“The Bay State:” Boston’s answer to “Jersey Shore?”

Photo courtesy Jeremy Weiner

By Olivia Hesslein

News Correspondent

If MTV’s “Jersey Shore” and Boston college students had a kid, the result would be “The Bay State,” a new web reality show set in Boston with eight lively college students at its center. The show is produced by Jeremy Weiner, a junior professional writing and English major at Fitchburg State University, and episodes are released on YouTube every Wednesday. The four episodes posted so far collectively have over 1,500 views, and the show has ambitions of someday being on television.
“The Bay State” follows the antics of Massachusetts residents taking on Boston culture and nightlife.  The show is filmed with a hand camera, so it’s like watching your own friends. Haverhill locals Brianna Kelly, Benjamin Simmers, Raeann Sullivan, Eric McDonald, Jenn Derrico, Kevin Swanson and Tayla DiPrima, as well as Weiner himself star in the show. This interesting web of friends and love interests serve as the breeding ground for drama as these rowdy and exuberant twenty-somethings take on Boston.
The start of the season takes place during the Stanley Cup finals, and follows the cast – all die-hard Bruins fans – as they cheer on their favorite team. Episode one, aptly named “We Want the Cup,” shows the gang getting together to cheer on the black and gold as they take on Vancouver. Passionate fans, they cling to every hit and goal, cheering on the players and yelling at the television as if they were in the arena themselves.
During the friendly gathering, cast member Ben is starting to talk to a new girl, Raeann. The guys don’t know what to think about a new girl entering into their circle. Social drama rules in reality shows like this one and what better way is there to stir the waters than to add someone new to the mix?
In episode two, “The Flaws in the Plan,” the group heads to Boston for the Bruins’ victory parade. Driving up the night before for some Boston nightlife, they crash in an apartment of a friend, Nathan, who’s dating cast member Jenn. The scene plays out like any typical college house party: Too little space in the apartment, too many people and too much alcohol.  In the early hours of the morning, the group makes their way to Mission Hill – Northeastern’s own party central.  After alcohol-induced tempers wear thin, the haggard partiers make their way back to the apartment for a few hours of sleep.
The next morning starts with the breakfast of champions: Shots.
Some fare better than others – unfortunately for Ben, shots are not what his body called for. With passed out party-goers strewn all over the living room floor, the parade doesn’t seem to be in the cards. But like any Boston college student, they find that running on no sleep and rallying is no problem, and take off to celebrate.
The antics of “The Baystaters” sound like an average college student’s weekend. The handheld camera reveals what fellow Boston students worry about, obsess over and party for. Watching their drama unfold is comical, like watching a video tape of one’s own Friday night.
Unlike “Jersey Shore,” there are no tearful confessionals. The cast does not live completely under one roof, which serves as a breeding ground for disaster. “The Bay State” is just eight kids filming themselves trying to have some fun.