Over the past decade – and the last few years in particular – reality TV has become a cornerstone of entertainment, and that isn’t going to change anytime soon. And while some people may still think of reality TV as tacky or invasive (which it sometimes is), the rise in popularity of the genre has also expanded the kinds of shows created. There’s still plenty of drama in reality TV, but today there’s a reality TV show for any interest – from romance to house hunting to dog whispering and more. Here are some of the best reality TV shows available to watch on DIRECTV.
MOST POPULAR REALITY TV SHOWS
The number-one reality TV show is one of the first of its kind, practically creating the reality format we know and love today: Survivor.
The show has seen an impressive 45 seasons of stranding contestants in a remote landscape. They must not only complete physical challenges, but also mental ones – forging and breaking alliances until a Sole Survivor is crowned.
If you haven’t watched Survivor, this is your sign to give it a shot. And if you love Survivor, consider checking out some of the other top reality TV shows listed below.
Want to watch Survivor and more? Take a look at the best streaming packages for reality TV fans.
COMPETITION REALITY TV SHOWS
Survivor may have started the adventure competition reality TV subgenre, but it’s certainly not the only one out there.
Referred to as “the most intense survival series on television,” History Channel’s Alone is another competition show that has surged in popularity in recent years. The general goal of the show is to, one, survive in the deep wilderness with only a handful of survival tools and, two, survive longer than the other nine contestants on the show.
With only 10 survival items and enough camera equipment to document their time alone, ten survivalists battle nature itself for a chance at $500,000.
The show has become so popular that there have been several spinoffs created. Read more about the Alone spinoffs here.
‘NAKED AND AFRAID’
Looking for a reality TV show that takes Survivor up a notch? Look no further than Naked and Afraid. Two strangers are left on a remote desert island with only the bare essentials — literally. Yes, they’re naked, but more importantly, they have no food or water. And unlike that other ever-popular survival show, they do it all for pride. There is no big prize money here.
REALITY FOOD SHOWS
If you’d rather watch contestants battle it out in the kitchen than the wilderness, there’s countless shows for that, too. And if competition isn’t your thing either, there are a ton of food-based reality TV series that aren’t based on competing, too.
‘DINERS, DRIVE-INS AND DIVES’
Featuring laid-back, likeable and oh-so-quotable host Guy Fieri, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives explores classic “greasy spoons” across America. Whether diving into comfort food, burgers or vintage drive-ins, get ready for a trip to Flavortown on this road-rockin’ reality TV show.
On Restaurant: Impossible, Chef Robert Irvine doesn’t just visit classic Americana, he finds failing family restaurants and attempts to turn them around with just $10,000 and two days. Menu updates, design changes and staff training are all on the table as he prepares for the grand reopening.
Prefer your restaurant-related TV reality shows with more theatrics? Vanderpump Rules is happy to oblige. Follow restaurateur Lisa Vanderpump, of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills fame, and her wild employees as they work, pursue their dreams and of course, have dramatic breakups and makeups.
REALITY TV DATING SHOWS
The next few shows on this list may be more in-line with what people think of when they hear “reality TV.” The past few years has seen an explosion of reality TV dating shows, so even if the genre wasn’t love at first sight, it could be time to revisit.
‘THE BACHELOR’ FRANCHISE
The Bachelor and Bachelorette from ABC have become almost synonymous with reality dating shows. And because these shows have become so successful, there have been a number of spinoffs to come out of them including Bachelor in Paradise and The Golden Bachelor.
Watch The Bachelor and its franchises online with DIRECTV.
PEACOCK REALITY TV SHOWS ABOUT LOVE
Netflix isn’t the only streaming service serving up unscripted series about love; Peacock also has its fair share of drama-filled dating shows to binge watch.
5 MORE POPULAR REALITY SHOWS
Those are just a few of the top reality TV shows viewers are watching today. In fact, the list above only scratches the surface of kinds of reality TV available to us today. Here are five more shows to check out next time you’re scrolling through tv channels.
‘CESAR MILLAN: BETTER HUMAN BETTER DOG’
Cesar Millan is back for another animal-focused show. In Cesar Millan: Better Human Better Dog, “The Dog Whisperer” and his paw-sonal assistants guide pet parents on a journey to better understand, connect with and train their best friends. Watch one of the best reality TV shows for animal lovers as Cesar rehabilitates dogs — but trains their people.
‘SAY YES TO THE DRESS’
Say Yes to the Dress focuses more on what happens after you find that one true love — especially the emotional task of finding the perfect wedding dress. The staff at elite boutique Kleinfeld Bridal are part stylist, part therapist as they help brides-to-be find the wedding dress of their dreams.
‘MILLION DOLLAR LISTING: LOS ANGELES’
If you’re more into the real estate of the rich and famous, Million Dollar Listing: Los Angeles is one of the best reality TV shows for you. Follow LA’s top real estate agents as they wheel-and-deal for well above $1 million and give you a peek inside homes in exclusive neighborhoods like Malibu and Beverly Hills.
Twin brothers Drew and Jonathan Scott are the Property Brothers, and they’re more into fixing up homes than selling them (although they will help their guests negotiate a great price). Then they put their expertise to work turning dreams into reality — and doing much of the renovation work themselves.
Ghost Hunters first aired in 2004, making it one of the original TV reality shows focused on the supernatural. Lead investigator Jason Hawes may be a plumber by trade, but he’s also a passionate fan of the paranormal. He and his team don’t just hunt down ghosts, they help families, hotel owners and more solve mysteries.
BINGE REALITY TV SHOWS WITH DIRECTV
The best reality TV shows may be up for debate, but the best way to watch them isn’t. With DIRECTV, you get access to tons of the most popular reality shows, right in your living room (or wherever you choose to get your binge on). From Bravo to HGTV to VH1, we’ve got you covered. So go get that glass of wine and kick back for some “me” time.
There’s more than one way to reality TV. Check out DIRECTV to find the right package for you.
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