The 15 Most Fake Reality Shows on Television

by jvcc
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1. South Beach Tow

Miami New Times

The hijinks from within this show are just fantastic. Famed cultural icon Bernice (shown above) has done everything from pulling car doors off the hinges with her bare hands, to falling out of a parking structure — only to somehow magically survive and apprehend a violator moments later. Of course, this show is clearly fake (though very entertaining).

2. Duck Dynasty

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This wholesome family based in Louisiana became famous for their ability to create ‘duck call’ tools. The eclectic cast of characters on the show are almost all related from underneath the Robertson umbrella. However, producers reportedly have created ‘dramatic’ elements to drum up storylines. Additionally, reports indicate that the production team adds ‘bleeps’ into the final cut even when family members aren’t swearing.

3. Undercover Boss

Bill Inoshita/CBS via Getty Images

Millions across the country loved the premise of under-the-radar workers finally getting credit for their excellent efforts at work. Bosses of various companies would go undercover to truly see how their workers would be doing — as well as learning things about how they govern their business. In all actuality, reports indicate that the show is scripted — and that promises made to various workers aren’t actually kept.

4. Hardcore Pawn

Desiree Navarro/WireImage

A family run business in Detroit’s rough 8 Mile, Hardcore Pawn focuses on the Gold family and their pawn business. A plethora of very strange people come into the store on a daily basis. In fact, some of the arguments seem too unbelievable. Well…that’s because they are. Multiple people featured on the show have said that their ‘fights’ with the family were staged. We do find it odd that every episode features Les, Seth, and Ashley being yelled at by a customer (who’s invariably dragged out of the store by a gigantic security guard).

5. Project Runway

Gary Gershoff/WireImage

Though Project Runway is a highly popular show, it doesn’t mean it’s absolved from the dreaded ‘fake’ label. Multiple contestants on the show — including Jack Mackenroth and Daniel Esquivel — have publicly spoken about the inauthentic nature of judging. Esquivel in particular speaks to how producers allegedly tailored the show to sensationalize all contestants to somewhat of an extreme.

6. Cake Boss

Mireya Acierto/FilmMagic

Led by owner Buddy Valastro, Cake Boss quickly evolved into a reality show sensation. Viewers were captivated by the ornate cake designs created by Valastro’s team. However, things aren’t as dramatic as portrayed on television. Valastro himself is reportedly not at the cake shop when the show isn’t filming. Duly, some of the weddings or events shown in the program are alleged to be fake.

7. Ghost Hunters

Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for A&E

The show Ghost Hunters became somewhat of a phenomenon over the last few years. Multiple shows have spawned from the initial creation. Many have accused the show of being scripted. Former case manager Donna Lacroix even did an interview which essentially ripped the show apart from an authenticity standpoint.

8. The Jerry Springer Show

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I mean…are you really surprised by this one? The Jerry Springer Show is one of the most outlandish television programs to ever grace a television. From the storylines to the guests, and even the production team egging the crowd on, this show is not completely truthful by any means.

9. Storage Wars


Upon being fired, former Storage Wars star David Hester completely shocked fans by revealing that the show is indeed scripted. According to Hester, he admitted that the items found in the lockers are staged. Along with that, many of the auctions are staged by producers. Lastly, Hester claims that the interviews with the cast members are also scripted.

10. Jersey Shore

Tom Briglia/ WireImage

Jersey Shore first hit screens in 2009. Although the stars of the show are friends in real life, it doesn’t necessarily mean that its free from accusations of falseness. According to several extras and locals, much of what happens on the show is planned in advance. Even an attorney whose studio is across the street from the Jersey Shore digs said he’s seen rehearsals of their walkabouts — and that they frequently reshoot scenes from different angles. This includes repeating dialogue and rehearsing facial expressions.

11. Say Yes to the Dress

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The famous bridal reality show Say Yes To The Dress follows brides-to-be in finding their dream wedding dress at the Kleinfeld boutique in New York. However, producers vet the people attending the appointment with the bride. They will ask the outspoken individuals to repeat or stress a comment to make the scene more dramatic. The bridal boutique is much smaller and more crowded than on TV, giving the wrong idea to others who go and visit.

12. Fixer Upper

Roy Rochlin/FilmMagic

Like with most house shows, homeowners have already bought the house before filming even begins — meaning they aren’t really picking between the three houses at the beginning of each episode. None of the furniture or decor that Joanna Gaines so carefully arranges is included in the budget, so the homeowners only get to keep it if they want to pay extra. Not all the rooms in each house get redone, and there have been unsubstantiated claims that Chip only actually works on the house while cameras are rolling. Yikes.

13. Long Island Medium

Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for Extra

Theresa Caputo has made a living out of being a medium and connecting people with their loved ones who have passed. However, everything is not as it seems in this case. Caputo has been at the center of scandals which claim that all of the information about her clients and audiences in the shows have been given to her. Producers find out all of the information through social media, questionnaires and background checks. They then feed it to Theresa on stage.

14. Cupcake Wars

Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images

This show starts with four contestants from different bakeries from all over the United States. These contestants go through three rounds of competition baking cupcakes in order to be featured in an event with a display of 1,000 cupcakes. The first round generally features a challenge to use ingredients that you would normally not think to put in a cupcake, like ginger or hamburger. However, it is rumored that the contestants actually find out what the ingredients will be prior to the competition.

15. Basketball Wives

Alexander Tamargo/WireImage

Basketball Wives follows the lives of women married to prominent basketball players. However, not everyone has been happy about their own participation in the spectacle. Former cast member Matt Barnes stated in an interview that the entire show is staged and scripted. Basketball wife Tanya Young backs up his claims and describes how producers would pit women against each other and sow discord within the group.


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