The “Rolling Stone” Reality Show: Some Random Notes On The First Episode

Brian Raftery | December 27, 2006 - 2:26 am

takethejannwayhome.jpgWe’ve just finished watching the first two episodes of I’m From Rolling Stone, the upcoming MTV reality show in which six young wannabe magazine writers are hired to work at Rolling Stone. And our verdict?

It’s not that terrible.

Granted, it will make you hate every person under the age of 25–not because of jealousy, mind you, but because that generation has now managed to discover a form of self-involvement that runs even deeper than narcissism. And you’ll have to accept the idea that most young music fans would rather work at the Stone than start their own record label or blogging empire.

But as far as MTV reality shows go, it’s far less gimmicky and manipulative than usual: They’re not trying to coax a romance or a race war out of the contestants, and the show does capture the day-to-day drudgery of working at a music magazine, which involves a lot of last-minute jaunts to none-too-sexy locales to interview stoned miscreants. And while several of the show’s “stars” are extroverted brats who couldn’t compose a T.O.C. without name-dropping themselves, they’re just the sort of nitshits who are overtaking the publishing world these days. It’s sad, but at least it’s realistically sad.

And so, after two episodes, we give it a Wenner-appropriate three stars. Some other highlights:

- By far, the “breakout star”–meaning the person who conjures up the most throat-scarring amount of bile–is Krishtine, the Oakland-area poet and hip-hop journalist who asks Jann Wenner how to pronounce his name (“Ian?”) and spends her first few days on the phone talking about how she wants to make herself a celebrity on the hip-hop scene. We look forward to never looking forward to anything by her.
– Every form of awkward Q&A style is covered: There’s the “Dude, like, I don’t have any questions?” sit-down; the “I’m from the street, yo” cred-proving session; and the “Ohmigod, we get along so well, we should totally be friends!” love-in.
– So far, the only Stone staffers getting a lot of screen time are Jann “Ian” Wenner, Joe “When Joe Levy Breaks” Levy, and Alex “Nothing Funny About My Name” Mar.
– There are at least two references to hyphy, which is treated as the new cool hip-hop sensation of the year, even though it was already out of date by the time the second episode was in the can.