Jersey Shore will end after its sixth season

MTV’s improbable success Jersey Shore, which is the most-watched series in the network’s history, will end after its sixth season, which debuts in October. After immediately penetrating the pop culture zeitgeist, and continuing to be among the country’s most written-about celebrities, its cast won’t go anywhere any time soon, including on the spin-off Snooki & JWOWW.

Why would MTV cancel its “highest rated series ever” and a show that was “the #1 cable series for P12-34 consecutively for all five of its previous seasons”? A combination of things, such as the fact that the show ran out of ways to attempt to capture that season-one magic again, never mind that the (increasingly well-paid) cast members might want to use their fame to do other things now.

That the show lasted six seasons is a testament to both the strength of the cast members’ personalities and the producers, who managed to stretch out a concept well past the point at which it should have worked. A pre-fame, pre-attention first season is hard to duplicate, and eventually became a farce as the show ignored their fame and did other sketchy things. But that never really affected the show’s popularity.

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.