This afternoon, Virginia Mouseler, CEO of TV observatory The WIT, gave a roundup of what popular reality formats would hit screens this year.
Shared themes include kids, classical music, and survival. There’s even a new “marriage therapy” show in which people facing divorce must survive together on a desert island!
Find her selection, culled from The WIT’s extensive database, right here:
Superkids (Talpa Global, Netherlands)
Talented kids compete in singing, dancing, magic, acrobatic and instrumental acts.
Prodigies (ESG, France)
A spectacular, often emotional search for prodigies under 16 in three classic categories: Dancing, music and lyrical singing. Who’ll become the nation’s favourite?
When the Orchestra Came to Town (DRG, Norway)
A symphony orchestra visits small towns to discover hidden talents, who are then mentored by orchestra members. At week’s end, they perform a concert for their community.
The Orchestra of the Nation (Tuvalu Media, Netherlands)
A jury of five pros cast hidden, unknown musical talents who are coached and trained by them. At the end, the jury presents a full orchestra of 65 amateur musicians.
Bullseye (ESG, USA)
Four men and four women push their bodies to the limit in three unique, outrageous challenges. Will you be able to hit the bullseye while, for example, being slingshot across the desert?
Blindfolded (ESG, Sweden)
A contestant takes on challenges while blindfolded. Once they’ve agreed to the challenge they cannot back off; after every level, the player gets a cash offer to “chicken out” and exit the show. The prize for following through could be 50.000€!
The Raft (Electus Int’l, USA)
Two sets of strangers are dropped into the Bermuda Triangle on a life raft. They must survive for six days without food or water, and get back to land before time runs out. There is no prize: Only bragging rights for surviving. (Sounds like a Robert Redford film.)
Stripped (ESG, Denmark)
Four young adults must get rid of all belongings, including clothing, then live for one month as normal in an empty apartment (which will include toilet paper, happily). They can take back one personal item per day—revealing what truly matters to them. Will clothes come first … or cutlery and toothpaste?
Prized Apart (SPTI, UK)
10 contestants take on challenges abroad, with the worst contestants flown back home weekly. A supporting team helps by battling in a studio quiz; if the studio team wins, the player is flown back for the next challenge.
Surviving Marriage (A&E Networks, USA)
Couples facing divorce are stranded on an island, with no modern conveniences and limited access to food and water. Will extreme physical and emotional exercises repair their relationships? The psychiatrists and psychologists on board the show consider it an extreme form of therapy.
Pray for Love (Zodiak Rights, Sweden)
Three priests and a Pentecostal pastor—two men, two women—seek love. Singletons who want to meet them can register.
Fathers’ Pride (LineUp Industries, Netherlands)
Four young gay men join their intolerant fathers on a trek through the South American jungles. The goal: To allow father and son to accept each other. Oh, yeah: The final destination is the Gay Pride parade in Buenos Aires.
Faternity Leave (Zodiak Rights, Sweden)
Overweight people get six months sick leave to focus on health and weight. Colleagues will believe they’ve resigned, but they really plan to return in six months as their new selves.
Run! (Elk Entertainment, Sweden)
Celebrity trackers spend 8 weeks hunting fugitive couples across the nation. Trackers must ‘tag’ them by capturing them on camera. Viewers can either help or mislead the fugitives—a bit like in Hunger Games!
Hangover (DRG, Hungary)
In this pop-up game show, party animals fight a terrible hangover, and each other, after two hours of sleep and a huge night out. Groups of friends can apply for the show by creating a Facebook event; two teams will be invited to have a huge party … after which the show really begins. The higher the hangover, the higher their chances of getting on the show. People who faint, puke or beg to stop are out. Winning team gets aspirin or Alka-Seltzer; real winners get an English breakfast.
Wild Things (Zodiak Rights, UK)
Dubbed “Beatrix Potter meets The Hunger Games”, six couples take the wild things challenge, which involves one putting on a furry suit and competing in woodland competitions while completely blinded by their animal costume. The winners get to leave the woods with a suitcase of gold coins, worth 10.000£.
The Puppet Show (Talpa Global, Netherlands)
Participants must create a puppet that can mime, sing, dance, do ventriloquism, etc. Jury decides the best one, for a 50.000€ prize.
The King (Rabbit Film, Finland)
7 fake contestants (actually comedians) sing songs live before a panel of fake celebrities (the same actors play both parts). Real viewers vote for the ultimate “King”.
Lip Sync Battle (Viacom, USA)
Hosted by LL Cool J, celebs compete in a lip-synching competition. The audience votes for their favourite performer.
You Are the Key (ESG, France)
Three businessmen seek the best person to hire. Headhunters choose the four best profiles, and viewers choose their favourite. The leader can use a “golden key” to save a candidate. If viewers think they can do better than the chosen candidates, they can send in a video and join.
Trade Up (Keshet International, Israel)
2 teams of families and friends compete for a dream car, but must choose the key that represents the right answer to a general knowledge question. Will they drive home with the car they’ve won … or will they risk everything to trade up for a potentially better one?
Babushka (Armoza Formats, Israel/France/USA)
Contestants, offered 10 giant babushka dolls, must open 8 for the chance to win up to $500.000. If the babushka is empty, they could lose everything.
Labor Games (Electus Int’l, USA)
Expectant couples are taken by surprise in a hospital delivery room … and must answer trivia questions to win free baby stuff. They literally ask them point-blank while they are waiting for ideal dilation to happen … then, upon getting a yes, wheel the set stuff into the delivery room!
1.000 Heartbeats (Sky Vision, UK)
Players get 1000 “heartbeats”, then answer questions and compete using their own hearbeat. Heartrate is measured in real-time; every faster beat reduces their 1000 heartbeat allowance. The faster their heart beats, the less time they have to answer the question. Who will flatline first?
The Assembly Game (La Competencia/Televisa, Mexico)
Two teams compete on an assembly line. A wrong answer makes the conveyor belt go faster—and surprises may appear on the belt to surprise or distract you. To win, you can’t just answer questions; you must also do assembly-line work, and teams can make competitors’ assembly lines go faster.