Amazing Race won’t switch to HD; 13 new teams visited Kazakhstan, where locals feared another Borat

CBS has announced the 11 teams who will compete as part of the 13th Amazing Race, which debuts Sept. 28.

In a story about the new season, executive producer Betram van Munster told the AP that despite Survivor‘s switch to high definition, his show won’t switch to high definition anytime soon. “I don’t think it’s a priority. We’re just happy to continue making the show as it is.”

He also said that, for the first time, the show visited Kazakhstan, perhaps best known to American audiences as the fictional home of Sacha Baron Cohen’s character Borat. “We shot most of that episode in the capital. People were a little afraid we were going to pull a ‘Borat’ on them. I told them we weren’t doing ‘Borat,’ but what happened there is very, very funny. It’s not easy to shoot in places like that because they practically have no television industry,” van Munster said.

As to the new teams, seven of the 11 teams are male-female, and there are just two male-only teams this season, neither of which seems like the sort of team of 20- or 30-something guys who’ve dominated the race in the past. That said, the teams sound very familiar: a “bickering” couple, blonde “southern belles”, fraternity brothers, and a separated married couple. There’s old couple is comprised of two beekeeping super-hippies, and if you think I’m kidding, just look at their photo.

Eclectic mix of contestants for ‘Amazing Race’ [AP]

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.

Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

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.