Reality TV 2008 The Year In Review
Since it is the end of the year I thought it was time to give my totally biased reality TV awards.
Best Australian TV Show
Winner: Project Runway Australia – It was the best Australian re-creation of a US show I have seen. The contestants were both talented and entertaining. The host, judges and the mentor were just as good as their US counterparts.
Unfortunately people who don’t have Pay TV were unable to see it, therefore the ratings of this show were not what they should have been.
Equal Runner Up: So You Think You Can Dance Australia and Australian Idol
SYTYCD Au just missed out on taking my winner prize because of a few teething problems at the start of the series.
It took a few weeks for this show to hit its straps, with a very nervous host Natalie Bassingthwaite, some dodgy choreography, and the judges not gelling, in particular Bonnie Lythgoe. These glitches should be ironed out in Season 2 and I expect it to be an absolute cracker of a show.
Well Australian Idol is almost compulsory viewing, and this year there was some great talent particularly the winner Wes Carr. The mentors we had like Chris Isaak, and Cyndi Lauper were much better then the geriatric mentors they had on the American show (think Neil Diamond, and Andrew Lloyd Webber).
The only criticism were the judges I think they may need to mix it up a bit in 2009. Dare I say it Kyle Sandilands was easily the most entertaining. With Dicko and Marcia both sleep inducing.
Honourable mention – Farmer Wants A Wife, Australia’s Next Top Model, and The Chopping Block.
Worst Australian Reality TV Series
Winner: My Kid Is A Star – This channel 9 production was abysmal. In fact it was so bad it was almost in the it is so bad it is good category. The production values were cheap and shonky. The talent of the judges and kids were non-existent. It ended being shown in the humiliating time slot of 12.00pm on Saturdays. Previous post here on why it was so bad.
Runner Up: Big Brother – Even with the new hosts of Kyle Sandilands, and Jackie O did not help this show. The show had gotten so far away from the original premise of watching strangers live in house together that it was now unwatchable. There were to many FHM wannabees, and really stupid people. Also too much producer interference with games, and twists and turns for me took the entertainment value out of it.
Thankfully it won’t be on our screens next year.
Honourable mentions: Dancing With The Stars, and It Takes Two.
Best Overseas Reality TV Program
Winners: The Amazing Race – Season 13, Survivor Fans V Favourites, So You Think You Can Dance, and Project Runway Season 4.
I am not being very discriminating. However The Amazing Race is one of my favourite shows, and going through the Ukraine and Russia was entertaining. Also watching the Superbad team get through each week even though they were hopeless was amazing.
Survivor Fans V Favourites was Survivor back to its best. There were blindsides, changing alliances, multiple sagas over the immunity idol, and even a romance. I don’t know why Channel 9 buried this in a 10.30 timeslot.
So You Think You Can Dance continues to entertain with great dances, even better choreography, and judges who know how to entertain on a reality TV show.
Project Runway Season 4 – This was the first season I had really watched the show, and it was fabulously entertaining particularly with the winner Christian Siriano, and Chris March.
Runner Up: Any Bravo TV program particularly, Top Chef, Top Design, The Rachel Zoe Project and The Real Housewives of New York City.
Honourable mentions: American Idol, Ladette to Lady, and America’s Next Top Model three zillion cycles.
Worst Overseas Reality TV Program
The Celebrity Apprentice – the celebrity’s are not celebrities and the format is tired.
Best Australian Reality TV Host
Kristy Hinze – Project Runway Australia. From the first episode she looked confident and comfortable on camera.
Worst Australian Reality TV Host
Jodhi Meares – Australia’s Next Top Model. A clear winner as she did not turn up to her own show’s live finale. Also could not ad lib at all. The judges out shone her.
Best Overseas Reality TV Host
Ryan Seacrest – American Idol. I was going to say Jeff Probst, Phil Keoghan or Tom Colluchio from Top Chef as they are the ones I really like. However Ryan this year with his witty adlibs really deserves the title as he has the much more difficult job. In fact I really liked him this year and he gave me some real laugh out loud moments.
Honourable Mention: Cat Deeley and Padma Lakshmi
Worst Overseas Reality TV Host
Winner: Elizabeth Berkley Step It Up And Dance. This show is only just screening in Australia, but this botoxed blonde was unable to invoke either warmth or wit.
Runner Up: Donald Trump who has really become a parody of himself.
Best Reality TV Villian
Winners – Kenley Collins – Project Runway 5, who managed to get everyones back up with her total self confidence and abrasive manner; and Jade Cole the egomanical model from America’s Next Top Model Cycle 6.
Runner Up – Demelza Reveley eventual winner of Australia’s Next Top Model. Demelza was caught out bullying another contestant Alamela. The producers managed to beat it up to ensure high ratings for this Foxtel 8 show.
Best “Oh My God What Is Happening Here Moment”
Winner: Paula Abdul judging a song that had yet to be sung. Theories that Paula Abdul was given scripts to read on Amercian Idol buzzed around the internet for months. If you need a recap on what happened go here.
Runner Up: Watching the live Australia’s Next Top Model finale and realising Jodhi Meares was not there.
Best quote from a Reality TV show
Hands down winner to Andrew from Top Chef Chicago “I have got a culinary boner.” Bravo have even made t-shirts with it on it.
Runner Up also goes to Andrew when taking about Spike said “I’m not gay but I would let him bang me.”
What do you think were the Reality TV highlights in 2008?