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MTV “Covers” Reality TV, Indie, and New Media


I’ve never been a big fan of MTV.  Let’s face it, it hasn’t been “Music Television” in over a decade.

However, according to the LA Times, MTV is launching a ‘new media’ series, $5 Cover, on multiple platforms (from silver screen to small screen to, er, iPod screen) that will “meld reality TV and indie cinema.” Even though the phrase ‘reality TV’ makes me throw up in my mouth a little bit, at least they’re trying, right?

$5 Cover promises to capture the flavor of the local Memphis music scene with real musicians playing themselves, orchestrated by filmmaker Craig Brewer, writer-director of “Hustle & Flow.” Check out the trailer for $5 Cover here (Oh, did I mention there’s roller derby?)

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Image from

The LA Times goes on to say…

The show, [which launched May 1]  at midnight on MTV’s cable channel and on its website,, is a fascinating experiment in new media storytelling, combining the unabashed narcissism of reality TV with the raw, rough edges of indie cinema. Until now, Web series have largely been drawn to comedy and thriller storytelling genres.

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MTV seems to be revamping the rest of their programming too, and it’s starting to look, well, a lot like one of my all-time favorite channels, CurrentTV (and it looks like they’ve noticed.) According to The New York Times, in an effort to reach its youthful audience in these times of economic crisis (read: desperate attempt to boost ratings), MTV is taking steps to add more relevant programming:

Meet MTV for the era of Obama. After years of celebrating wealth, celebrity and the vapid excesses of youth, MTV is trying to gloss its escapist entertainment with a veneer of positive social messages.

Less socialites. More substance. We’ll see if it’s enough to make me ‘want my MTV’ again.

Filed under: Current Events, New Media

3 Responses to “MTV “Covers” Reality TV, Indie, and New Media”

  • avatar
    Daniel Says:

    Loved Hustle and Flow…so there’s at least a glimmer of hope with this new venture.

  • avatar

    Too many reality shows these days.

  • avatar
    Kyle Says:

    This is similar to the $5 shows that they did in the early 00’s. It would feature a $5 show at a specific venue and the band would not be announced until they appeared at the show. (Well in theory it went that way.) It usually was on the Friday before the particular group dropped their new album the following Tuesday.(The accepted day of new releases for “records”.) So, like they have been for years, it’s nothing new for them, they just keep recycling the same thing. Hopefully it’s going to be cool.

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