Real Housewives of Atlanta debuts tonight

Bravo diversifies its prime-time lineup and its Real Housewives franchise tonight when it debuts The Real Housewives of Atlanta. The network says its five new stars are “driven and ambitious women [who] prove that they’re not just ‘housewives,’ but entrepreneurs, doting mothers and classy Southern women.” Two of the five are also married to professional athletes, and one used to be.

The stars are DeShawn Snow, who has three boys and is married to Eric Snow, Cleveland Cavaliers captain; Zim Zolciak, who’s a single mother of two children and is recording a country album; Lisa Wu Hartwell, who has three kids, runs her won real estate agency, acts and models, and is married to NFL player Ed Hartwell; NeNe Leakes has two sons and does non-profit work; and Sheree Whitfield, who’s single, has three children and her own clothing line (and is the ex-wife of NFL player Bob Whitfield).

Four of the five women are black, and executive producer Steve Weinstock told critics that producers “went down to Atlanta to look for a diverse cast because we just thought it would be a very — a great extension of the franchise which has been so successful on Bravo. … We sort of felt blessed that we found a combination of both a diverse cast and an interesting place that Bravo hadn’t been to before. Bravo wanted to kind of explore the South in a city like Atlanta, and, you know, we think we’ve got an amazing show.”

They were all close friends before the show except Lisa, who was an acquaintance. All of them also watch the other Real Housewives shows. In July, NeNe told TV critics, “Atlanta is the Black Hollywood. We have CEOs, athletes, executives, and a lot of powerful people there.”

Real Housewives of Atlanta [Bravo]

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.