-extensioned mess. Why do they have to live together? How does the leader afford a house and an assistant? If none of them can sing that well, why do they have a singing group? And is there someone just off camera, shouting out reality staples and ticking them off of a checklist as the girls act them out? ("Now get in the hot tub! Now backstab! Now fight! Okay, we just have to do hugging, making out, and five usages of the word 'journey' and we can all call it a day!") Even in the altered world of reality television, this strains the limits of credulity. We've compiled the most bafflingly contrived moments from the series premiere, which features absolutely zero moments of singing. The rest was merely annoying.
Most Viewed Stories
The 100 Jokes That Shaped Modern Comedy
Every Coen Brothers Movie, Ranked From Worst to Best
Just Another Moment You Wish Judge Judy Were Your Mom
Matt Czuchry’s Logan Will Return for the Gilmore Girls Revival
The Curious Decline of Paul Mooney
When Adele Was Young, She Was Just Cute Little Toothless Adele Adkins, As Seen on Her New Single Art
The Big Bang Theory Recap: Meet the Meemaw
Jessie J Says She’s Considered ‘One of the Greatest Singers’ in America, Which Is Like Sending Yourself Flowers to Make Your Crush Jealous
The Rocky Horror Picture Show Cast Takes Their 40th-Anniversary Reunion Photo
Fox Just Gave the Lonely Island Their Own SNL
Latest News from VultureHow Comedy Finally Caught Up to Female Comedians
Things have changed since Elayne Boosler.Samuel L. Jackson, Mad Max, and Susan Sontag: My Road Trip With A.O. Scott
I arrived at his house in Prospect–Lefferts Gardens around 8:15, and we set out in his blue Subaru.Samantha Bee on Diversity: ‘The F*cking Thing You Have to Do Is Just Hire People’
“It's not really the most complicated transaction."The Friday Night Lights 10-Year Reunion Is Happening in Austin Because Texas Forever
Clear eyes, full hair.Meek Mill Avoids Jail, But Will Spend 90 Days on House Arrest for Violating Probation
Amen!Your Boyfriends Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Channing Tatum Are Making a Movie-Musical About Pilots Who Sing and Dance
Swoon.American Idol Recap: Final Judgement
I am Team Johnson. Or Team Blosil. Or maybe Team Bourg.Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz on ’N Sync Nostalgia, Rockism, and His Super Bowl Pick
"To me, I look at artists like Skrillex, and that guy is rock and roll."Kate del Castillo Feels ‘Betrayed’ and ‘Used’ by Sean Penn Because of His El Chapo Article
Traidor!Netflix Will Debut David Lynch–Produced Doc My Beautiful Broken Brain on March 18, Also Known As the Day You Cry the Hardest in Your Brief, Wonderful Life
About filmmaker Lotje Sodderland's recovery from a stroke.
Poldark's popularity lies firmly at the arms-and-abs combo of its leading man.Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Commits to Its Premise But Falls Short Where It Counts
You can enjoy the film — well, parts of it — as a middling stock production with flurries of gore to break the monotony.Why Richard Pryor Marks the Beginning of the Modern Comedy Era
Comedy is divided by before Richard Pryor: Live in Concert and after Richard Pryor: Live in Concert.The 100 Recap: The 13th Clan
Lexa is the only person who really understands Clarke.Rihanna Joins List of Grammy Performers, So Go Ahead and Cancel Your President’s Day Plans. Those Discounted Mattresses Can Wait.
Please let her do "Love on the Brain." Please let her do "Love on the Brain."The Coen Brothers’ Star-Packed Hail, Caesar! Feels Overdeliberate
This milieu begs for a loose, scattershot tone, one in which every line isn’t archly parodic.Every Coen Brothers Movie, Ranked From Worst to Best
Nearly every Coen Brothers film treads the same themes, but you’d never mistake one for another.Kanye Says Father-in-Law Robert Kardashian Is Helping Him Finish His Album From Heaven, and Who Are We to Tell Him Any Different?
“He's still doing deals for controversial black people from up in heaven.”That Book #Girlboss You Liked Is Going to Become a Netflix Show You Also Probably Like
With Pitch Perfect's Kay Cannon as showrunner.Jonathan Krisel on Building the Visual Worlds of TV’s Weirdest Comedies
"Fred is our special effect."