Contender 4 debuts on Versus with new host Tony Danza

The Contender 4 debuts tonight, and the show is on its third network in four seasons. The 12 episodes will air on Versus, formerly known as the Outdoor Life Network, on Wednesday nights at 10.

But networks aren’t all it’s changed: the show has a new host, Tony Danza (who replaced Sugar Ray Leonard); new trainers; and a new location, Singapore. Two teams of eight cruiserweight boxers will compete in five-round fights.

Danza says that, for season one when Sylvester Stallone hosted, Danza “was supposed to be the host, but they decided the big movie star would be a better host than me.” He’s not shy about criticizing that first season: “There were a couple things I didn’t like, I didn’t like the host. I didn’t like the fact that the families were so prominent.”

He also says that the distant location means “the families aren’t present,” although “The guys’ stories are still filled with [family] stuff.”

The Contender [Versus]
Former club boxer Tony Danza does a bout face as host of ‘The Contender’ [New York Daily News]

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.