There isn’t a subject too out there for reality show producers to mine for TV gold — a family of duck-call experts, a group of earnest Americans prepping for Armageddon and now the 2016 presidential election.
Next week, eight politically minded millennials — all strangers, of course — will move into a Capitol Hill rowhouse for one month to hash out their ideological differences while the cameras roll. The show, cheekily titled “House Divided,” will be produced by Fullscreen Media, a “global youth media company” based in Los Angeles.
“It’ll be like ‘Big Brother’ meets the ‘Real World’ but with politics,” explained a rep from Fullscreen. So expect tears and drama at some point. Basically what happens when folks stop being politically correct and start getting real.
The first ingredient in classic reality-show soup is always the house. We’re told the five-bedroom converted schoolhouse with a pool and roof top deck near Lincoln Park is appropriately “insane.” The kind of glammed-up frat house reality fans have come to expect of crazy roommates-meet-crazy roommates shows.
Next in the pot goes the cast.
“Most of the people in the series are very ‘polarizing,’ ” explained the Fullscreen rep. Full identities haven’t been disclosed yet, but the “character” bios we got a peek at sound like a casting director’s dream.
There’s the 18-year-old gay black Republican who will probably vote for Donald Trump, the Libertarian Ivy League beauty queen, the Middle Eastern Democrat who got kicked out of a Trump rally for brandishing a “love Trumps hate” sign, and of course, there’s the bartender from the District who says he has never met a Trump supporter.
In between sharing a roof, going out on the town (look out H Street) and doing volunteer work, this motley crew will dive into “hot button issues” such as abortion, racial discrimination, gun violence, transgender rights, climate change and immigration.
The goal of all this — besides an entertaining live reenactment of awkward Thanksgiving conversations — according to Fullscreen, will explore whether millennials, the generation all older generations love to mock, “can do a better job than our elected officials, and change minds through conversation.”
It’s a lofty goal for a reality show, excuse us, “unscripted series,” but stranger things have happened, and one need only look at the current presidential campaign for evidence of that.
“House Divided” begins shooting July 20 (look for the cameras in and around Capitol Hill) and is scheduled to air on Fullscreen sometime in the fall.