At MTV, reality has always been a moving target. Sixteen years ago, the network heralded the era of reality television with “The Real World.” Three years ago, it pushed the genre further with “Laguna Beach: The Real OC,” in which the mundane lives of a clique of pretty teenagers were presented in a way that appeared scripted and dramatic.
Matt Bostwick, right, an MTV senior vice president, reviewing material with Rajiv Mody, senior director of franchise development.
Now the cable channel aims to push the boundaries of false reality one step further. This week, MTV will introduce Virtual Laguna Beach, an online service in which fans of the program can immerse themselves — or at least can immerse digitized, three-dimensional characters, called avatars, that they control — in virtual versions of the show’s familiar seaside hangouts.
“You can not only watch TV, but now you can actually live it,” Van Toffler, the president of the MTV Networks Music, Film and Logo Group, said in an interview.