Reality TV Shows

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About Reality

Reality TV arose as a named genre of programming in the 1990s with the introduction of a number of series that featured the unscripted interactions of ordinary people, as opposed to actors or celebrities. Early reality series were a unique form, but the genre has expanded to include shows that infuse other genres-game shows, documentaries, etc.-with unscripted elements.

The earliest reality series were ground-breaking in that they stepped outside the conventions of traditional programming in an attempt to focus on the real lives of their characters. MTV's The Real World, arguably the first modern American reality series, featured a group of non-actor young people living together in a house; the group's daily activities were filmed via cameras scattered throughout the house, and there was no script or plan for how the events in the house would play out.

Very quickly, aspects of reality TV were adopted into other types of shows. Survivor merged reality TV with the game-show genre; participants in the show were engaged in a competition, but their interactions were filmed and presented in manner that emphasized the unscripted drama between them. This hybrid reality-game show became a very popular subgenre, and it eventually encompassed a wide range of competitions, including those involving music, dance, cooking and weight loss.

The reality formula eventually evolved to include unscripted shows that claimed to present the every-day lives of celebrities. Other reality series followed the professional-and, to a certain degree, personal-lives of ordinary people such as police officers, fishermen or others in hazardous occupations. The reality genre also sometimes connects itself with fiction genres, as in paranormal-investigation series, where real-life investigators go about their business and the show attempts to use their activities to generate suspense.

About This Genre
The Voice
The Voice
Dancing with the Stars
Dancing with the Stars
Survivor
Survivor
The Amazing Race
The Amazing Race
The Bad Girls Club
The Bad Girls Club
Teen Mom 2
Teen Mom 2
America's Next Top Model
America's Next Top Model
Big Brother
Big Brother
Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood
Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood
Keeping Up with The Kardashians
Keeping Up with The Kardashians
The Real Housewives of New Jersey
The Real Housewives of New Jersey
19 Kids and Counting
19 Kids and Counting
Chrisley Knows Best
Chrisley Knows Best
Couples Therapy
Couples Therapy
Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta
Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta
The X Factor
The X Factor
Are You The One?
Are You The One?
Project Runway
Project Runway
The First 48
The First 48
Gold Rush: Alaska
Gold Rush: Alaska
Love & Hip Hop
Love & Hip Hop
The Real Housewives of Atlanta
The Real Housewives of Atlanta
True Life
True Life
The Biggest Loser
The Biggest Loser
South Beach Tow
South Beach Tow
T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle
T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle
Jay Leno's Garage
Jay Leno's Garage
Shark Tank
Shark Tank
Naked and Afraid
Naked and Afraid
Ink Master
Ink Master
Cops
Cops
Jersey Shore
Jersey Shore
Ghost Adventures
Ghost Adventures
America's Got Talent
America's Got Talent
16 and Pregnant
16 and Pregnant
Ghost Hunters
Ghost Hunters
Married at First Sight
Married at First Sight
Antiques Roadshow
Antiques Roadshow
The Ultimate Fighter
The Ultimate Fighter
Total Divas
Total Divas
Below Deck
Below Deck
American Idol
American Idol
Preachers of L.A.
Preachers of L.A.
Fast N' Loud
Fast N' Loud
Lizard Lick Towing
Lizard Lick Towing
Rehab Addict
Rehab Addict
Cheaters
Cheaters
The Bachelorette
The Bachelorette
Top Chef
Top Chef
Long Island Medium
Long Island Medium
Face Off
Face Off
RuPaul's Drag Race
RuPaul's Drag Race
Sister Wives
Sister Wives
The Profit
The Profit
So You Think You Can Dance
So You Think You Can Dance
Snooki & JWOWW
Snooki & JWOWW
The Little Couple
The Little Couple
Hell's Kitchen
Hell's Kitchen
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
Mountain Monsters
Mountain Monsters
Intervention
Intervention
Kitchen Nightmares
Kitchen Nightmares
Wicked Tuna: North vs. South
Wicked Tuna: North vs. South
Basketball Wives LA
Basketball Wives LA
Party Down South
Party Down South
Mommy XXX
Mommy XXX
Pit Bulls and Parolees
Pit Bulls and Parolees
Bar Rescue
Bar Rescue
Braxton Family Values
Braxton Family Values
The Real Housewives of Orange County
The Real Housewives of Orange County
Hoarders
Hoarders
Friendzone
Friendzone
The Incredible Dr. Pol
The Incredible Dr. Pol
MythBusters
MythBusters
The Bachelor
The Bachelor
The Chew
The Chew
America's Funniest Home Videos
America's Funniest Home Videos
The Real World
The Real World
Basketball Wives
Basketball Wives
Gigolos
Gigolos
30 For 30
30 For 30
Monsters Inside Me
Monsters Inside Me
Gypsy Sisters
Gypsy Sisters
Ridiculousness
Ridiculousness
The Dead Files
The Dead Files
Criss Angel Mindfreak
Criss Angel Mindfreak
Toddlers and Tiaras
Toddlers and Tiaras
Duck Dynasty
Duck Dynasty
Fight Girls
Fight Girls
The Girls Next Door
The Girls Next Door
Hardcore Pawn
Hardcore Pawn
Kim of Queens
Kim of Queens
Teen Mom 3
Teen Mom 3
Breaking Amish
Breaking Amish
The Hills
The Hills
Homicide Hunter
Homicide Hunter
Bachelor in Paradise
Bachelor in Paradise
The Pioneer Woman
The Pioneer Woman
The Real World/Road Rules Challenge
The Real World/Road Rules Challenge
Deadliest Catch
Deadliest Catch