When it debuted back in 2009, Jersey Shore captured the attention of the country precisely because we’d never seen something so singularly trashy and deliciously unapologetic on television before. These were people you maybe came across at a bar, ordering double-digit shots and picking fights over nothing, and wondered what their daily existence might be like. Chose seven of those characters to live together in a house, their personalities casted to perfectly embroil, entice, and imbibe with one another, and construct scenarios with as much alcohol and drama legally possible.
Also there was a duck phone.
But now we have the internet. You can see 20-somethings make fools of themselves willingly on Instagram accounts like @5thyear and @drunkpeopledoingthings. Social media almost ruins the cultural functionality of something like Jersey Shore. But reality TV can provide something social media overwhelmingly fails at, which is constructing an engaging narrative.
Despite some try-hard pop stars asking to be excuse from this narrative, our brains won’t allow it. (That we attempt to refuse cultural narratives as they are and instead push ourselves to believe ones lacking in scope of facts and characters might explain why this country’s so dang ornery all the time, but…maybe this isn’t the right conversation to have in a MTV reality show article). We love narratives and stories more than anything; it’s how we make sense of the world and that Joan Didion jazz.
Which is why MTV and SallyAnn Salsano, executive producer and creator of Jersey Shore, wants to recreate the magic with their new show Floribama Shore. It features eight Southern kids in Panama City Beach—the filthy, debauchery-laden party town that served as inspiration for Spring Breakers—as they party and “put the real world on hold for just a little bit longer.”
According to the producers, each cast member “is armed with incredible life experiences and standing at a crossroads, whether it’s ending a relationship, tasting independence for the first time, or trying to escape the past. This coming of age story captures the very real thrill and angst of being young and trying to figure out the future with a group of people you’ll come to call family.”
Sound familiar? As they say, cabs are here—er, Ubers are here! With as many reboots and reimagining’s as the media/entertainment complex keeps churning out, you shouldn’t be surprised that Jersey Shore would eventually undergo that treatment. Why wouldn’t MTV want to recycle the biggest reality TV show of all time?
The company released a short teaser trailer to announce Floribama Shore. The duck phone has transformed into the gator phone. Really, what more do you need to know?