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'Next Great Restaurant': Delicious Reality TV

February sweeps ended Wednesday, so most broadcast networks are back to reruns and reality shows. TV critic David Bianculli says that one of the reality shows, NBC's America's Next Great Restaurant, is much better than the rest -- and makes him hungry for more.


Real Life Documentaries Trump Reality TV Every Day.

Reality TV shows like Real Housewives and Jersey Shore have given actual reality TV a bad name. As proof, TV critic David Bianculli looks at Boston Med and Gasland -- two new 'reality' programs displaying actual intelligence.


Susan Boyle's Easygoing 'Dream' Of A Debut.

The 48-year-old Scotswoman became an overnight star after her April 2009 performance on Britain's Got Talent, singing a chestnut of a ballad from Les Miserables. With five million copies of her first album sold since Nov. 23, critic Ken Tucker says, it's clear she's delivered what her fans wanted.


At 'Hopkins,' a String of Real-Life ER Dramas

Hopkins, which premieres tonight, is the sequel to a 2000 ABC documentary series that told intimate, very real stories about medical staff and patients at Baltimore's Johns Hopkins University. Fresh Air's TV critic has a review.


Guilty Pleasures: 'Project Runway' on Bravo

Fresh Air's critic at large tells us why he loves the high-fashion challenge Project Runway, a reality-TV staple now in its fourth season on cable's Bravo channel. Among other things, it's one reality show that's about something more interesting than forcing its contestants to eat bugs.


Three New Shows for November Sweeps

Three new prime-time TV series premiere this week: scripted dramas on ABC and CBS, and a new quiz show on ABC. This week also brings the season finale of ABC's Dancing with the Stars, and lots of other activity involving first-run weekly television shows. Our TV critic says that all this action is related -- and little of it is cause for celebration.


TV's 'Desperate Networks'

Bill Carter reports on the television industry for The New York Times and has written about TV for almost 30 years. His new book is called Desperate Networks and it has a mouthful of a subtitle: Starring Katie Couric, Les Moonves, Simon Cowell, Dan Rather, Jeff Zucker, Teri Hatcher, Conan O'Brien, Donald Trump and a Host of Other Movers and Shakers Who Changed the Face of Prime-Time TV.


Paul Weitz on 'American Dreamz'

Director Paul Weitz's new film, American Dreamz, satirizes American Idol and stars Dennis Quaid as a dimwitted U.S. president who goes on the show in an effort to save his falling approval ratings. Weitz's other films include American Pie and About a Boy.


As TV Season Ends, a Look Ahead

As May draws to a close, fans of some of television's biggest shows -- American Idol, CSI, Desperate Housewives, among others -- are being treated to season-ending finales. At the same time, TV is testing the waters for its fall season.


Family Bondsman: Tom Evangelista

Evangelista, a bail bondsman, starred in the now-defunct reality TV series, Family Bonds, on HBO. Evangelista was formerly an insurance underwriter who had a mid-life crisis and decided to go for a more colorful job.


Bounty Hunter Tom Evangelista

The new reality TV series, Family Bonds follows Evangelista's bail bonds business. Evangelista lends money to post bond, and if the customer doesn't pay up, he tracks them down. The show airs on HBO Sundays at 10 p.m. ET.


TV Review: 'The Apprentice'

TV critic David Bianculli looks at The Apprentice, the NBC reality show. After all other contestants are eliminated, the winner gets to work as a corporate president for Donald Trump.


Record Executive Simon Cowell

Cowell is one of the judges on the talent show American Idol, a spin-off of the show he co-created in Britain, Pop Idol. The show has made him famous for his brutally frank criticism. Cowell has spent 25 years in the music industry, and is currently with BMG. His new book is Simon Cowell: I Don't Mean to Be Rude, But...


TV Critic David Bianculli

TV critic David Bianculli on some of the newer reality-TV shows, such as Married by America and Joe Millionaire.


Review: 'The Simple Life'

TV critic David Bianculli reviews The Simple Life, the Fox reality show starring heiress and general party girl Paris Hilton. The Simple Life premieres tonight at 8:30 p.m.


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