This week: Amazing Race starts late, gets a new twist; The Bachelor announced

Now that fall TV is in full swing, the last few major reality shows debut on Sunday, some of which are more exciting than others.

The Past: last week’s most-read stories

  1. Shannon flames out after homophobia flares at epic Tribal Council
  2. Immunity idol clue revealed; Probst gives behind-the-scenes details about Medallion
  3. Shannon Elkins: “I was concerned that [Sash] was gay and I was protecting my butthole”
  4. Brad Womack returning as The Bachelor
  5. Discovery sues Deadliest Catch captains Johnathan and Andy Hillstrand for $3 million

The Forward: what to look for this week

  • Sunday, Sept. 26
    The Amazing Race returns for its 17th season [CBS, 8:30 p.m.] with a 90-minute debut that starts a half-hour later, because CBS is allowing time for a football overrun. Wow! The show also has a new twist called the Express Pass that will give its holder an advantage for the whole race, but that’s all we know right now. We’ll see if it helps improve the show and drag it out of its rut. Earlier, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition debuts its eight season with a two-hour episode that starts early [ABC, 7 p.m.]. And later, Undercover Boss returns for its second season [CBS, 10 p.m.], when the CEO of Choice Hotels goes undercover, and we’ll see if the formula for last season’s most-popular new reality show has changed due to its popularity.
  • Monday, Sept. 27
    During Dancing with the Stars [ABC, 8 p.m.], we’ll learn the identity of the next Bachelor. Chris Harrison wrote on Twitter, “I’ll be sitting next to the new Bachelor Monday night at Dancing W The Stars!” (We already know who that is.) And of course he will be. Where else would Chris Harrison be except on a bachelor’s arm? Meanwhile, Adrien Grenier stalkes a teenage paparazzo by filming a documentary about him called Teenage Paparazzo [HBO, 9 p.m.], while The Buried Life returns for the cast to complete more bucket list items [MTV, 10:30 p.m.].
  • Tuesday, Sept. 28
    Chopped ends its champions round with the $50,000 battle [Food Network, 10 p.m.], while the colonists escape the social experiment on The Colony [Discovery, 10 p.m.]. Meanwhile, Billy the Exterminator returns for its third season [A&E, 10 p.m.], and Bravo brings back Inside the Actor’s Studio [8 p.m.] to take advantage of Betty White’s resurgence of popularity.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 29
    The Choir ends its multi-series-in-a-row run [BBC America, 10 p.m.], and She’s Got the Look [TV Land, 10 p.m.] ends its third season. Also airing tonight is War Don Don, a documentary about an accused war criminal’s trial [HBO 2, 8 p.m.] in Sierra Leone.
  • Thursday, Sept. 30
    I’m still getting used to Survivor-free Thursdays, but thankfully there’s The Apprentice [NBC, 10 p.m.]. Alas, it’s in a ratings free-fall even though the season is pretty good so far. And it looks like the drama will be ramped up with a fight between two men who don’t like each other very much at all.

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.