My Top Ten Reality Shows

Posted on: May 26, 2010

I used to hate watching reality shows because they seem so phony and full of crap. But after some time of being a captive audience to some, which my family – particularly my unni – likes watching, I’ve come to enjoy watching them too. From singing and dancing competitions, to love stories dictated by a script, contests for a job, hot model wannabes, top chef wannabes, a peek at the life of celebrities, and my special favorite, heart-wrenching stories filled with human element (I’m a drama queen, ain’t I? hehe)

So, just for my amusement, I thought I’d list here my Top Ten Reality Shows:


Probably, all the genre has been taken and so, E! thought of something that would literally turn the tables and give 15-minutes of fame seekers a little slap on the butt. The show is actually a staged show where actors manipulate the whole show to the detriment of an unsuspecting victim. From a chaotic modeling competition to a wife swap gone extremey bad, here, fake is the new reality.


I never thought I’d be keen on watching Donald Trump but it’s kind’a funny to hear him say the infamous “You’re fired!” line (with his signature lip-twitch). It grew out on me actually. I never really liked the celebrities who competed on the show and I probably saw just one season – the one where Joan Rivers won and fought like crazy with Annie Duke. Man, what a show!


I originally liked Iron Chef Japan because it’s kind’a old school and the dishes interests me more. But a spin-off with Bobby Flay and Mario Batali in it is definitely worth watching. I also like the fact that there are a lot of instances where a challenger beats the iron chef – somehow it gives me a feeling that it’s a real competition. Plus, I don’t know how to cook (but is definitely eager to) so it’s an instant guide for me to learn about ingredients and stuff. Although that Michael Symon and his irritating laugh really annoys me. But what the hell, he’s good. And who would pass up to see Mark Dacascos make a total fool out of himself when he does some martial arts poses when shouting (in the words of his uncle) “Allez cuisine!”


No, I don’t really like Tyra Banks. I don’t hate her either. What I love about this show is seeing how a not-so model type evolves into a super model. Like a typical reality show, it’s full of drama (how a ghetto mum aspires to be a model and all, you know?) and color too (with that I mean aspiring model contestants come from different races. It makes me really proud to see an Asian competing.) And I always anticipate the part where they take pictures of the models and how the “best shots” come out. So, do you wanna be on top? =)


Okay,  I don’t believe this either. I used to hate the mere sight of Hollywood’s glamorous party girls. They’re mean, foul-mouthed, never care for anything except themselves, they’re brats and annoying creatures. But now i believe, there’s always an exemption.  I’m not saying Kim Kardashian is an angel but from what the show is telling me, she’s actually not that bad. And I never thought that watching the Kardashian/Gener family could be such an amusement. What I like about it is there’s a heart to every episode, a lesson learned, or something that would make you say, “Awww!” Try watching it!


I am still hoping against hope of the possibility of this show being brought to the Philippines ‘coz our house seriously needs a dire makeover (I’ll be the first to send my video application). I couldn’t believe how much money the producers are throwing in on every episode (okay, I know they have tons of sponsors but still).  The chosen family being lucky is an understatement, with the show – aside from giving the house a total makeover – waives land amortizations, grants scholarship to kids, provides basic necessity supplies, and all things unimaginable. I can’t help but be touched every time they tell the heartbreaking stories of the families. Not to mention, Ty Pennington’s quirky attitude adds life to the show.


Do you know who Joey Greco is? Whenever you see him walking towards you with a bunch of cameras around, beware – you have been caught in the act of cheating! But of course, if you’re not in the U.S., forget about it.  Cheaters is a syndicated series featuring detectives with hidden cameras following the unsuspecting “wayward and the amorous.” It documents the grief of people being cheated on while the host, Greco, helps him/her confront the cheating partner. I may be a little harsh and insensitive but I watch it because I find the “confrontation” part intriguing and funny at times, especially when the cheater denies his/her affair even if the evidence is staring him/her right in the face. I find myself shouting at my tv screen, “There, caught you right in the face, cheater!” And you may not get me on this but I always find Greco’s calmness in the midst of tension really fascinating.


I have always liked dancing but sadly, I wasn’t gifted with rhythm and I definitely don’t have that “snap.” So I content myself watching the pros. And despite Mary Murphy’s ear-blasting high pitch laugh and annoying voice, I totally love watching the show. Dancing is such an art and the contestants are definitely artists who just need a break. They’re so good, you’d wish they all win but of course, not possible. But unlike American Idol (which has definitely turned into a crazy fad these days), it’s hard to like and root for just one contestant. And what I like best about this show is the emotion that each dance brings to the viewer. Plus, I get to discover great songs! =)


Who doesn’t watch this? okay, there are some who stops watching when their bets get cut off the show but still, as I’ve said, I believe AI is no longer just a reality show; it’s a crazy fad that has taken over the lives of people all over the world. Me personally, I reserve my Wednesdays and Thursdays for the show and watch re-runs every time I chance upon them. Just too bad, my bet Alex Lambert got cut off early on the show, didn’t even made the top ten. I started watching AI during Carrie Underwood’s season and instantly caught the bug so I started anticipating it every year. And yes, I love Simon Cowell and was a bit disappointed when Paula Abdul officially left the show (and Kara Dioguardi who I don’t like much got on board). Also, Ellen’s not much fun on AI as much as she is in her own show. So, I don’t know once Simon’s out if it’s still gonna be worth it.


I’m not a pusang gala for nothing so being the travel enthusiast that I am, I truly truly love this show for introducing me to places (albeit only in tv) that I didn’t know even exist. Okay, I admit, I started watching Amazing Race Asia when Marc Nelson was a contestant (with Rovilson Fernandez) in TARA Season 2 but I’m hooked ever since. I even watch The Amazing Race (International) now. I just can’t explain the excitement it brings even to the viewers – who’s first and who’s last and the tasks that they need to complete to move forward. I get literally tired watching because I shout while jumping up and down my seat every time. Grabe ang adrenalin rush!  I wouldn’t dream of joining this because I’m pretty hopeless when it comes to physical tasks and I certainly can’t do a lot of things that they do so I’ll just sit and watch. In fact, I’m really excited about TARA 4.. wonder who’s going to represent the Philippines this time.


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