Monday brings a round of Good News, Bad News for UnREAL fans. Lets start with the positive: the shows Bachelor in Paradise–inspired fourth season is now available to stream, in full, on Hulu. Unfortunately, this season will be the dramas final bow.
Hulu confirmed in a press release that the drama, which aired its first three chapters on Lifetime, has officially moved to Hulu for its final wrap-up season. Co-creator Sarah Gertrude Shapiro and show-runner Stacy Rukeyser are both back, and Constance Zimmer, who stars as Quinn, directs one episode. Shiri Appleby, who plays Rachel, directs two episodes, including the series finale.
When it first premiered, UnREAL was a TV sensation—and a boon to Lifetime, which has recently rebranded itself from a “guilty-pleasure” network to a home for more serious, critically appreciated fare. The series has won a Peabody Award, an A.F.I. Award, and two Emmy nominations. (In 2016, Zimmer received a supporting-actress nod, and the series itself received a writing nomination as well.) But recent seasons have not wowed critics as much as its debut; Season 2 was largely panned, and included a widely derided police-shooting story line. Season 3, which was based on The Bachelorette, was generally better received, but it did not quite manage to recapture the magic of Season 1.
This farewell feels somewhat unceremonious for a series that was, at least at one time, so widely celebrated—but the shows cast and crew seem to support the decision.
Speaking with Variety, Shapiro said she and her team were excited that fans would get to binge-watch the new season so soon after the conclusion of Season 3, which wrapped on Lifetime just months ago: “Bingeing feels like the truth to me right now, and Im really happy to [tell the story] this way,” she said. In his own e-mail to Vulture, actor Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman said that he was also thrilled with the decision. “Fans can enjoy the brilliant insanity of our show complete with the nail-biting binge-worthy experience they deserve,” he wrote. “Everyone involved is so pleased with the way weve wrapped up these characters stories, and Im sure the audience will be just as satisfied.”
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