Extreme Makeover will build seven homes in tornado-damaged Joplin

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition will go to Joplin, Mo., to rebuild seven of the more than 7,000 homes destroyed by the May tornado. (If you need to be reminded of the devastation, check out these shocking images.)

The builder who’s leading the project, Millstone Custom Homes, is soliciting help and donations on a new web site, and Ty asks for volunteers in a video and directs volunteers to this web site. The build starts Oct. 19.

A press release says that the project has “the goal of providing ‘anchor’ construction that not only will directly benefit families in need, but also can provide the foundation for rebuilding an entire segment of the city’s decimated housing stock.”

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.