Eden producer “enjoy[s] playing God.”

Eden producer “enjoy[s] playing God.”
Monday, about 4.3 million watched Forever Eden, about 10 million fewer people than watched shows on NBC and CBS, and “it has so far lost a million viewers each episode.” Perhaps one of the reasons for the $20 million show’s less-than-stellar ratings so far is that its producer thinks he’s the almighty. Executive producer Bruce Toms tells the Independent, “I enjoy playing God with the contestants. Manipulating their lives, being a puppet-master….” Another reason might be that he’s so obsessed with creating a story that they shoot retakes and manipulate things by changing rules: “We can’t be too Machiavellian but we certainly whisper suggestions in contestants’ ears and change the rules to get our story. And we always get our story.” Toms, who is obsessed with Lord of the Flies and has a copy with them on the set, says producers look forward to conflict but won’t be “letting them smash Piggy’s head against the wall.”

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.