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2002: the year in reality TV.

For a genre that was declared dead in 2001, 2002 certainly was an active year.

From The Osbournes to American Idol, new shows debuted that became the talk of the nation.

A look at the Google Zeitgeist and the Lycos 50 for 2002 reveal that searches for reality TV shows are still prevalent, and best and worst lists (USA TODAY’s, The New York Post’s, the American Film Institute’s, The New York Times’).

While some shows bounced around from network to network (No Boundaries) or were just cancelled (Under One Roof), it looks like we’re won’t see the genre’s popularity break for a while, judging by the stream of shows that are being planned and renewed.

Unlike in 2000 and 2001, when reality blurred recapped the past year in reality TV, this year we present a link to the archives, because we are way too tired after the holidays to recap so much news.

And there was a lot of news this year—801 individual posts over 52 weeks, to be exact, although many of those contained multiple links to different stories.

So, dive in to the 2002 archives and begin exploring. From the debut of The Osbournes to Kelly’s victory on American Idol, there’s plenty to revisit.


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About the author

  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means. Learn more about Andy.


I value our community at reality blurred, which connects people through open and thoughtful conversations about the TV we’re watching and the stories about it.

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