7 Reality TV Shows to Hate-Watch in 2014

No judgment.

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For those who didn’t make a New Year’s resolution to cut intellectually questionable television out of their viewing diets, then 2014 has a plethora of trashy reality shows to provide fodder for hours of hate watching. Reality TV is like the french fry of the television world—no nutritional value, but slightly addictive and tasty as hell.

These are the new shows (or at least new twists on old shows) that your DVR should take note of. You can always say you’re watching it strictly out of anthropological interest.

1. The Rich Kids of Beverly Hills, E!, premieres Sun., Jan. 19 at 10/9c

“Have you ever partied so hard, you’ve partied your eyebrows off?” (Do you even know what that means?) Well the Rich Kids of Beverly Hills have. The show follows five uber-rich twenty-somethings who are more than happy to share their lavish lifestyle and insights with the world. Like how you aren’t rich if you drink Dom, you’re rich if you wash your hair in Dom. Who knew?

2. 100 Days of Summer, Bravo, premieres Tues., Jan. 7 at 10/9c

Don’t get too excited, this show has nothing to do with Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s 500 Days of Summer. Similar in formula to the Rich Kids of Beverly Hills, this show follows six attractive and wealthy young professionals through their summer in Chicago. Unlike the Rich Kids, they have jobs and presumably don’t bathe in champagne.

3. Opposite Worlds, Syfy, premieres Tues., Jan. 21 at 10/9c

Potentially higher caliber television than the shows about feuding millennials, Opposite Worlds splits 14 contestants into two realities. One group lives in a high-tech, luxurious environment while the other has to tough it out with Medieval amenities. They watch each others’ lifestyles through a glass wall, and viewers get to alter their environment based on online participation.

Syfy | Opposite Worlds | Teaser from Rich Scurry on Vimeo.

4. Couples Therapy, VH1, premiered Thursday Jan. 2 at 10/9c

Even if you haven’t heard of the series, entering its fourth season, now would be a time to start. With Teen Mom Farrah Abraham, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ Taylor Armstrong, and Jon and Kate Plus Eight’s magnanimous Jon Gosselin (unfortunately no sign of Kate, that would be great TV), it is sure to be a quasi-train wreck. What would these former reality TV stars do if it weren’t for new, awful reality TV?

5. The Real World Ex-plosion, MTV, premieres Weds., Jan. 15 at 10/9c

To keep things fresh for its 29th—I repeat, TWENTY NINTH—season, Real World decided that one month after seven strangers moved into a house in San Francisco, they’d be joined by their exes. There’s sure to be a lot of mild tempered talking it out and peaceful resolutions to uncomfortable situations.

6. Space Race, NBC, premiere unknown

The producer behind Survivor and The Voice has partnered with NBC and Virgin Galactic to create a television series in which people compete for a trip to space. The VIP tickets go for a mere $250,000. While details are few and far between, since Virgin Galactic wants to begin commercial space flight in 2014, the series should appear in the near future. And if Richard Branson is involved, a man who has donned wedding dresses for press and tried to get first class passengers to use ice in the shape of his face, there’s a lot to look forward to.

7. The Bachelor, ABC, premiere Sun. and Mon., Jan. 5 and 6 at 8/7c

The Bachelor concept isn’t new. It’s 18 seasons old. But there is so much anticipation for the new leading man that ABC has campaigned to rename January Juanuary in honor of bachelor Juan Pablo Galavis, an attractive former soccer star who speaks in heavily accented English. Key quotes from the super teaser include: “Give me three shots of Patron—and I’ll be topless” and “Juan Pablo, I hope he dies” from a woman in the fetal position on the bathroom floor.

Happy hate-watching.

10 comments
Bullsgt
Bullsgt

At no time do I find obviously scripted, inane behavior entertaining. Stations I used to watch are now crowed with the basest forms of tripe. Big foot, aliens, paranormal, moonshiners, amish, lumber jacks, prospectors etc.! 


Relaxation can come in many forms (reading, cooking, board games, puzzles, music, dialog) but stupidity comes in one form (Ok! it comes in many forms)  - Reality shows!


I want a dose of reality I commute to work and read the paper/internet news.

timeserf
timeserf

Must disagree that these shows are tasty or addictive; aside from increasingly strained concepts, the filler in the form of teasers, recaps, and commentary from the "stars" often are as long as any actual plot developments.


We do live in a literally cold cruel world that is headed for destruction at the hands of man or Mother Nature; however, our video coping time is better spent reliving or discovering favorites among the 10,000s (if not more) of scripted shows that have been produced over the more than 60 years of television. You can go back as far as the hilarious original "Goldbergs," which shares little more than a name with the current series that has that title, or as recent as favorites from last season.


An essay entitled "Reality Stinks" expands on all this. It can be found at http://classictvdvdreviews.blogspot.com/2013/03/reality-stinks.html


Truth1003
Truth1003

These comments are a bit amusing.  I have a PhD and, obviously, a professional job.  I spend 8-12 hours each day reading, processing, and analyzing dense materials.  When I come home, I like to watch stupid TV. It's not the end of the world.  I find that the "smarter" I work, the dumber I play.  Everyone is different, and it is a bit over the top to make sweeping generalizations about people who watch a particular genre of TV, especially when a good number of them are probably smarter than you.  A good reason to watch TV that requires little intellectual vigor is to unwind. Very simple.  And, it can be entertaining. Perhaps, if I were working an average job with little intellectual challenge with an average educational pedigree, I would also feel the need to demonstrate how smart I am by being a pretentious prick during my free time.  

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

I cannot think of a single bleeping reason for why anyone in their right mind would dignify those shows with even 30 seconds of attention (let alone an entire TIME Magazine-published article).

Seriously, TIME, go back to covering serious news, and stop dabbling in lame pop culture.

COLIG
COLIG

I just wanted to say that anyone who believes these "reality"shows are actually real,well I've got some great waterfront property for sale in the florida everglades.

austintexas61
austintexas61

Thumbs down.  I have zero interest in these so called reality shows.   Thank goodness for good shows such as:"Big Bang Theory", "The Good Wife" and "Downton Abbey", to cite three examples.  

Openminded1
Openminded1

Anyone over the age of 16 that watches any of these so called reality shows is a dumb ass and must have an IQ in and around 50 or less.

timeserf
timeserf

@Truth1003I truly hate to potentially spark a nasty war of words, but merely using the term
"pretentious prick" indicates that you are one. Much of your message is devoted to expressing how intelligent and educated you are and that you are generally superior to the hoi polli. 

I would further speculate that you are a fairly new Ph.D. who lacks the wisdom that being out in the real world for roughly 20 years imparts.

I must comment as well that the fact that you have PhD does not mean that you "obviously" have a professional job. Conversations with customer service reps occasionally led to discussing backgrounds, and I have learned that several of these folks have Ph.D.s and other advanced degrees but that the economy or other circumstances have led them to their current employment.


For that matter, I have a master's degree that requires three years of study and had my thesis published with minimal effort. I did analytical work for several years until consolidation and shipping work overseas led to being reduced to a handful of very well-respected publications a year.


I do think that everyone at every level can benefit from escapism via television; however, I turn to classic sitcoms over reality shows. I also am steadfast in my belief that they do appeal to the lowest common denominator. 

The Honey Boo Boo clan feasting on sketti and gogo juice before heading off to the Hillbilly Olympics or  Phil Robertson spouting off about the virtues of child brides or the evils of homosexuality cannot compare to clever plots and witty dialogue on scripted shows. Even watching the Real Hillbillies of Beverly Hills mistaking an ostrich for a giant chicken has more merit than Paris Hilton running around declaring that every other thing is "hot" or listening to Paula Abdul drunkenly ramble on about a not very talented singer who thinks that winning a 10-week contest entitles him or her to "idol" status.