Contender “ignores … that boxing’s appeal rests with its resistance to cleanliness.”

Contender “ignores … that boxing’s appeal rests with its resistance to cleanliness.”
Examining NBC’s The Contender and its lack of overwhelming success so far, The New York Times’ Richard Sandomir argues that producer Mark “Burnett’s intended pasteurization of boxing … ignores the historic truth that boxing’s appeal rests with its resistance to cleanliness.” The show, he writes, “plays up the fairness of who fights whom; there are no predatory promoters roaming the ring before and after bouts; one boxer doesn’t make the other one wait interminably before leaving his locker room, and venal villains whom viewers would want to see knocked out have not emerged.” As such, the series is “disappointing” and “distorts what real boxing is.”

Frankie leads Big Brother's parade of delusion

Frankie on Big Brother

Heading into the finale, the delusion continues, with a re-appearance by evicted Frankie.

Related: The unwatchable cast of Fox's Utopia keeps yelling and screaming.


Shark Tank is getting a spin-off

Shark Tank

Companies that get deals on the show will be followed for this new spin-off.

Also: Before the show began, Shark Barbara Corcoran was cast and then replaced--but then she sent this amazing e-mail and won the job.

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.