Former child star will appear on Big Brother to whore his CBS sitcom

The Big Brother 7 houseguests are getting a surprise visitor tonight, CBS has announced, spoiling its own surprise before it even happens.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a surprise unless there was a chance for cross-promotion, and the visitor is the star of a CBS sitcom. But he’s probably better known for the sitcom he starred in as a teenager, Doogie Howser, M.D.

Yes, Neil Patrick Harris “will make a surprise visit to BIG BROTHER: ALL-STARS when he drops into the house for ‘Christmas in August,’ a prize the Houseguests won in Sunday’s food competition,” according to CBS. The network calls him “an avid reality TV fan,” although who knows if he’s a Big Brother fan.

Update: An alert reader noticed that Will lists Neil Patrick Harris as one of his only favorite actor. I’d say he’s being facetious, but he also lists How I Met Your Mother as one of his favorite TV shows. Someone’s going to be very excited.

Neil Patrick Harris, Star of How I Met Your Mother … [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.