TV's 20 Biggest Disappointments of 2011

Just as TV can exceed our expectations by, say, taking what felt like the umpteenth couples comedy and parlaying it into wonderful, weekly Happy Endings, gripping us tight with Homeland drama or reviving the primetime sudser with a delicious serving of Revenge, small screen fare can also let us down.

With 2011 drawing to a close, we reflected on 20 instances over the past year when, for one reason or another, the TV gods didn’t quite smile on us. VIEW SLIDESHOW

Emmys

Emmys 2011: What Show Should Win for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program?

Only two shows have taken home the prize since Emmy introduced the Outstanding Reality-Competition Program award in 2003. CBS’ The Amazing Race proved irresistible to voters for seven consecutive years, until Bravo’s Top Chef broke its streak by taking home Emmy gold in 2010. This year, both prior champs will face competition from …READ MORE

Emmys

Emmys 2011: The Reality-Competition Race In Review - Including Our 5 Dream Nominees

Secretariat is widely considered the greatest thoroughbred of all time, and yet not even he retired undefeated. Similarly, the Emmy race for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program turned into a real horserace last year when Top Chef claimed the top prize and broke The Amazing Race‘s stunning streak of seven consecutive victories.

Which shows are most likely to enter the starting gate when the Emmy Derby begins with nomination announcements on July 14? We handicap the likeliest contenders… after this. REVIEW CONTENDERS & VOTE

Top Chef All-Stars Finale: Would You Rather Eat at Iz or Tongue & Cheek?

Wednesday night’s Top Chef All-Stars finale was billed as a battle between crippling neuroses and delusional bravado — but in the end, it came down to raw hamachi with fried veal sweetbreads, garlic mayo, and pickled celery against a braised pork shoulder with pepperoni sauce, roasted cabbage, and turnips. And honestly, that’s exactly the way it should’ve played out. …READ MORE

Top Chef All-Stars: Should There Be Punishment for Breaking 'Chef Law'?

The shocked expressions on Carla and Tiffany’s faces when they heard the news from Antonia (see screengrab below) pretty much said it all: “Chef Law” was broken during the Quickfire Challenge on last night’s episode of Top Chef All-Stars, and things got officially Rated O…for Oh No You Didn’t!

Granted, maybe it wasn’t Richard’s smartest move to let …READ MORE

Top Chef All-Stars Recap: Takeover Target!

I can’t believe the way Bravo preempted last night’s episode of Top Chef All-Stars and ran an extended infomercial for Target in its place. “Target has an expanded store, with a varied selection of fresh produce and groceries. You can find anything you need to cook and prepare a delicious meal for an entire family,” cooed Padma Lakshmi, in her best “sexy robot gonna hypnotize you” tone. And just like that, I had an overwhelming urge to spend a minimum of $100 on breakfast cereal, flannel shirts, and cheap but durable kitchenware emblazoned with geometric patterns and/or hummingbirds.

Okay, okay…in all seriousness, …READ MORE