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AOL TV's Guide to Summer Reality Competitions

by Jean Bentley, posted May 26th 2011 9:00AM
Big BrotherIt's no secret that the networks pad their summer schedules with cheap-to-produce reality fare. And we're fine with that -- who wants to spend the summer indoors glued to the TV waiting for the next suspenseful episode of 'The Good Wife,' anyway? Instead we can come back from the pool/beach/watering hole of your choice and turn on some fun, mindless reality competition series.

One problem -- with a wealth of shows to choose from, how do we decide which ones to add to the DVR queue? From wannabe dance divas to house-bound roommates, here's a guide to the reality competition series vying for your viewership during the summer months. Which ones will you watch?

May 26
'So You Think You Can Dance' (Fox)

The Fox hit is back for its eighth season in a quest to crown the country's next dance superstar. Think 'American Idol,' but with tap dancing and jazz instead of country and showtunes.

May 30
'Platinum Hit' (Bravo)

Former 'American Idol' judge Kara DioGuardi is back in this competition to find the next great songwriter. Jewel is on board as host and judge.

America's Got Talent May 31
'America's Got Talent' (NBC)

Anything goes in this catchall talent show -- judges Piers Morgan, Howie Mandel and Sharon Osbourne are on a quest to find the country's next best comedian, or dancer, or opera singer, or juggler ...

June 1
'Love in the Wild' (NBC)

This brand new series seems like your typical dating show -- except for the fact that it's set in the jungle.

June 5
'The Next Food Network Star' (Food Network)

Wannabe TV chefs pitch their ideas for the channel's next great culinary series while current Food Network stars stop by to shill judge.

June 6
'Masterchef' (Fox)

The newest addition to Gordon Ramsay's food television empire is back for its second season. The show searches for the country's top amateur (read: at-home) chef.

June 12
'The Glee Project' (Oxygen)

You'll see at least one of these twelve aspiring TV stars on 'Glee' next season as the triple-threats compete for a guest-starring arc on the hit Fox show.

June 15
'Rocco's Dinner Party' (Bravo)

Up-and-coming chefs throw a dinner party for Rocco DiSpirito and his friends, who pick a winner each week.

June 17
'Paranormal Challenge' (Travel Channel)

'Ghost Adventures' star Zak Bagans mentors two teams of amateur paranormal investigators who compete to find the most haunting evidence to show three experts, who will decide a winner.

RuPaul's Drag UJune 20
'RuPaul's Drag U' (Logo)

Ordinary ladies learn how to unleash their inner diva from RuPaul and a team of drag queens.

June 21
'101 Ways to Leave a Game Show' (ABC)

This new adaptation of a British game show features contestants answering trivia questions. Sounds typical, sure, until you take into account the big twist: once they're eliminated, they exit in a crazy way (shot from a cannon, strapped to the wing of a plane, etc.).

June 22
'The Challenge: Rivals' (MTV)

The latest iteration of MTV's competition series featuring veterans of 'The Real World,' 'Road Rules' ... and other challenges.

June 23
'Expedition Impossible' (ABC)

Mark Burnett's answer to 'The Amazing Race' features teams traveling through Morocco and completing challenges.

July 7
'Big Brother' (CBS)

The summer standby returns for its 13th season of good old fashioned voyeurism as a bunch of scheming strangers compete to be the last one standing in the house at the end of the summer.

July 11
'HGTV Design Star' (HGTV)

Under the tutelage of HGTV stars Genevieve Gorder, Candice Olson and Vern Yip, 12 aspiring TV hosts/interior designers compete to get their own show on the network.

August 2
'Take the Money & Run' (ABC)

Contestants attempt to get away with the perfect crime. We don't know much about this show, but what we do know is that it sounds like it'll be fantastic.

August 8
'Bachelor Pad' (ABC)

Former 'Bachelor' and 'Bachelorette' hopefuls try one more time to get lucky in love.

'America's Karaoke Challenge' (ABC)
ABC's new series follows singers competing in the Karaoke World Championships.

Pick your poison: Which summer reality series is a must-watch for you?

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Boy, these shows look awful.

May 31 2011 at 1:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I could win on the show, I think.

May 30 2011 at 8:18 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

thank god for the internet! TV sure as hell has nothing to offer!

May 30 2011 at 7:55 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

hey i have a idea for a show its called how to save your home because sum meglamanic is the president and bumped the USA into a recession , whe theres no jobs to be found .

May 30 2011 at 7:23 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
Hello Carol

Never saw one reality show I liked yet...........give me a good movie of my choice!

May 30 2011 at 6:59 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

How can anyone sit and watch any of this mindless garbage?

May 30 2011 at 6:54 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

They are ALL garbage shows directed at people who live their lives through those shows. Better off watching Family Guy and The Simpsons.

May 30 2011 at 6:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The Voice is on mondays at 10 PT

May 30 2011 at 6:43 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to ptmmss's comment

It's on Tuesday on NBC on my TV/DVR.

May 30 2011 at 7:38 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Sharon Osbourn is actually an AMERICAN BORN AND BREED right here in the Good ole USA..........As for Piers yes he is a Brit (But they are our friends and allies--and the show was created there) And Howie is from Suburban USA-- Canada.

May 30 2011 at 6:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Richard, you are so right on! Get back to variety shows. I remember the good old days with Sullivan, Allen, Dean Martin, Smothers Brothers, .....even Sonny and Cher! I am so sick of making millionaires out of nobody no talents. Give us a break!!

May 30 2011 at 6:36 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

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