just like the snowglobe
I've actively watched maybe an aggregate of 90 minutes of The Hills through it's run on MTV, so admittedly I'm not the best person to weigh in on what they did with the finale. But still...
As Kristin Cavallari pulled away, off to Europe to "find" herself, pal and former flame Brody Jenner stood on an empty LA street to watch her go. It was a bittersweet, emotional moment. But then the backdrop rolled away, the cameras panned out, and we saw that Jenner was now standing on a Hollywood lot, surrounded by crews, and that Cavallari's car was parked just a few feet away. She got out, they hugged, and that was that.
Love it. My friend David Jacobs quipped that The Hills managed to create the reality TV equivalent of St. Elsewhere's snowglobe. The shot of the snowglobe at the end of that series implied that the entire show had been the product of Tommy Westphall's imagination. The Hills ending with a pan to expose the Hollywood lot implies that the entire show had been the product of Adam DiVello's imagination. Which, of course, everyone knew....but willfully ignored.
While it lasts, Here's a YouTube clip of the ending.
PS: Styleite argues that MTV did this same thing seven years ago with the finale of season two of The Osbournes.
PPS: The Awl does a nice recap of the finale. "In that final moment, the producers defied the odds, and succeeded, however briefly, in making The Hills interesting one more time."