FOX’s Skating with Celebrities debuts tonight

FOX’s shameless Dancing with the Stars rip-off Skating with Celebrities debuts tonight at 9 p.m. ET, immediately following another hour of Idol humiliation.

Hosted by Scott Hamilton, the show features six quasi-celebs, all of whom are partnered with real ice skaters, including Nancy Kerrigan. The celebrities are Bruce Jenner, Dave Coulier, Todd Bridges, Kristy Swanson, Deborah Gibson, and Jillian Barberie.

Perhaps surprisingly, FOX’s blatant plagiarism actually might work this time. The Hollywood Reporter’s review says the show is “an inspired idea” that “works” because of “the emphasis on fun and enjoyment,” and says it may be “a breakout hit.”

Variety’s review, however, isn’t as favorable, because although “there might not be a more unintentionally hilarious spectacle on TV this season than Jenner in a white military outfit,” the show is “overproduc[ed],” and may lead to “payback for Fox’s habit of throwing on programs that are so obviously derivative of other nets’ hits.”

Skating with Celebrities [FOX]

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.