Real Housewives of Top Chef coming to Bravo

Earlier this year, an event featuring Michelle Obama and several former Top Chef contestants was revealed to be part of a new Bravo series, Life After Chef.

Yesterday, Bravo announced that Magical Elves-produced series and its stars: “Richard Blais in Atlanta, Jen Carroll in Philadelphia, Spike Mendelsohn in D.C., and Fabio Viviani in Los Angeles as they reach milestones in both their personal lives and culinary careers, from opening their own restaurants to expanding franchises and establishing themselves as culinary leaders in the food world.”

Life After Top Chef, as it’s now called, sounds interesting, and they’ve certainly chosen four people who are good combinations of talent and personality. But the preview for the show makes it seem dangerously like The Real Housewives of Top Chef: contrived situations designed to produce drama. Bravo is becoming more and more about assholes behaving like assholes, and this seems to take one more step in that direction.

There is hope, especially in the description, and if it’s more docudrama than docusoap than docubullshit, it’ll be a fun spin-off from one of reality TV’s greatest, if declining, competition franchises. Otherwise, ugh.

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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, 37, 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.