Smoking Gun debuts Gotti footage series.

Smoking Gun debuts Gotti footage series.
If Growing Up Gotti‘s hair gel crises, teenage mood swings, and fights over tattoos aren’t exactly the sorts of things you had in mind for a reality series about the Gotti family, there’s a new Gotti-themed reality series online that you’ll appreciate. Our friends at The Smoking Gun say that “[w]hen it comes to watching the Gottis squabble, we prefer to pop in surveillance videotapes made during a two-day family visit to the Illinois penitentiary John Gotti called home (prison officials recorded all visits to the Gambino family boss).” Thus, they’re debuting their own series called Blowing Up Gotti that will feature new footage every Monday. In the debut episode, “an irritable Gotti meets with his brother Peter, Victoria, and her son John, who was 10 at the time and not yet addicted to hair gel.” And he also “threatens the kid with bodily harm and tosses him from the visiting room” after a disagreement over what type of career John should have. Fun.

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.