Good morning! There’s another busy week in reality television premieres ahead—and of course, the premieres are just a fraction of what’s actually on TV this week. More than two dozen shows premiered last week, for crying out loud.
I am actually crying out loud, because while I adore and love reality TV, I do not know where to find another 20+ hours to watch this week’s premieres, never mind the shows I’m already watching, nor all the specials. Could we slow down just a little? Please? Really? No? Well, okay, then, let’s get to our look at week’s premieres!
Below Deck: Mediterranean has ended its season, so that means it’s time for Below Deck to return (Bravo, Mondays at 9). During season seven, Captain Lee, Kate Chastain, and Ashton Pienaar return with a new crew as they serve rich tourists and create Bravo drama with each other.
Temptation Island is back with a new season and a new night and time (USA Network, Thursdays at 10). Meet Temptation Island’s four new couples, who will be challenging their relationships by separating and living for a month with single people.
If you can’t get enough romance drama: The Bachelorette season 13, starring Rachel Lindsay, is now streaming free on Tubi, as is The Bachelorette’s very first season.
RuPaul’s Drag Race UK premiered last week, and is streaming on World of Wonder’s pay streaming service, but it’ll be on cable for the rest of us starting this week (Logo, Fridays at 8).
A Very Brady Renovation has done very well for HGTV, so the network is adding two more episodes, even though the show ended last week. The new episodes are called A Very Brady Renovation: Behind the Build (HGTV, Monday, Oct. 7 and 14, at 9) include some of the “more than 9,000 hours of renovation footage that HGTV captured,” the network said.
Netflix moves into the music competition space with Rhythm + Flow (Netflix, Oct. 9, Wednesdays), which will try to discover a new hip-hop artist. Cardi B, Chance the Rapper, and Tip “T.I.” Harris judge.
Also new for Netflix: releasing episodes over three weeks instead of all at once. The first four episodes, which drop this week, are all audition episodes.
For a look at hip hop stars who’ve had an impact on our culture, there’s the new documentary series Hip Hop: The Songs that Shook America (AMC, Sundays at midnight).
In other documentary series news, there’s Why We Hate (Discovery, Sundays at 10), which comes from producers Alex Gibney and Steven Spielberg and is directed by Geeta Gandbhir and Sam Pollard.
Cash Cab is back, again, although now it’ll have some “Bravolebrities,” a word I still can’t get totally behind. The new series (Bravo, Mondays at 11:30) is hosted by original host Ben Bailey, but will have more pop culture-related questions.
Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. returns (PBS, Tuesdays at 8), and the celebrities who will be learning about their ancestors include Melissa McCarthy, RuPaul, Jordan Peele, Issa Rae, Nancy Pelosi, Zac Posen, Jeff Goldblum, Sterling K. Brown, Diane von Furstenberg, and others. PBS will be airing a few new episodes followed by repeats, spreading the 27-episode season across a year. More new episodes will air in January, and then again next October.
Inside the Actors Studio (Ovation, Sundays at 10) is back, but without James Lipton. Instead, a different actor each week will be interviewed by another actor, so it’s a new show each week.
Tiffany Pollard, aka “New York,” is back with a second season of her YouTube-only series Brunch with Tiffany (VH1’s YouTube channel, Tuesdays at noon). Her guests this season include Drag Race’s Jasmine Masters and Monet X Change. Watch the season-two trailer.
Dr. K’s Exotic Animal ER is spinning off a new series: Dr. T, Lone Star Vet (NatGeo WILD, Sundays at 9), which follows Dr. Lauren Thielen, aka Dr. T, after she moves to Texas to open her own clinic.
Also back this week: the reenactment-heavy, ghost-story-telling series Haunted (Netflix, Oct. 11), and the completely unrelated show Street Outlaws: No Prep Kings (Discovery, Mondays at 9).
Returning to look for ghosts/make television are Jason Hawes, Steve Gonsalves, and Dave Tango, whose new series is Ghost Nation (Travel Channel, Fridays at 9).
And in murder TV, there’s this new show: The DNA of Murder with Paul Holes (Oxygen, Saturdays at 7), which says that Holes will be “analyzing the physical and emotional ‘DNA’.” Is emotional DNA a thing, or is that why the scare quotes are there?
If you support Donald Trump’s policies at the border, give yourself 40 minutes this week to watch Torn Apart: Separated at the Border (HBO, Thursday, Oct. 10, at 9), a documentary that profiles two mothers who sought asylum in the U.S. after fleeing violence and abuse in their home countries. Upon reaching the U.S, they were separated from their kids: one mother didn’t see her son for 70 days, the other wasn’t able to reunite with her daughter for eight months. And they’re just two of thousands of families who were separated last year.
On the President’s Orders (PBS, Tuesday, Oct. 8, at 10) is not about the preside of the United States of America, but instead about Philippines’ president Rodrigo Duterte and his “bloody campaign against suspected drug dealers and users in the Philippines.” Frontline says it’s “shot in the style of a thriller” even though it is a documentary with “unprecedented access to the police … and time spent with victims.”
América (PBS, Monday, Oct. 7, at 10) is a documentary about a surf shop employee who returns to Mexico to care for his grandmother after she suffers an injury. He and his two brothers “clash over money, communication, and the considerable challenge of caregiving.”
And finally, this week will include the entirety of new three-night, six-hour special series called Taken at Birth (TLC, Oct. 9 to 11 at 9 p.m.). It’s about “more than 200 newborn babies illegally sold or given away from the back steps of a small-town Georgia clinic run by Dr. Thomas J. Hicks during the 1950s and 1960s,” according to TLC. On the series, the youngest “Hicks baby,” Jane Blasio, works with TLC stars Lisa Joyner and Chris Jacobs “to solve a decades-old mystery, reunite birth families and ultimately help them find closure, acceptance and truth,” TLC says.