Duck Dynasty beats American Idol, and everything else

A&E’s smash hit Duck Dynasty returned last night for its third season and destroyed its competition, both on cable and broadcast TV. The network said that it is now “the #1 nonfiction series on cable in 2013″ and the “season three premiere grew by 132% in total viewers, 117% in adults 25-54 and 127% in adults 18-49 versus the season two premiere.”

Even more impressive, Vulture’s Joe Adalian has a series of devastating comparisons–at least, they’re devastating for broadcast networks that target huge audiences yet have been beaten by a low-budget, scripted reality show:

He pointed out in a later tweet that there’s a “[g]ood chance nets will jump ahead” when ratings that include DVR viewings within seven days are included. But again, if you’re a network spending millions and millions of dollars on a single episode of a show and interest is so weak that most people would rather tune into a dumb but fun fake reality show on cable, you have a problem.

Survivor San Juan Del Sur's dark cloud is lifted

John Rocker

In its third episode, Survivor San Juan Del Sur improved significantly as John Rocker faced off against an Amazing Race villain. But the Exile Island reward challenge remains a drag on the series.


Why Dick Donato left Big Brother 13

Dick Donato

The Big Brother villain known as "Evel Dick" has finally revealed why he left the show during its 13th season: he learned he was HIV positive.

Also: Dick claims he had no choice but to leave the game.

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.