“Uptown is represented by a fantastically detestable office rival of Whitney’s, Olivia Palermo, who has provided the show’s single greatest contribution to the nomenclature of reality TV by referring to herself not as a socialite but as a “social.” This has the benefit of confirming for whoever might actually be wondering that she is in no position to unseat Anne Bass. If you ask me, Olivia is the only reason the cameras ever ought to be in the DVF headquarters, given how little appears to go on there beyond pointless staff meetings underscoring the urgency of fashion week.
Olivia is the uptown not of Brearley and Yale but of ostentatious dressing and dumb luck. She transmits her ding-dong thoughts in imperious glares, and reeks of the insecurities of entitlement. She wants to make sure Whitney understands who she is, though we are given no idea of where in the world the Palermo name is supposed to resonate. At a press event for Manolo Blahnik, she tells Whitney she got her first pair of the designer’s heels for her coming-out party, then says it again after she has claimed that Manolo himself is a family friend even as he barely appears to recognize her.
The City is not the advertisement for New York that The Hills, with its dreamily shot opening-credit sequence, is for Los Angeles. There seems to be West Coast bias at play because Manhattan is made to look boxy and claustrophobic and, so far at least, is evoked primarily by images of the meatpacking district at night. In only one shot, of Whitney and Jay together, does New York seem like a place of possibility and does The City look as it should, like a Woody Allen movie for people who might stumble on a copy of The New York Review of Books and wonder why there are no ads for Chanel.” – The New York Times, on The City, and the city.