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Bravo Announces Top Chef: New York Contestants

Posted by Veronica Santiago Categories: Prime Time, Reality, Bravo, Cable, News,

Top Chef: New York cast

Although it seems like most reality shows kick off in New York, it’s surprisingly taken five seasons to get there.

For the show’s fifth installment, a change of location won’t be the only new thing viewers see. This fall, food critic and author Toby Young (How to Lose Friends and Alienate People) will be joining Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons on their culinary rounds.

Other additions to the series will be of the celebrity kind. (It is after all.) Celebrity guests this season will include Martha Stewart, the Foo Fighters, Rocco DiSpirito, and Natasha Richardson.

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Futon Critic


Reality contestant aren’t here to make friends…

Posted by Andru Edwards Categories: Reality,

Wanna know the secret to winning any reality television show? As the video compilation above shows, it’s all about not making friends. You hear it all the time on these shows, but do you really pay attention to how often those words are spoken? Check out the video for a reminder of what these reality shows are all about - you gotta be in it to win it. Don’t hate on these contestant for keeping their eye on the prize. After all, the name of the game isn’t “America’s Top Best Friend.”

Bravo Steals Another Reality Idea

Tabatha Coffey on Shear GeniusAs much as I love , am I the only one getting tired of their FOX reality rip-offs?

Today, the cable channel announced that it is producing a spinoff for one of Shear Genius‘s competitors from last season. Later this summer, the cameras will be following Tabatha Coffey as she “visits struggling salons in the Los Angeles and New York areas and literally takes over the establishments to whip them into shape.” While some may say a show about hair stylists has nothing to do with FOX, I say this production smells exactly like .

In fact, Tabatha’s Salon Takeover would be the second time Bravo has adopted a concept already seen on that other network. Hell’s Kitchen debuted in May 2005 while Top Chef coincidentally appeared in March 2006. And how about ? That reality hit program played a part in Step It Up & Dance‘s debut this year.

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Futon Critic

Top Chef Appeals to Youth

Top Chef logo

So how has Bravo chosen to fill their upcoming Project Runway void? By strangely choosing to expand into the kids’ market.

The cable network has just announced plans to develop a spinoff of its popular cooking show, . Sometime in the future, followers of the channel will be assaulted with a fresh-faced version of the reality hit. With Top Chef Junior, Bravo aims to “teach and test the skills of younger aspiring chefs and appeal to the whole family.”

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E! Online

This Week on TV (5/19-5/25)

So You Think You Can Dance, Sabra and Neil

(You can view TV Envy’s Summer Television Programming Schedule here.)


MONDAY (5/19)

Tonight’s Finales: The Big Bang Theory, Bones, CSI: Miami, Gossip Girl, How I Met Your Mother, One Tree Hill, Paradise Hotel 2, Rules of Engagement, Two and a Half Men

  • Gossip Girl (CW, 8pm):  “Blair comes to Serena’s defense and faces off with Georgina.” Well, I don’t think this is a fair fight at all. Georgina’s got mad Buffy skills!
  • Dancing with the Stars (ABC, 8pm):  Will it come down to the Olympic gold medalist, NFL’s Man of the Year or the Chilean actor? Never underestimate a man who telenovela fans supporting him.
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS, 8:30pm):  “Ted has an accident, and his close call with death finds him reevaluating his life and his relationship with Stella.” Yeah, I have no idea how he’s going to share her with either.
  • The Bachelorette (ABC, 9pm):  Season premiere. “DeAnna Pappas, the finalist who was spurned in 2007 by Brad Womack, is now dispensing the roses herself.” Why would anyone want to win if losing meant headlining your own show?

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Top Chef Chicago: Andrew Gets a Raw Deal

Top Chef Andrew OutIf three previous seasons of have taught contestants anything, it is that you always have to follow the judges’ rules for each challenge. If you don’t, you are the most likely target to be sent packing. In Top Chef, taste is subjective. So all things being equal, the rules are the deal breaker.

Andrew is the latest chef to learn that lesson the hard way. His over-confident attempt to create a healthy sushi box lunch for Chicago cops (???) fell flat with the judges, both because it didn’t taste very good and also because it was missing a food group required for the challenge.

The spastic 30-year-old New York sous chef joins Nikki who went home last week after her ineffectual role in the “Wedding Wars” episode. That leaves just six chefs left to fight it out for this season’s title.

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This Week on TV (4/21-4/27)

Ugly Betty, America Ferrera

(You can view TV Envy’s Post-Strike Television Schedule here.)


MONDAY (4/21)
  • Gossip Girl (CW, 8pm):  New episode.  “A dethroned Blair musters up the strength to head back to school, and Jenny tries to keep up with the financial demands of the in-crowd.”  Mondays are always better when other people are miserable.
  • Deal or No Deal (NBC, 8pm):  George Bush provides support to a war vet going for the million.  After three tours in Iraq, the President figured it was the least he could do.
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS, 8:30):  If you can’t handle the thought of humming a tune about sandcastles over and over again, this might not be the episode for you.
  • The Bachelor: London (ABC, 10pm):  “Matt accompanies Amanda, Chelsea, Noelle and Shayne to their hometowns.”  Being allowed to live in the U.S. takes more than just a sham marriage.  It means faking it with her family too.

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Top Chef Chicago: Episode 3

Top Chef logo

I’ve decided to enact a strict “three episode” policy for all reality shows. I won’t judge how good or bad the show is until I’ve sat through three entire episodes. This policy is painful at times, but necessary to weed awful shows out of the limited time I have to watch TV. (See .)

I’ve now completed my preliminary obligation to and despite some reservations (no pun intended) after the first two episodes, I’ve decided this could end up being a good season after all.

The fourth installment of the popular reality series takes 15 would-be celebrity chefs to the culinary mecca of Chicago. This season is a familiar blend of stereotypical characters from seasons past with one big exception: this time around there is a lesbian couple among the competitors (they compete separately, of course).

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This Week on TV (3/10-3/16)

The Real Housewives of New York City

(You can view TV Envy’s Post-Strike Television Schedule here.)


MONDAY (3/10)
  • The Bachelor: Where Are They Now? (ABC, 8pm):  “Highlights from past seasons include segments catching up with past bachelors (Andrew Firestone and Aaron Buerge) and former contestants.”  So the whole point of the show is to say there is no point to this show.  Look at how successful it’s been!
  • Canterbury’s Law (FOX, 8pm):  Series premiere.  “Julianna Margulies stars as a maverick defense lawyer who plays by her own rules to help the falsely accused.”  I’m guessing will still be on long after this program goes off the air.
  • New Amsterdam (FOX, 9pm):  Regular day and time.  If you didn’t watch last Tuesday or Thursday, I’m sure you won’t tonight either.
  • October Road (ABC, 9pm):  Special time.  In the season (series?) finale, “Eddie’s ex-girlfriend shows up to reconnect with him, causing problems in his relationship with Janet.”  Since we may never get a satisfactory resolution from this ratings-starved show, let’s just pretend Janet kicks her ass.

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Christian Siriano Wins Project Runway Season 4

Posted by Jacci Lewis Categories: Prime Time, Reality, Bravo, Cable, Editorial, News,

Project Runway 4, Christian Siriano

is officially kind of a big deal tonight. The 21-year-old freelance fashion designer accomplished two major goals: his collection won and he made guest judge Victoria “Posh Spice” Beckham smile. In fact, the usually enigmatic pop star told Siriano she’d love to wear anything he designed.

It is no secret that Season 4 of Project Runway lacked the drama and suspense of past years. There was no big twist in the final show either- no extra “look” to cobble together in the 11th hour, no scandals involving outside sewing help and no shouting matches between fellow designers. But what the show lacked in reality TV drama it more than made up for in sophistication and style. Each of the three remaining designers offered something new and fresh to the usually jaded fashion world.

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