The Trench is “a gimmicky treatment of history.”

despite real elements, The Trench is “a gimmicky treatment of history.”
On Friday at 9 p.m., BBC2 will air The Trench, a reality TV show that “asks a group of contemporary men to spend two weeks living in dug-out mud in France, reconstructing the lives of soldiers in the trenches in 1916,” according to The Guardian’s Mark Lawson. He asks what the difference between this show and one where “a hundred volunteers relive the experience of the victims of the Nazi death-camps,” and finds that the show is mostly “a gimmicky treatment of history.”

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.