Next week: Real World returns, Kathy Griffin meets Levi Johnston, and Wipeout goes World Cup

Along with me, past forward took a vacation last week, too, but now we’re back. We’re both feeling very refreshed after unplugging, hiking, kayaking, having quality friend time, and doing yoga dance. Don’t ask about the last part.

The Past

Meanwhile, Neil Patrick Harris got a piece of Survivor and Phil Keoghan got another hosting job, and Cyndi Lauper got her own reality show, and Survivor Nicaragua started taping.

The Forward

  • Friday, June 25
    Before Party Down, one of the funniest sit-coms on TV, concludes its second (and perhaps final) season on Starz, there’s some reality TV to keep us company. Wife Swap is back [ABC, 8 p.m.] and includes a family that “live the lifestyle of 1840s pioneers, including traditional roles for men and women.” Sigh. Meanwhile, the Ady Gil finally arrived to help out on Whale Wars [Animal Planet, 9 p.m.], which means the tension is getting ratcheted up because we know what’s coming.
  • Sunday, June 27
    Last week was the debut of The Real L Word, a series that’s a reality version of Showtime’s scripted series about lesbian friends. The first episode, “Power of the Clam” (really) repeats [Showtime, 9 p.m.] followed by a new episode. Meanwhile, the surprisingly watchable shooting competition Top Shot continues [History, 10 p.m.] with a challenge that tests the contestants’ ability to decide whether a fast-appearing target is friendly or worthy of being blown away.
  • Monday, June 28
    All day, A&E repeats episodes from previous seasons of Intervention, which returns [A&E, 9 p.m.] with an episode that follows an alcoholic mother who drinks with her 20-year-old addict son, and Obsessed [A&E, 10 p.m.], which debuts its second season with an episode that follows a compulsive exerciser and a compulsive hand-washer. Oh, and Andy Cohen’s Watch What Happens Live on a crappy set with even crappier graphics has found a new night for the summer, Mondays.
  • Tuesday, June 29
    Wipeout [ABC, 8 p.m.] airs a special World Cup-themed episode that turns the big balls into football/soccer balls. Later, on My Life on the D-List [Bravo, 9 p.m.], Kathy Griffin goes to Alaska to spend time with her pretend boyfriend Levi Johnston, and the preview shows them looking at his Playgirl photos together, which along with just being in Alaska should provide Kathy some great opportunities for one-liners.
  • Wednesday, June 30
    The Real World returns to New Orleans [MTV, 10 p.m.] and returns to its even stupider, drunker ways. Also tonight, Man Shops Globe [Sundance, 10 p.m.] and Locked Up Abroad [National Geographic Channel, 10 p.m.] return, while on Top Chef DC [Bravo, 9 p.m.], the remaining chefs go to Capitol Hill to make a meal for interns, and on Work of Art [Bravo, 10 p.m.], the contestants create shocking works of art.
  • Thursday, June 17
    Wipeout airs on a special night with an episode that will include the 1,000th contestant to bounce off shit [ABC, 8 p.m.].

Review: Married at First Sight

Marriage At First Sight

In an era of Tinder and Grindr, instant acceptance or dismissal of a potential partner, or instant sex with another body, Married at First Sight offers the thrill of watching strangers deal with the very basics of relationships.

Beyond the headline-grabbing premise, the series has turned out to be a stripped-down, authentic exploration of something very interesting. Read the full review.

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.