Starting Over shows momentum; producer “hoping this season is a real breakthrough year”

Starting Over is getting ready to begin its third season, and it’ll do so with “some recent momentum: season-to-season growth in key adult female demos, 40 station upgrades and a recent Daytime Emmy win for special-class programming,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Jonathan Murray, of the show’s production company Bunim-Murray, says “I’m hoping this season is a real breakthrough year.” He also says that the original plan for the show–a primetime series featuring couples in counseling–wouldn’t have worked as well as the current formula. Why? “Women have always been the best cast members because they are more open and anxious to deal with issues, they aren’t afraid of conflict, and they aren’t afraid to grab life and get the most out of it,” he says.

Still, the third season, which went into production in August, will basically revert to that original formula, as it features a “Relationship Boot Camp.” Couples will live together in the new San Fernando Valley house and go through counseling for three weeks.

But there’s no reason to fret: After the three weeks, the men will leave. According to an NBC press release, “At the conclusion of this series of special episodes that will air during the initial weeks of the season, the couples will leave and six women will enter the STARTING OVER house for a return to the traditional daytime drama that STARTING OVER fans have come to love and expect.”

Real-life struggles fuel ‘Starting Over’ drama [Hollywood Reporter]
“Starting Over” Doubles the Daytime Drama [NBC press release]

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.