2013’s most-popular reality blurred stories

One fun thing I like to do while recovering from the holidays and being sick is look at analytics and site data, so here’s a list of the 20 most-popular stories I wrote this past year.

Popularity isn’t the most important measurement, of course, unless you’re in middle school and/or on Facebook, but it is fascinating to look back at what grabbed interest. The number one story is no surprise, though I am still surprised how Big Brother cast members’ bigotry became such a national story, when it’s previously been all but ignored.

This list has quite an eclectic mix, from absurdity (those who thought an ABC reality series was actually murdering its contestants) to bigotry, from highs to lows. There’s also the comically stupid and the actually tragic. Survivor‘s fall season is well-represented, as it was a season that managed to generate interest last spring and then deliver on that.

  1. Big Brother already a cesspool of racist, homophobic, and misogynistic comments
  2. Survivor Blood vs. Water cast includes Big Brother winner, former NFL player
  3. People think ABC’s Whodunnit actually killed contestants
  4. Brandon Hantz banned from Survivor reunion as Russell Hantz threatens Phillip Sheppard
  5. Survivor 27: returnees versus their families
  6. One of four brothers who got a Shark Tank investment died earlier this year
  7. Survivor Blood vs. Water: returnees vs family members
  8. Amy’s Baking Company causes Gordon Ramsay to quit, Kitchen Nightmares to win
  9. Amazing Race 24 all-star teams identified
  10. Survivor‘s Todd Herzog: an alcoholic who’s “closer to death” than any Dr. Phil guest
  11. Survivor Cagayan three tribes, brains vs. beauty vs. brawn
  12. Why Big Brother After Dark is censored on TVGN
  13. Tina Wesson’s son, Katie Collins’ brother died in a car accident
  14. Details on Todd Herzog’s rehab, how Survivor contributed to alcoholism, Dr. Phil appearance
  15. RIP Survivor, murdered at 26 by Jeff Probst
  16. Bravo’s Below Deck cast member did gay porn
  17. Proof Restaurant Stakeout uses actors to play servers
  18. BB15 Spencer’s child porn “tasteless joke” leads his employer to report him to law enforcement
  19. Whodunnit: all your questions answered
  20. More of Big Brother 15 cast’s awfulness and bigotry: watch the video

Frankie leads Big Brother's parade of delusion

Frankie on Big Brother

Heading into the finale, the delusion continues, with a re-appearance by evicted Frankie.

Related: The unwatchable cast of Fox's Utopia keeps yelling and screaming.


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.