Along with hollow resolutions to ‘exercise more’, ‘eat less junk’ and ‘be less of a judgemental cow’, the new year brings us a veritable smorgasbord of reality TV delights. Here are my picks available on free to air in 2017.
Designed to take on the Real Housewives franchise (which is outstanding by the way, do yourself a favour), Yummy Mummies will follow the “new first ladies of reality TV” throughout their pregnancies and first few months of motherhood. The four “glamorous young mums” involved are Jane Scandizzo, Lorinska Merrington, Rachel Watts and Maria DiGeronimo. I have no idea who any of them are except that apparently one is married to a former footballer (of course) and another appears to the be the wife of a celebrity hairdresser.
Whoever they are we can look forward to lavish baby showers, extravagant presents and luxurious baby moons, as well as one of the women legit going into labour while filming a piece to camera. Of course when her husband asked “who do I call first?” the answer was “you don’t call the hospital, not a manager, you call the producer.” We are truly living in the reality TV age and I for one embrace it as a thing of beauty.
The Last Resort: Love Me Or Leave Me
It’s a classic recipe: beautiful tropical island, troubled relationships, and a captive viewing audience. In this “real-life soap opera”, five long-term couples struggling with issues of trust and intimacy will take part in an “intensive relationship bootcamp” in a last-ditch attempt to save their relationships. After one month on an island resort, with only each other and a team of relationships experts for company, the couples must decide whether they will leave each other for good or rekindle their love. What could possibly go wrong?
A huge hit in Italy (naturally), this dating show – sorry, “match-making experience” – sees strangers strip down for a nice chat. Each episode, two pairs of strangers will strip each other down to their underwear, get into bed together and answer a series of personal questions. The aim is build as much intimacy as possible in just 30 minutes. At the end of the ‘date’ (wouldn’t be the worst date I’ve ever been on) each couple must decide if they will stay and get to know each other better or bail.
This show is already airing right freaking now and the first four episodes are available to watch on SBS Demand. Run, don’t walk. This is not a drill.
Bride and Prejudice: The Forbidden Weddings
There are many things I love about this show, not least of all that it’s a welcome throwback to the excellent 2004 comedy drama of the same name. An early promo reel featured audio clips including “I don’t want brown grandkids” and “that goldigger is just after his money”, so you already know it’s going to be a winner.
The concept is pretty simple: engaged couples clash with their parents who are at odds with their choice of life partner. Versions of the show have already screened in the US and UK, and if the preview is anything to go by the Aussie version is going to be exceptional.
PSA: In researching this post I discovered that every episode of Formal Wars is currently available for viewing on Plus7 so I don’t know what you’re even still doing here.