MTV's Faking It, returning tonight for its second season, is a show everyone should be watching. Now, it's not required viewing – I generally oppose the idea that any show is necessary for those outside of those who need to be well-versed in a broad spectrum of television (like critics). If it's not to your taste, avoid it at will! Do you, because no one can tell you not to.
But even if not everyone has to watch MTV's Faking It, they should be. Because it is doing so much more with its premise than you'd expect – in ways prestige shows could really learn from.
The original premise was such: Amy (Rita Volk) and Karma (Katie Stevens) are nobodies at a liberal Austin high school, where "normal" is ignored and the alternative is celebrated. They decide to fake being lesbian lovers to get attention. One problem: Amy isn't really into this plan, because as she discovers about herself, she has feelings for Karma beyond just friendship.
That twist, included in the show's first episode, was enough to endure any bits of bad taste and stick around. The first season gingerly, honestly, and refreshingly explored Amy's sexuality, without reaching any easy or definite answers. Meanwhile, Karma started having a fling with Liam (Gregg Sulkin), but he was primarily attracted to her because he couldn't really have her. There were a great deal of conflicting dynamics at play, especially when you started to consider the (stellar) supporting cast – and it was all very high-level for a MTV show aimed at teens.