America’s Choice begins on Thursday

One of the most idiotic–but still potentially amusing–elements of Big Brother returns Thursday. That’s when Julie Chen will read a card with the first America’s Choice question of the year. If you blacked out after last year, America’s Choice allows the audience to make a (generally inconsequential) choice for the houseguests.

This year, voting will occur online and via text messaging votes, according to a press release CBS sent out today. Larry Kramer, president of CBS Digital Media, said in the release, “Text messaging will bring the ‘Big Brother’ experience to living rooms across America, allowing even greater participation from the viewing public. It’s an organic extension of the ‘Big Brother’ phenomenon, and it will be incorporated seamlessly into the show.”

Sweet! Oh, wait, he said organic, not orgasmic, which would have been a lot more fun.

Hopefully, we’ll get exciting questions this year, such as, “Which houseguest should be pushed down the stairs?” or “Should we lace the peanut butter with laxatives or speed?”

Big Brother 6 Goes Wireless [CBS press release]

The Quest ends its journey stronger than it began

Verlox from The Quest

A review of the finale of summer's best reality series, which wasn't always perfect but was thoroughly entertaining right down to the finish, which included phenomenal challenges and special effects. Will ABC give it a second season?

Plus: an interview with the actor who played Verlox and the ogre.

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.