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Steve's Mailbag, Volume 1 Edition 1

By Reality TV World staff, 11/30/2004 

Welcome to our debut edition of Steve's Mailbag. Each week, Steve Rogers, Reality TV World's chief reporter, will do his best to answer reader questions.

For our inaugural edition, Steve reaches deep into the mailbag to answer some previously unsolicited questions on topics ranging from currently hot shows like The Amazing Race and Laguna Beach to updates on former favorites like Mad Mad House and Paradise Hotel.

If you have a question that you'd like to see answered in a future edition of Steve's Mailbag, please email it to

I live in Montreal, Canada and was a loyal fan of the new show The Next Great Champ but it seemed to stop playing once the World Series began. It's now almost December and I hear the show has been cancelled. However you mention it will air the final episodes on Fox Sports Network. When will this air in the Montreal, Canada area?

- Patrick in Montreal

Bonjour Patrick, yes, despite setting off battles with reality super-producer Mark Burnett and sparking not one but two lawsuits before it ever hit the airwaves, Fox's The Next Great Champ suffered a ratings knockout from the beginning and was sent packing over to Fox's regional Fox Sports Network after its originally planned four pre-World Series episodes were broadcast.

Champ premiered on FSN on October 17 and crowned its champion during its ninth episode finale that was broadcast on November 14 (although its winning boxer will fight for the WBO Lightweight 8-round Championship in a bout broadcast live on FSN on December 3.) Unfortunately as Fox doesn't have any Canadian regional Fox Sports Net outlets, at this point the chances of a Canadian broadcast are probably unlikely, sorry.

I was wondering when the next season of Mad Mad House is going to air? I have become a BIG fan.

- Katie in the UK

Hi Sue, glad to see the first season of The Scifi Channel's Mad Mad House made it over to the United Kingdom. While the first edition of the series performed very well for Scifi (its March 2003 premiere drew over 1.5 million viewers -- more than double the network's primetime average) and producers were already at work casting a second edition of the series before the first edition even premiered, so far there hasn't been any official word as to whether Scifi has greenlighted the production of Mad Mad House 2 or when it would air.

I'm sorry. But, the ratings may be high, but I believe the American people are just simply puzzled by the stupidity of Bravo's Manhunt program.

- Marcel

Actually the ratings aren't that high -- the Carmen Electra-hosted reality series struggled in it's premiere, drawing only 453,000 viewers. And by somehow drawing more men than women despite the presence of nothing but tanned, toned, would-be male models, the performance also did nothing to dispel the once-highbrow network's growing reputation as the home of gay television (at least until MTV's new gay-targeting Logo network launches in 2005.)

Do you know if there is any way to obtain a copy of Average Joe 2's nine-episode season. It was the best reality tv show ever.

- David

Wow, that's some enthusiasm. Unfortunately Average Joe 2 is not currently available on DVD. However, GSN cable network ( the network formerly known as Game Show Network) did acquire the syndication rights to both the Larissa Meek-led Average Joe 2 and the original Melana Scantlin-led Average Joe edition, so check your local listings -- the network has been rebroadcasting the programs from time to time.

I am an avid watcher of The Amazing Race and love the excitement and competitions. I was very disappointed with The Amazing Race 6. The couples were so degrading & hateful to each other that it took away from the competitions themselves. I don't think this will help the ratings any.

- Sosburn

Based on the emails we received as well as the postings in our The Amazing Race message forums, many Race fans had similar feelings to yours. It hasn't seemed to effect the ratings however -- The Amazing Race 6's premiere drew the program's best premiere ratings since the debut of its original Fall 2001 edition.

Laguna Beach's Steve is the hottest male I have ever seen, way bettter then any guy on The O.C. Will we be seeing him or the show again in the future?

- Terry

Wow, first the best reality show ever, now the hottest guy ever -- there are some diehard fans in the mailbag today. While MTV hasn't officially announced anything yet, Gary Auerbach, one of the show's creators and executive producers, has been telling the media that they're hoping to film second season of the show with the kids who haven't gone off to college, as well as have "guest appearances" by those who went off to school. Rumor has it that some new juniors and seniors will also join the "cast" (after all, they need to start thinking about a possible season three!)

Just curious to what happened to Paradise Hotel? I loved the show and would love to see Keith back on a second season.

- Casey

More than a year has passed since Fox's Summer 2003 answer to CBS's Big Brother left the airwaves, but this remains one of the most frequently asked questions to show up in our mailbags. Despite some initial rocky ratings, Paradise Hotel recovered from a poor premiere to become a surprise summer hit for Fox. By the end of its run Fox executives were repeatedly gushing about it (and mentioning it in the same sentence as its other summer hit... a little show called The O.C.) and the network broadcast a "to be continued next summer" teaser at the end of the its finale.

Unfortunately for viewers, rather than go through with their original idea of bringing Paradise back as an annual summer series, Fox instead teamed with Paradise's producers to create Forever Eden, a Paradise-like series (even one of the producers termed it "Paradise Hotel, version 2.0") that unlike Paradise, would be "never-ending."

Despite the fact that Fox had given it an enormous (at least for reality TV) initial twenty-five episode order, Forever Eden debuted to mediocre ratings on March 1, and after bouncing the show through dizzying array of scheduling moves, Fox pulled the show from the air after only seven episodes were broadcast. At the time, Fox promised to air Eden's eighteen unbroadcast episodes as part of its summer schedule, but when it formally announced its summer schedule in May, Fox executives revealed that they had changed their minds and no longer had any plans to ever broadcast its remaining episodes.

That's it for this week's mailbag, if you have a reality TV question that you'd like answered in a future Steve's Mailbag column, please email it to

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