Zombies at American Idol auditions scream, “Television rots your braaaaaaains!”

Fifteen actors dressed as zombies descended upon the American Idol 5 auditions being held at the University of Texas at Austin last week.

UT grad student Nick “Muntean organized the zombie horde using the online forum Craigslist. He posted an ad soliciting people who would like to ‘raise awareness about the brain-melting nature of television by pretending … to be a zombie, and terrorizing throngs of vapid pop-star hopefuls at the ‘American Idol’ auditions,'” The Daily Texan reports.

But they weren’t able to crash the party, as producers knew they were coming–and filmed them for possible inclusion on the show. Coordinating producer Patrick Lynn told the paper, “We’ve been on 24-hour zombie watch. We thought it would be fun to have them on the show.”

Thus they signed waivers and were filmed, proving that in 2005, media exposure always trumps subversion.

Zombies descend upon Erwin Center [The Daily Texan via Towleroad]

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.