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7 Reality TV Competitions That Seem Really Damn Stressful

I’m glad that the competitors on reality TV are almost uniformly total boobs, otherwise I might feel pity for them; pretty much every show seems to be incredibly stressful, which is why it’s a relief that so many of them have been failing lately. Get those nightmares off the air wiso I can relax. But some reality shows are more stressful than others, and I think the following would be the most difficult to endure as a competitor:

 

Are You the One

Dating in your early twenties is super cool, because you think you have your adult brain but there’s a good chance you’re actually still running around with maniac-ass, teenager-level hormones coursing through your body. Did I say “super cool”? Because I actually meant “should be outlawed in every country across the globe”. Are You the One mixes what seems to be literally all of the alcohol on Earth with a bunch of people in their early twenties who think they are “bad at love”. The idea is that each contestant has a member of the opposite sex on the show that is supposedly “the one” for them. It is unbelievable that no one has died during the filming of this show (though season four’s Gio honestly seemed like he was going to kill multiple people of both sexes during those 10 episodes).

 

MasterChef

Hell’s Kitchen is probably the more stressful of the Gordon Ramsey cooking competitions, but those people are all human garbage themselves, so it seems like he’s doing the world a service by making them go bonkers. MasterChef, however, presents you with the duality of Gordon Ramsay — alternately encouraging and tough. Not knowing which Gordon you’d get would be enough to slowly carve away at almost anyone’s psyche.

 

American Ninja Warrior

People train INCREDIBLY hard for American Ninja Warrior, and it can be over INCREDIBLY quickly. People wipe out on the literal first obstacle all the time, and then it’s all for naught until the next American Ninja Warrior (my God, that name). It’s not as if training for a very specific and difficult obstacle course will give you skills you can apply to the rest of your life, so the pressure to succeed is very high.

 

Ink Master

The very idea of permanently drawing on someone’s body is already immensely stressful to me (I don’t think I’ve ever not been worried about messing up every single thing I’ve ever tried to do, so the stakes here are high). On top of that, Ink Master contestants have to worry about their big screw up being seen by however many people watch the show. I don’t think that’s a ton of people or anything, but still.

 

Project Greenlight/The Chair

I really recommend both of these shows, because they do an incredible job of showing just how difficult both making a movie is, and how difficult film makers themselves are. On top of that, no seasons of either of these have produced a particularly great movie (Feast, a low budget horror film, is probably the best of them) so you also have the fear that, even if you get through the immense difficulties of low budget filmmaking, you have to hope that you’ll be the first competitor to actually make a good movie.

 

I Know My Kid’s a Star

I only stumbled onto I Know My Kid’s a Star while doing research for this article, and let me tell you, this sounds like the freshest of Hells. The winner of this show — in which parents compete to see who can most upsettingly vicariously live through their unwilling child — receive 50,000 dollars and a one year contract with a “Hollywood talent agent” (let me tell you, that is not how contracts with agents work). I Know My Kid’s a Star wasn’t even popular, with the last few episodes eventually being burned off on deep cable, so those kids endured this nightmare essentially for nothing.

 

Shark Tank

Shark Tank is scary because you’re not actually competing against anyone but yourself — getting zero interest from the Sharks (man is that ever embarrassing when you’re just reading it like this) is probably both personally demoralizing, as well as just plain old bad optics for your business. This isn’t just a competition you’re doing with the hopes of winning some prize money, it’s your livelihood at stake.

Is there a particular show you have nightmares about competing on? Well keep it to yourself, nobody needs that worry planted in their own brain.

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