Popular reality television game shows like Survivor and The Amazing Race have all lasted multiple seasons while keeping a strong following. Others have tried to recreate the success these shows had only to get canceled early on. Still, they were original and quite possibly deserved a chance to grow further with another season or two.
A fun reality show as close as you could get to actually going to war, Boot Camp pushed contestants to their limits. Those competing on the show were brought into a military boot camp and given the full treatment complete with drill sergeants ruining their self-esteem. The show’s climax was probably the best part of the whole season as the final two competed in multiple physical challenges and a jury vote from the previously eliminated contestants to determine a winner.
While the show only lasted one season it did have a one-night event where a celebrity version aired. The winner of this was rapper Coolio who defeated celebrities like signer Vitamin C, actor David Faustino, and witness at the O.J. Simpson Trial Kato Kaelin.
MTV’s show Fear lived up to its name. Each week contestants were brought to haunted locations like old prisons, abandoned mental hospitals, and cemeteries to compete in terrifying missions. It was like Scare Tactics without the friendly face with a water bottle at the end. Contestants worked as a team, able to dropout whenever they wished with the remaining contestants splitting the prize.
Fear was given a 10 episode first season and a shortened 6 episode second season. As popular as it was, the high production costs were what killed the show. VH1’s Celebrity Paranormal Project lifted the core concept of the show except instead of frightened young adults it was B-List celebrities.
13: Fear Is Real
A very unique premise that unfortunately was a little too complex for potential viewers to begin watching after the first episode, 13: Fear Is Real had 13 contestants competing against each other for a $66,666 prize. The Jeff Probst of the show is an unseen character known as “The Mastermind” who gives out orders and updates the contestants on the game, such as when their opponents have been “killed off.”
Most of the moments of fear on this show were created through careful editing. For the contestants though, turning them against each other was what made the fear real for them. This was done through temptations by The Mastermind. Had it been given a chance to build a larger following, this show could have gotten very creative.