When you think of the pop culture from the early 2000s it’s hard not to think of reality television. This was an era that reality TV boomed and scripted shows flailed. Reality TV captured audiences in a way that scripted shows couldn’t. It featured real-life drama with real-life people. The 2000s produced a lot of great reality shows, but not all are worth revisiting.
Here is our list of definite reality shows from the 2000s that you have to rewatch.
Rock Of Love With Bret Michaels (2007 – 2009)TooFab
I love bad reality television. One time I watched five seasons of Flavor Of Love (mentioned later on) in one night. But I couldn’t even get through watching a full season of Rock Of Love because that is how terribly amazing this show is. Bret Michaels is the lead singer of Poison and women compete for his love and affection. Clearly, he never found love because this show lasted for three seasons. Bret changes what he wants from a partner every time he talks to a contestant. One minute he just wants a girl who is lowkey and isn’t a huge fan and the next he wants a crazy groupie-esque girlfriend.
Spinoffs: Rock Of Love 2 and Rock Of Love Bus.
A Shot At Love With Tila Tequila (2007-2008)Throng UK
A Shot At Love was a dating game show, but with a twist. Tila Tequila, who’s heart contestants were trying to win, was bisexual. This meant that the contestants were both female and male. Yeah, the show gave into stereotypes about bisexual’s, like that they are super promiscuous, but the drama that happened was amazing. A Shot At Love debuted at number one among 18 to 34-year-olds. Also, Tila Tequila is an amazing stage name.
Spinoffs: A Shot At Love II With Tila Tequila, A Double Shot At Love and That’s Amoré!
Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane (2007 – 2011)Hulu
Even though Life In The Fab Lane ended after the ’00s, it still counts. It showed on the Style Network, may it rest in peace. The show featured Kimora Lee Simmons, a supermodel, her three kids and what daily life is like for her. Kimora is extra and truly shined on her show. She lived lavishly and made sure she was always at the center of attention. Be prepared for the severe ’00s fashion trends.
Spinoffs: Kimora: House Of Fab
Flavor Of Love (2006 – 2008)Wikipedia
Flavor Of Love was a dating reality show where women fought for Flavor Flav’s heart. The show also featured his bodyguard Big Rick. The show’s contestants had more personality in their big toe than any other dating show. Seriously, New York and Pumpkin’s fight is an iconic reality show moment that will live in infamy.
Spinoffs: Strange Love, I Love New York, Flavor Of Love Girls: Charm School and I Love Money
The Girls Next Door (2005 – 2010)
The Girls Next Door followed Hugh Hefner and his current girlfriends, Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt and Kendra Wilkinson around the iconic Playboy mansion. The show gave the world a look at what the mansion is like when Hugh isn’t throwing one his iconic parties. The show personified Playmates and made them more human than Playboy ever could. The show was wild, lavish and turned models into stars.
Spinoffs: Kendra, Holly’s World and The Girls Next Door: The Bunny House
Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County (2004 – 2006)TV Guide
The stars aligned when Laguna Beach was created, these teens had no idea the fame and fortune that awaited them. The semi-scripted reality TV show followed around wealthy high schoolers at Laguna Beach High School. Laguna Beach launched Lauren Conrad, Lo Bosworth and Kristin Cavallari’s careers. When the show ended a spin-off called The Hills was formed. It was centered around Lauren Conrad’s move from the beach to Los Angeles. Thanks to The Hills the world was introduced to Audrina Patridge, Whitney Port, Heidi Montag, Stephanie Pratt, her brother Spencer Pratt and his best friend and Kendall and Kylie Jenner‘s half-brother, Brody Jenner. This show made mascara tears iconic and for that we give thanks.
Spinoffs: The Hills, Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, The Princes Of Malibu and The City
The Simple Life (2003 – 2007)TV Guide
The Simple Life followed rich socialites Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie try to accomplish low-paying jobs and tasks. The best friends made sure that viewers were never bored even though the jobs they were doing were beyond dull. The two spoiled rich Cali girls gave up their phones and credit cards to go live on a farm and work at fast-food restaurants. Paris and Nicole rose to fame and coined the term “That’s hot” and Paris invented getting paid to party.
Related Shows: Paris Hilton’s My New BFF and Candidly Nicole
Newlyweds: Nick And Jessica (2003 – 2005)Fanpop
This show followed newly married couple Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson in the early months of their marriage. This show withstands the test of time. Even though the couple is now divorced and Jessica said that marrying Nick was her biggest financial mistake, at least we got this show. This one of the first reality shows that became a cultural phenomenon. Jessica’s dumb blonde personality lead to some of the greatest one-liners of the 2000s like her debate if Chicken of the Sea tuna is tuna or chicken.
Fun Fact: This show was originally made for Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley in 1994.
The Osbournes (2002 – 2005)Bladdermouth
The Osbournes followed famous musician Ozzy Osbourne and his family Sharon, Kelly and Jack and how crazy their lives were. The show didn’t feature Sharon and Ozzy’s other daughter Aimee, who was vocally critically of the reality show. Antics ensured and followed the family through Sharon’s cancer and Ozzy’s near death ATV accident. The show actually won an Primetime Emmy in 2002 for Outstanding Reality Program.
Spinoffs: Osbournes Reloaded
Road Rules (1995 – 2007)TV Tropes
Road Rules is a spin-off from MTV’s other brainchild, The Real World, which is on this list. Road Rules had five to six strangers living in an RV, with no money, hunting for clues and missions for money. If they made it to the end of their journey they were rewarded. The show was a hit and snowballed into bigger and better things. It eventually turned into The Real World/Road Rules Challenge, which members from past seasons of The Real World would compete. That show eventually turned into The Challenge. This is the Russian nesting doll of reality TV.
Spinoffs: The Real World/Road Rules Challenge and Road Rules: All Stars
The Real World (1992)Wikipedia
To say MTV’s first reality TV show was a hit would be a severe understatement. The Real World is the longest-running program on MTV and is longest running reality show ever. The Real World features a handful of young strangers who temporarily live in a city together. The show pushed reality TV to the forefront of television and proved that it could be successful.
Spinoffs: Road Rules, The Challenge and Are You The One?
Honorable Mentions: Punk’d, Bad Girls Club, Queer Eye For A Straight Guy, Jon & Kate Plus Eight, Next, Room Raiders, America’s Next Top Model, The Anna Nicole Show, My Super Sweet 16, The Ashlee Simpson Show, Pimp My Ride and Extreme Makeover Home Edition