Sunday nights – a time for reflection and setting yourself up for success for the upcoming week. Gone is the sheer joy of leaving your office at 5:00PM on a Friday as you stare down the barrel of Monday’s 9:00AM gun. If you’re anything like me you’re easing into Monday with a cool and refreshing adult beverage. Liquor is for Saturdays so unless you’re going full send on Sunday it’s best to find a light beer of choice and sip on that throughout the day. Something you can watch golf to, if you’re into that. I’m not. I’ve tried. There’s not enough drama in it for me. I need artificially produced rivalries and scenarios edited to perfection in order to care about what I am watching. Sundays are for looking ahead into what glorious reality TV Viacom (mostly Viacom, but some other major networks too) have labored to share with us. Let’s look at the week ahead:
- American Idol (ABC) – The show that cursed us with American talent shows in every variety is back tonight. Simon Cowell is gone and replaced by whoever is available and trying to reinvent their careers. I should mention that I have never been one for talent/singing/dancing competitions. They all seem too formulaic for me, but then again, I watch the challenge every season and nothing really seems to change. Tonight is the first night of the new American Idol. Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and other country guy who is definitely not Blake Shelton (Not even trying to hide how much they are ripping off the voice this season) will host the most entertaining night of American Idol – the auditions! Expect a lot of raised eyebrows, quirky personalities and shocking performances from someone coming from the rustbelt who left it all behind to pursue their dreams. I’m actually dreading watching this but said I would. Lionel Richie probably said the same but at least he’s getting paid millions of dollars to do it.
- Summer House (Bravo) – This is honestly, without question, my new favorite show. The cast of characters assembled is nothing short of triumphant. This is Bravo’s second season with the Summer House crew in Montauk. We’ve brought back the old favorites: Kyle, Carl, Lauren and Stephen, but added some new blood into the mix as well (both are “meh”). Lindsay is back again too because Bravo wants us to participate in the will they won’t they get back together question with her and Garrett. No thanks, I am not biting. This past episode we celebrated Kyle’s birthday, which was possibly revolutionary war themed? There were Tories, Colonists, Stephen was the queen of England, and there was a blow-up pirate ship. They drink too much rose, hook up and yell with one another all in the span of about 48 hours before returning to city and waiting 5 days to do it all over again. This is much watch TV. Everyone I’ve recommended it to has experienced “more life” after tuning in. You should too.
- Teen Mom OG (MTV) – Drew claims this show is directly responsible for lowering the teen birthrate in America and I think I believe him. When you see how miserable the life of Farrah, aspiring porn star who is not a porn star but really an entrepreneur, is you too would never want a kid. Couple that with Amber who is constantly between human punching bags that make suitable replacement fathers for Leah and you begin to actively seek birth control at any cost. This season we’ve seen Farrah fall out with her mother (GASP), Amber bring home a new man who she met on a different reality TV show (Marriage bootcamp maybe) after calling it quits with Matt, Ryan battle a prescription drug problem and Butch get sent to rehab for his always present drug problems. None of this sounds original at this point does it? This show is in desperate need of a pivot. I once pitched the idea to my friends of a show called “Makin’ Money” starring Butch. Each week we find him in a different odd job makin’ money. Of course, for this to work he needs to be clean. So for now I have to put the idea on the shelf. Tyler, make Butch well!
- Teen Mom Young & Pregnant (MTV) – If my previous synopsis of Teen Mom OG didn’t have you gassed up and ready for Monday’s episode don’t worry. MTV is bringing double the moms! MTV is going around the bend again with a whole new crop of teenaged mothers. We are just supposed to ignore the probably not very popular Teen Mum show we were forced to watch last season. This is different because it is more of the same American version. I don’t know much more about this show other than it exists and is on after Teen Mom OG. Rating Pending.
- The Challenge (MTV) – The challenge is like fine wine – the longer it’s on the better it ages. I’ve been watching the challenge since forever back when it was real world versus road rules. I know I just dated myself but I don’t care. At all. This show is too good. MTV literally struck gold. Every season they try and spin the show a little different to make sure we are not watching the same thing over and over and over. This season the theme is vendettas. The idea here is that every competitor on the show has some beef with someone else. That’s more true for others (Johnny Bananas) than it is for others (Nicole? Really? Who doesn’t like Nicole. She’s like Mrs. Steal your girl). Either way, MTV trots these reality stars back out for season 31 of this show. They’ve included some UK Beach House and Big Brother stars along with some Big Brother US contestants to add some not necessarily needed flavor to the Challenge Stew.
- Real Housewives – Fuck I am going to have to watch this for this blog. FUCK FUCK FUCK. There’s no escaping this show, it seems like any day of the week there is some real housewives of [Blank] on. It doesn’t even matter what time of day it is. It’s like always on. I just hope I don’t lose my mind as I watch this guaranteed shit fest. I mean I genuinely liked the Bachelor this is just like if there were a bunch of winners from the Bachelor all in a group hanging out without the Bachelors, right? Fuck. I think my girlfriend is secretly excited about this. We were at trivia one time and she absolutely killed it with the Housewives questions. I may have been dupped.
- Survivor: Ghost Island (CBS) – I haven’t watched this show since season two where maybe there was someone named Kolby on it? Did he come close to winning? My buddy Trevor and I would talk at length about how much we wanted to be on this show and also do the EcoChallenge. This lasted for about a year, or as long as that season of Survivor was on TV. I quickly forget about the tribe, Jeff Probst and starving yourself until you are so weak with hunger you are choppered-out and pumped with fluids. This season’s subtitle is “Ghost Island” and I think it is meant to add a hint of intrigue? Maybe the ghost of Richard Hatch, who is maybe not dead but probably should be dead by now, is the final boss? Apparently, there is also a budding bromance on the island so that’s reason enough to watch.
- RuPaul’s Drag Race (VH1) – I don’t really watch this but my girlfriend does. This season is all stars and she’s not very interested in watching it. That speaks volumes. She’s in a fantasy league for this and regularly wins. She’s currently in third, you guys. I think maybe this is an off season. I might watch, but I probably won’t. I fully expect people to go to other blogs to read up on this – I don’t know what clever witticisms I could offer. Please, don’t expect much from me here.
- Jersey Shore: Family Reunion (MTV) – I’m nervous for this one. Some things are better left in the past. The Situation hasn’t aged well. Snooki is a mom. So is JWow. Pauly D is a house DJ in Vegas now. Ronnie is doing fine making club appearances or something. Someone actually married Dina!!! I have no idea what to expect from this. I’m nervous, I’m excited, I’m doubting myself – this is like prom all over again except I don’t have to wear an ill-fitting pile pants Men’s Warehouse tux and try and match it to a gold sequined dress that my date wore.
- Master Chef Jr. – Oh hell yes. I’m starting to get to know the cast. Gordon, Joe and Christina are clicking. Kids are crying. They are making me doubt my culinary abilities. If the third episode of the season (hot takes pending) is any indication of what we can expect we are in for quite the rollercoaster this season. Shows like this always make me want to raise my cooking game and this season I’ve decided it’s time to stop buying store made pasta. I want to make my own. It seems not too difficult which means I am definitely going to fuck this up and spend approximately $20 making something that would have set me back about .99.
- Winter Break: Hunter Mountain (MTV) – Man this show was bad. It’s basically jersey shore meets the last 5 reality TV shows MTV cancelled mid-season. I liked It, but I like bad shows, so I am speaking with authority when I say it is bad. My girlfriend told me less than 200K people watched the debut episode. This is going to be cancelled. I can feel it. MTV is moving it to Friday in the hopes that it will pick up viewership. Friday night prime time is where TV shows go to do; we all know this. How many viewers does this show need to capture in order to make it to episode 4? Infinity. Your likely last chance to watch a house full of homely east coasters and one blond Cali girl live it up on Party Mountain ends Friday. Probably. I live about 2 hours south of Hunter Mountain so the party will continue for me regardless.
And that’s looking forward this week. Which show will provide the most thrills? At what point during the week will I seriously question every decision I’ve made to get to this point? Can I make it through an episode of housewives? Goddamit.