An interview with Bravo’s Lara Spotts about ‘The People’s Couch’

By Natan Edelsburg 

This weekend Bravo is launching a TV show about watching TV. This exciting mini-series is “based on the successful UK show, ‘Gogglebox,'”. According to the network’s release, ‘The People’s Couch’ is a new three-episode, limited series that features real people watching and commenting on popular shows and news from the past week.” We interviewed Lara Spotts Bravo’s Vice President of Development about the new show.

Lost Remote: Why is social TV important?
Lara Spotts: Social TV is an incredible tool that’s changed what was a passive viewing experience into a communal one.  We can go to Twitter and Facebook to find out what to watch, what others think about it and even to reach out to the people on tv who we’re watching!

LR: Why do you think this concept will work in the US?
Spotts: Americans today love three things: 1. watching television, 2. peeking behind closed doors to see what others are doing and 3. cracking their blinds so that others can see what they are doing.  And while social tv has turned watching television into a conversation, it’s so far been relegated to a second screen experience.  We see THE PEOPLE’S COUCH as an exciting, groundbreaking way to bring that conversation back to tv… literally.

LR: What is engaging about watching people watch TV?
Spotts: I know it sounds esoteric and strange in theory but you won’t believe how engaging it is to watch people watching tv: sometimes it’s as simple as a facial reaction, sometimes it’s a tangent inspired by what they’re watching, sometimes it’s the weird thing they do because they’re in the comfort of their own home… like cracking the toes of the person sitting next to them.  (Yes, this actually happened on our second night of filming.)  But mostly, it’s incredibly relatable.  It is a mirror into our own living room… and into the living rooms of our neighbor, dermatologist, hairdresser, etc.

LR: Who are the people we will be watching watch TV?
Spotts: We are featuring a range of households including Persian sisters, gay best friends, Tina and Tarzu – with little baby Tarzie – from Bravo’s series Newlyweds: The First Year, even a family with two teenage sons who all watch television in bed together.  The goal was to create a fun and diverse  snapshot of tv lovers.