In keeping with its tradition of edgy programming, MTV is launching a new scripted show called “Faking It,” created by Dana Min Goodman and Julia Wolov, about two teen girls, Amy (Rita Volk) and Karma (“American Idol” alum Katie Stevens), who are best friends and love each other … in slightly different ways.
The two end up mistakenly outed as lesbians — Amy quips in a sneak-peek clip, “I’m not gay. I don’t even like looking at my own vagina.” — but when it makes them instantly popular, Amy and Karma decide to ride the wave of new-found fame by “Faking It.”
Developer Carter Covington (“Greek,” “10 Things I Hate About You”) says that it might sound like a wild premise, but it’s actually based on many calls he fielded when he worked as a crisis counselor for the Trevor Project, a suicide prevention hotline for LGTBQ youth.
“I was shocked that some of the calls I got from kids who were worried that their friends only liked them because they were gay,” says Covington. “It’s not every high school, but attitudes are changing and tolerance is kind of viewed as an expected quality to have in many parts of the country.”
While older viewers might see this show as out there, Covington doesn’t think that today’s youth will be all that shocked by it.
“For the young people today, this show is not going to be
controversial. I genuinely think it’s going to feel like, an
exaggerated version, of course, but very much based in the world they
live in now,” says Covington.
“Kids these days don’t see the world through the eyes that I did when I was kid,” Covington continues. “But the core things stay the same: Who am I? Who do I want to be? How do I want the world to see me? Those things are only accentuated with social media.”
Covington also says that they chose to do the story with two girls because there’s something special about the closeness of female friendships. But he’d like to think this story could also work with two male characters.
“I hope [it would work with guys]. I do think that there’s still a level of bravado and machismo in society that is there. I would like to think that it’s unattractive for teen males to be bullies,” says Covington. “I think there’s a real movement in this country to make that energy not appropriate and I think that’s a good thing. I think it’s going to be really unique on television, I hope.”
“Faking It” premieres Tuesday, April 22 at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT on MTV.