Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s eloquent defense of Real Housewives, reality TV

Retired NBA player and current Splash contestant Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has written an incredibly smart and eloquent defense of Bravo’s trashy reality soap opera franchise The Real Housewives, and a defense of documentary-style reality TV as art that has great value. He also argues that the housewives are undermining feminism and equality for women.

His Huffington Post essay How the Real Housewives Have Made America Better sounds like a joke but he is completely serious, and makes a compelling case:

“Those who refuse to watch, based on some misguided cultural snobbery, aren’t just missing great entertainment, they are overlooking the best social insight into the American psyche since Huck Finn and Jim explored the soul of America on a raft of lost innocence.

…Real Housewives reigns as the Grand Poobah of reality series. It is a glitzy window into mainstream values, if not mainstream lifestyle. It offers more insight into American consciousness than most TV scripted dramas. We just have to be willing to see ourselves in it.”

The Quest ends its journey stronger than it began

Verlox from The Quest

A review of the finale of summer's best reality series, which wasn't always perfect but was thoroughly entertaining right down to the finish, which included phenomenal challenges and special effects. Will ABC give it a second season?

Plus: an interview with the actor who played Verlox and the ogre.


Shark Tank is getting a spin-off

Shark Tank

Companies that get deals on the show will be followed for this new spin-off.

Also: Before the show began, Shark Barbara Corcoran was cast and then replaced--but then she sent this amazing e-mail and won the job.

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.