After almost a decade off-screen, the friends and foes of The Hills have finally reunited to bring us The Hills: New Beginnings. At first glance, the modern reboot of the early 2000s reality television gem looks and feels very much the same, but there are some pretty obvious new developments: Lauren Conrad, Kristin Cavallari, and Lo Bosworth are noticeably absent from the drama, Spencer and Heidi Pratt have transitioned from dastardly anti-heroes to the doting millennial parents of a toddler with his own Instagram page (we didn't expect anything less from our dear Speidi), and everyone's wearing a lot less eyeliner these days. And these changes make a lot of sense—it has literally been 10 years since we last saw this group.
And yet, there is one small but curious change that many fans noticed during the season premiere of The Hills New Beginnings: Stephanie Pratt's new British (emphasis on -ish) accent.
In the first episode of the rebooted show, Stephanie's voice appears to have taken on a different lilt from what we might expect from a Los Angeles native. It's very slight, but you're not hearing things: There's definitely an accent there, and the reason behind it is pretty interesting.
After the drama of The Hills wrapped in 2010, Stephanie made a beeline for the United Kingdom, likely to find some respite from the ongoing beef between her and her brother, Spencer. (You'll remember that the Pratt sibling rivalry was a major plot point of The Hills, with Stephanie's secret friendship with LC causing a painful and very intense fracture in their family.)
Though they've made up several times over the past few years, Stephanie and Spencer are currently not on very good terms—the lasting consequences of their rift are sure to be explored on this season of The Hills: New Beginnings. "I'm trying to reconnect because it's been like eight years of us being estranged," Stephanie teased at the show's premiere party. "You might see us get on, or you might just see it go to hell."
While in London, Stephanie appeared on the British equivalent of The Hills, the reality series Made in Chelsea. On the show, Stephanie caught the attention of a group of well-off Brits and joined their clique; she was a main character on the series for eight seasons. After her run on Made in Chelsea, Stephanie appeared on a number of different reality shows including Celebrity Big Brother and Celebs Go Dating. She lived and worked in the United Kingdom for six long years before returning to the States to reunite with her old friends on The Hills: New Beginnings. So that accent? Occupational hazard.
No matter what, Stephanie is ready for the comments and the shade about her new cadence. "I know I'm going to get destroyed for my accent," she laughed. "But when I drink...the accent comes out. The lady comes out."
I mean, who doesn't sound a little different after a night on the town? Relatable.
The Hills: New Beginnings airs every Monday night at 10 p.m. on MTV.
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