Made in Chelsea: London’s answer to The Hills and the ‘classier’ version of The Only Way is Essex. We were all taken in by the glitz and the glam of London’s ‘elite’ when the show first debuted back in 2011, but the question is, why are we still watching it? The show is infamous for its ridiculously long awkward silences that make it glaringly obvious that the show is scripted and that the cast are terrible at acting. But we still come back for more.
Essentially, MIC follows the lives of an affluent bunch of young twenty-somethings who seem to lay idle for most of the day, talking about relationships and bitching about each other. Most of them met at school (the likes of Harrow, Eton, Radley, Downe House etc.) and it’s very much of a case of everyone knows everyone. The general vibe of the show has slipped into the realm of we’re-doing-absolutely-nothing-but-at-least-we-look-pretty-doing-it, but given that heartthrobs Spencer Matthews and Jamie Laing are heirs to the Eton Rock Hotel and McVitie’s respectively, I guess these guys don’t need jobs.
This is the sort of show that advertises the name of each and every bar or restaurant at the bottom of the screen with each scene change, but as each new season has aired, this feature seems to have become more and more obnoxious.
They also seem to have forgotten that there are other places to hang out in London that aren’t Bluebird in Mayfair.
What’s worse is that numerous tour companies have taken advantage of this and for a mere £20 you can even go on a Made in Chelsea Walking Tour around London’s SW3. Bargain. Another company is advertising a tour that begins in Sloane Square and ends up in, you guessed it, Bluebird.
There are numerous completely unnecessary characters that aren’t part of the core friendship group on the show, and are hated by everyone. They seem to be quite obnoxious and yet are still on screen each week. Why hasn’t Victoria hit the road yet? She serves no purpose except to bitch about everyone and everything – but we get plenty of that from the rest of the cast anyway. Victoria’s only friend on the show, Mark Francis, is equally useless but a thousand times funnier so I’ll forgive his continued presence. He’s the sort of guy who, when asked what sort of book he’d be, replies “Well, I’d probably be the Bible”. Modest, as ever.
There was even the spin-off, MIC: NYC, where the gang headed off to New York for a season in which absolutely nothing changed. Series 7 was the first series of Made in Chelsea to average over 1 million viewers for each episode whereas spin-off series NYC had a series average of over 1 million viewers, which just goes to show that MIC is heading downhill.
What is frustrating is that, this show was actually good at one point. It’s even won a BAFTA.
Gone are the days of the Caggie and Spencer drama when the show was still vaguely based on reality (even if it had been filmed for the 6th time that afternoon). Now, everyone’s dated everyone, everyone’s cheated on everyone and everyone’s broken up with everyone. The cast of MIC is possibly the most incestuous bunch of friends that television has ever seen and there’s no sign of them stopping anytime soon.
I’m not going to pretend like I still don’t love the show, but I kind of hate myself for it. I know that it’s all complete and utter rubbish and yet I still find myself tuning in to E4 on Monday nights to catch the latest episode. Not only that but I follow the more interesting characters on Instagram anwd Twitter because my weekly one hour fix just isn’t enough. This needs to stop. It’s all just one big PR stunt and we need to stop buying into it. Imperial students see MIC characters walking around South Kensington all the time. If you live in London, you probably know someone that knows someone that knows a member of the cast. These people don’t lead lives that are nearly as extraordinary as television makes them out to be so we should stop treating them like celebrities and accept that they are actually normal people who just happen to have a lot of money.
Series 9 airs on the 9th April 2015.