NBC will air A Clay Aiken Christmas.

NBC will air A Clay Aiken Christmas.
The next CD from American Idol 2‘s Clay Aiken is out today, and it’s called Merry Christmas With Love. (Not to be outdone, George Huff released his own Christmas EP last week, although it has a loveless, self-centered, abbreviated title: George Huff Xmas.) But the album isn’t Clay’s only contribution to our holiday joy: He’ll join Frosty the Snowman and the Grinch when he gets his own Christmas special, titled, oddly enough, A Clay Aiken Christmas. Oh, the elf jokes we could make. On the special, which airs Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. ET, he’ll be joined by an odd supporting cast consisting of Barry Manilow, Yolanda Adams, and Megan Mullally. Clay also starts touring on Nov. 21.

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.