Trendysomething in SoMo
Hipsters on the water: Watch The NovSco, the alt-Jersey Shore
A week has passed since the release of The Rules According to JWOWW, facilitating a range of introspection and indulging in fruit-flavored shots. The "shore-tested" advice of Jenni "JWOWW" Farley provides groundbreaking insight on surviving hangovers (JWOWW prescribes sleep) and neologisms such as, "reheated pasta never tastes the same" (as in, don't try to rekindle romance).
Last week also marked the mass proliferation of the hipster Ariel the Little Mermaid meme, in which bloggers superimpose hipster language onto a thick-rimmed bespectacled Disney marine character. The result was a torrent of puns the likes of, "I WANT TO BE WHERE THE PBR" and "I use eating utensils for my hair . . . brushes are too mainstream."
These convergent cultural phenomenon, combined with a recent rediscovery of the Pomegranate phone commercial, has led to the development of a new reality television series based loosely around the concept of Jersey Shore, in which eight hipster housemates spend their summer in a (no-enivronmental-impact) cabin on the coast of Nova Scotia: The NovSco.
Gone are the guido affectations — this cast is all about the hopelessly obscure and tragically hip:
Aristotle is a Ph.D candidate in Human Rights Studies at Hampshire College with a habit of showing off his tattoos (written in Aleutian) when inebriated. If you get him drunk enough, he'll admit to having once liked Arcade Fire.
Evelyn B describes herself as a "sand artist" hailing from Santa Fe. Ev is what some might call a "burnout" who spends her days sleeping in and nights making ill-conceived bottles filled with artificially-colored sand. Her taste for Hostess pastries comes under sharp attack by her fellow housemates. She suffers from a tendency to hallucinate that she is Zooey Deschanel.
Dorothea is an assistant at an anarchist hair salon in Bushwick, Brooklyn who moonlights as a flautist in her boyfriend's buzz band, The Angry Birds. She attempts to use her degree in printmaking from RISD to get out of work and convince indie boys to buy her PBR.
Angelina Pivarnick: The bête noir of Seasons 1 and 2 of Jersey Shore has been picked up by TheNovSco for the sake of irony and the producers' natural affinity for outcasts and Staten Island accents.
Jon (pronounced "Yawn"): Jon is "bicoastal" in that he maintains residences in Montreal and Oakland. He's also noncommittally bisexual, and has a habit of skipping work, opting to ride his fixed gear bike to a quiet cove and perfect the sonnets he writes for Evelyn B and/or Aristotle.
Jasper has an unplaceable accent that situates him as originating somewhere between Iceland and Austria, but he says his film work takes him to all corners of the globe. The cast laments when Jasper leaves mid-season to attend to a microbrewery and chateau that he has inherited in the foothills of the Green Mountains.
Skye is a barista from East Austin who readily quotes Chuck Palahniuk books (never the movies) and finds it difficult to complete a sentence without mentioning her time working as a social worker in the Palestinian Authority. She neglects to share that this was a four day stint, followed by a luxury cruise tour of the Adriatic facilitated by leftover student loans.
The eighth roommate is very aloof and never appears onscreen.
Inter-cast conflict is a way of life on the set of reality shows, and The NovSco is no exception.
Even in the first episode, fighting erupts when Jon leaves his dishes in the sink and Evelyn B hooks up with Jasper in Aristotle's bed, all resulting in a pair of smashed Wayfarers and hummus on the kitchen ceiling. When things get really heated, the cast utilizes the cabin's opossum-shaped phone to contact relatives to ask for a raise or long distance lovers who are working on their activism in the outskirts of D.F.
Otherwise, the cabinmates busy themselves with very short shifts at their prescribed job, which involves harvesting seashells from the frigid North Atlantic waters and compiling them into table-side lamps and vinyl record players. Whatever product is left unsold after Saturday farmers markets is put on their Etsy page.
Wild nights in NovSco consist of knitting, ironic karaoke of 90s boy bands in dive bars, and playing broomball on the boardwalk while broadcasting Beach House at a low volume.
The show is a runaway success, and the stars find themselves instant indie celebrities. Nevertheless, plans of filming a second season of The NovSco in Marfa are scrapped when the cast realizes that the show has become too mainstream.
Aristotle drops out of his Ph.D program to stay on the Nova Scotia coast and make dreamcatchers. Evelyn B turns her love of casual sex and cannabis into a lucrative organic sex products business. Dorothea absconds with The Angry Birds on their tour of the Pacific Rim. Jon forms a domestic partnership with a high school substitute teacher and anti-gentrification activist he meets in Halifax, although he will always hold a candle for Aristotle. Jasper is never heard from again, Skye becomes a CORE fellow at the Glassell School of Art, and Angelina returns to Staten Island.