Top Chef Masters 2 returns as the (hopefully misleading) trailer emphasizes drama

Just a few hours left until the second season of Top Chef Masters, which I’m excited about because the first was so fantastic, and far exceeded the latest regular edition. It returns tonight on Bravo at 11 p.m. ET, fa owing the fine uh chowin on She Jean Us–I mean, Shear Genius.

The trailer for the new season (below) does have me slightly concerned, since it emphasizes drama and conflict. One of the best things about the first season was its relative lack of interpersonal conflict and stupidity despite the intense competition, which made the Voltaggios et al seem even more lame once their season came around.

However, watching it again, it’s pretty clear that these are mostly all moments of fun and frivolity that have been edited to suggest otherwise; combined with the Bravo voice-over guy talking into his hand dramatically, it seems worse than it will be. I hope.

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.