Three shows debuted over the holiday weekend: Rollergirls, Flavor of Love, and Celebrity Fit Club 3

With 2006 came the debut of two new reality series, and a new season of an old show.

A&E’s anticipated new series Rollergirls debuted last night at 10. The first episode was, however, oddly coma-inducing. With a team named the “Putas Del Fuego,” drama including vandalism and drunken fights, a cast member named Venis Envy, and roller-skating action that has more violence than a WWE match, the show should have been an instant classic. But the first episode was dreadfully boring–at least until the roller derby action started. But even that was completely confusing way, and thus the excitement quickly faded.

Perhaps that’s the point, because the series is edited and shot more like a documentary than a reality show, and lacks urgency and tension. That feel has drawn others to the show; YuppiePunk’s review asks, “whether the documentary feel and the girls’ brash personalities will turn audiences away,” arguing that “the show’s first three episodes were much classier than we expected.”

Also this past weekend, VH1 kicked off a new Sunday Celebreality block. A third edition of Celebrity Fit Club led the way, followed by a brand-new show, Flavor of Love. The Bachelor format is so tired that I’ve yet to be able to watch the DVRed episode, but if anyone can resurrect a subgenre, it’s Flava. All three shows repeat throughout the week if you were face down in an alley somewhere and missed them.

Rollergirls [A&E]
Flavor of Love and Celebrity Fit Club 3 [VH1]

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.