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Emmy Category Profiles: Structured and Unstructured Reality Programs – Hollywood Reporter

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The Hollywood Reporter’s awards expert offers his take on each of the nominees.
By Scott Feinberg
Senior Awards Analyst
Antiques Roadshow (PBS)
This staple of broadcast television, on which experts appraise items brought to them by members of the public, has been nominated for this award every year since 2005 but has yet to win. Its 18-episode 26th season, which featured a stop in Colonial Williamsburg and was shot with special COVID precautions, was not nominated for any other awards.
Fixer Upper: Welcome Home (Magnolia Network)

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This spinoff of the HGTV franchise that was nominated in this category in 2017 and 2018 also features hosts Chip and Joanna Gaines renovating homes. Its nine episodes, which finished rolling out last August, included work on a castle in the Gaines’ hometown of Waco, Texas. It wasn’t nominated in any other category.

Love Is Blind (Netflix)
Dating shows don’t have a great track record in this category, but this human experiment to see whether 15 men and 15 women can fall in love with a person without having seen them was propelled to a nomination — for season one in 2020 and now for season two — by its huge popularity. This is, however, its sole nomination.
Queer Eye (Netflix)
Netflix’s reboot of Bravo’s early-aughts show, on which “The Fab Five” offer life makeovers, has been nominated for this award every year it has been eligible. It has won four times, and a fifth win, which seems likely given its field-leading six nominations, would break a tie with Shark Tank and make it this category’s record holder.
Shark Tank (ABC)
The 24-episode 13th season of this show about entrepreneurs pitching ideas to investors — which has prevailed in this category four times before, most recently in 2017 — is up for just two prizes, the other being outstanding host (shared by Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran, Lori Greiner, Robert Herjavec, Daymond John and Kevin O’Leary).
Below Deck Mediterranean (Bravo)
This spinoff of Below Deck, which was nominated in this category last year, centers on the crewmembers of a European super yacht during charter season, this time in Malta. It is up for two awards (the other for picture editing). But a Bravo show hasn’t won this prize since Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List prevailed 14 years ago.

Cheer (Netflix)
The first season of this show about a Texas college cheerleading squad won this award and two others in 2020. The second season highlighted the toll that the pandemic took on the team, introduced a rival school’s squad and received a total of three nominations, half of the first season’s total — but it remains Netflix’s best bet in the category.
Love on the Spectrum U.S. (Netflix)
Young autistic adults explore dating experiences on this trailblazing show, the first season of which was set in Australia and the second season of which featured Americans. Some feel it infantilizes its subjects, but many others applauded it for showing autistic people in a way they’ve rarely been portrayed on TV.
RuPaul’s Drag Race: Untucked! (VH1)
RuPaul Charles has become an Emmy magnet — he has won 11 times — and not just for RuPaul’s Drag Race but also for this spinoff, which has been nominated every year since 2017, finally won last year and could win again for its 14-episode 13th season, which just garnered this year’s corresponding Critics Choice Real TV Award.
Selling Sunset (Netflix)
This reality show about L.A. real estate, told through the prism of one brokerage house and the adventures of the real estate agents who work there, has been streaming for five seasons and is nominated for the second year in a row. This is its only nomination, meaning that it is the least promising of Netflix’s three shows nominated in this category.
This story first appeared in an August stand-alone issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
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