Discover 10 Entertaining Reality Shows Hiding on HBO Max
Following the merger between Discovery and Warner Bros. in 2022, there was a major upheaval in the original content availability on HBO Max that has caused a great deal of confusion about which shows are still accessible. The interruption led to the removal of several reality TV shows from the platform, further complicating things. However, don't be disheartened, as there is still a plethora of entertaining reality TV shows on HBO Max, ranging from cooking competitions, to sporting events, and even esoteric concepts.
The Big Brunch (2022)
Created by the renowned star of Schitt's Creek, Dan Levy, The Big Brunch is a diverting cooking competition that prioritizes the personal bonds between the contestants over the cut-throat culinary drama. The show is a contest among ten chefs for a grand prize of $300,000 that involves making appetizers, vegan dishes, hangover cocktails, and gaudy three-course meals.
The Big Brunch is an enjoyable watch due to its engaging communal feel, as competitors collaborate rather than compete with one another. The show eschews the salacious gimmicks of most reality TV programs and instead focuses on challenges that celebrate the joy of individual creativity and wholesome camaraderie among its participants.
Project Greenlight (2005–15)
One of the few original HBO reality TV shows that remain available on HBO Max is Project Greenlight, a captivating show that showcases the art of filmmaking and competition. The show features talented writers and directors who are auditioned and trained by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, providing audience members with a chance to follow the entire creative trajectory from scriptwriting to final edit.
For cinema enthusiasts, Project Greenlight is a superb opportunity to learn how the film industry has evolved over the years, especially with respect to the casting process, principal photography, post-production marketing, and more. The series highlights the effervescence of aspiring filmmakers, despite the daunting challenges they face.
FBoy Island (2021–22)
FBoy Island, a sinful guilty pleasure reality-dating show, is still available on HBO Max despite being canceled before the release of its third season (as per Variety). The show features three women on a tropical island joined by 24 bachelors, 12 of whom are "FBoys," or those men who are only interested in fleeting romance.
A Satirical Take on Island Dating Shows: FBoy Island (2021–present)
FBoy Island injects a satirical twist into the tired format of island dating shows, attracting viewers with its celebratory and FOMO-friendly atmosphere. Host Nikki Glaser's hysterically funny commentary and the bachelorettes' attempts to identify fake "FBoys" from genuinely kind contestants make for compelling viewing. This mindless, playful show deliberately sets out to mock the trampled island dating formula, offering a refreshing alternative for those seeking escapism.
Discover the Magic of Finding Magic Mike (2021–present)
Finding Magic Mike showcases ten male strippers as they compete for a $100,000 prize and the title of sexiest dancer alive, following them on their journey to regain their mojo. The show's vivid and vibrant stage performances are a feast for the senses, but it's the Mikes' candid admission of their background stories and struggles that truly pulls the audience in. A far deeper and more emotional show than one would presume from the premise, Finding Magic Mike is a fantastic melding of substance and entertainment.
Experience a Slice of Life with Shaq in Shaq Life (2020–present)
Shaq Life is a must-watch reality show for anyone who wants to see NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal in a completely different light. The show chronicles Shaq's daily life, allowing viewers to get a glimpse of his family and multiple business interests. The charismatic basketball star's infectious personality keeps the show vibrant and entertaining, while his dedication to charitable youth programs is both inspiring and informative.
Cook up a Storm with Selena Gomez in Selena Chef (2020–present)
Selena Chef is a delightful and laid-back cooking show that sees Selena Gomez teaming up with celebrity chefs to create delicious new dishes. The show's popularity lies in its easy-to-follow cooking segments and Selena's endearing amateur culinary skills. The beautiful celebrity cameos and charitable donations that conclude each episode make it all the more enjoyable. Overall, Selena Chef is a must-watch show that offers a warm and inviting atmosphere for viewers.
Legendary: A Ballroom Spectacle (2020–present)
Embark on a captivating journey into the world of voguing with Legendary, a riveting HBO Max original reality TV show. Witness the opulent fashion ballroom culture as LGBTQ Houses vie for legend status through breathtaking dance-offs, runway walks, and voguing battles. The challenges are nothing short of dazzling, leaving viewers spellbound with each new one.
Beyond the glitz and glamour, the show uplifts and empowers the LGBTQ community by giving them a powerful platform to showcase their talents. In a similar vein to Pose, Legendary adds a contemporary twist to ball culture by making real people the stars of the show.
The Hype: Couture on the Streets (2021–present)
For a peek into the world of cutting-edge streetwear, look no further than The Hype. This thrilling HBO Max reality TV show pits gifted designers against each other with a grand prize of $150,000 at stake. The panel of expert judges lends the proceedings an air of authenticity, heightening the drama and excitement.
Watch as the designers tackle challenges like crafting stylish threads for A$AP Ferg, creating Suicide Squad-inspired sneakers, or designing clothes for the Metaverse. The show oozes creativity and is a refreshing departure from the tired tropes of most reality TV shows.
The Big Shot with Bethenny: The Ultimate Business Competition (2021–present)
Bethenny Frankel, famous for her knack for quotable one-liners on The Real Housewives of New York City, has her own business competition show on HBO Max called The Big Shot with Bethenny. Watch as candidates compete for the coveted position of VP of Operations for Skinnygirl, working closely with Frankel herself.
Fast-paced, engaging, and witty, the show is never dull thanks to Frankel's larger-than-life personality and comedic timing. As an alternative to The Apprentice or Shark Tank, The Big Shot with Bethenny is a must-watch for fans of business competitions and reality TV.
Painting With John: A Therapeutic and Zen-like Reality Show on HBO Max
Step into the oddly therapeutic world of John Lurie with HBO Max's Painting With John. This reality show takes viewers on a journey like no other as the jazz musician and former actor recounts stories from his past while painting a new picture in each episode. Lurie's Zen-like approach is both meditative and playful, especially as he works alongside his caring companions, Nesrin and Ann Mary.
Despite his struggles with a Lyme disease diagnosis, Lurie embodies the importance of finding joy in life, even if only for a few minutes a day. Through absurd but engaging daily outdoor activities, he encourages viewers to do the same, captivating casual art enthusiasts and fans of Fishing With John alike.
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