[RR] “Speaking of entertaining, what about reality poker television shows? I have to admit that I’m a sucker for them”, claimed Roderick the Rock.
[SS] “I consider them a guilty pleasure; more of a pointless primetime puff piece than a poker production”, Stan the Stat admitted.
[LL] “I enjoyed some of the shows but couldn’t stand others”, Leroy the Lion added, “depending mostly on how much actual poker content there was.”
[SS] “Yeah, it’s a pretty wide assortment of shows. Somebody must have liked them though, because I have a list of proposed shows that’s even longer!”
Reality Poker Shows on U.S. Television1
|Show (Wikipedia link)||Network||Years (IMDB link)||Location2||Commentators||Notes|
|Best Damn Poker Show||Fox Sports Net||2008-09||Pechanga Resort (2008; Temecula, CA), San Manuel Casino (2009; Highland, CA)||Chris Rose (2008), Dave Stann (2009)||Two 7-week seasons, starting with 24 players, eventually split into Team Duke and Team Hellmuth; a.k.a. Best Damn Poker Challenge and a sequel to Ultimatepoker.com Showdown in the U.K. in 2005 with Duke, Hellmuth, and 5 players, including Liv Boeree|
|Face the Ace||NBC||2009||Cin City Studios||Steve Schirrpa and Ali Nejad||Amateurs face one to three poker pros in heads-up matches (for $40K, $200K, and $1M, all-or-nothing)|
|Ace in the House||GSN||2007||various homes||Cory Zeidman||Five amateur poker players play a single-table tournament against each other and a random pro (e.g., Mike Matusow in the first episode) for $10,000 ($20,000 if the pro has to rebuy for half of the starting stack); video playlist of the first and only episode|
|Annie Duke Takes On the World||GSN||2006||?||Annie Duke and Regan Burns||Four amateur poker players play each other for a chance at $10,000 against Annie Duke, who also advises them|
|King of Vegas||Spike||2006||Bally’s Casino Resort||Max Kellerman and Wayne Allyn Root||Six amateurs, three professional blackjack players, and three professional poker players compete in eight different games, four per episode (starting with blackjack, two of Caribbean Stud Poker/Craps/Horse racing/Mini-Baccarat/Pai Gow Poker/Red Dog/Roulette, and ending with Hold ‘Em)|
Proposed Reality Poker Shows1
|Show (web link)||Status||Year (video link)||Notes|
|Big Slick Poker Academy||to be filmed during WSOP in June 2014||2014||Reality show could just be overpromised marketing fluff from the poker training company|
|Poker Entertainment Network||entire poker network planned but already delayed a year||2014||New network was supposed to debut in December 2013 but now delayed until December 2014; 24/7 with Poker Tournaments, Reality, Poker News, Documentary, and Movies|
|Poker Night in America||in production?||2014||Poker playing and behind-the-scenes footage with Kristy Arnett, David “ODB” Baker, Lauren Billings, Shawn Buchanan, Eli Elezra, Layne Flack, Phil Laak, Mike “the Mouth” Matusow, David Levi, Greg “FBT” Mueller, Tom “Donkeybomber” Schneider, Gavin Smith, David Williams; Arnett and Billings won an open casting call|
|Pool, Poker & Pain||casting call in 2011 then nothing||2014||16 to 20 contestants learn and compete in pool, MMA fighting, and poker; created by Blair Thein with Doug Stanley, producer of Deadliest Catch|
|Great American Poker Challenge||tournaments were held but no show was produced||2013||Events happened early November 2013 at Planet Hollywood, but the promise of a reality TV show seems to have been lost|
|Queens Are Wild||announced by E! Network then nothing||2013||Follows four top female poker pros, including Maria Ho|
|Full House with Johnny Chan||sizzle reel created||2012||Five “up-and-coming” poker players (all Las Vegas cash game grinders) compete and get trained by Johnny Chan|
|Fatty’s: Where the Game Gets REAL||casting call then nothing||2010||Combines poker and fantasy sports but never seems to have gotten off the ground; Created by Scott “Mayhem” Einiger, who knocked Phil Ivey out on Day Two of the 2010 WSOP Main Event|
|Young Guns||5-1/2 minute trailer created||2010||Follows four online poker pros (Chris Sparks, Chris “The Captain” Jackson, Jurran “The Kid” Joshu, and Seth Otterstad) for two months living together in a Hollywood Hills villa|
- The tables are sorted by recency. Tap on the header to sort by any column. You need to view the post by itself for this to work.
- All locations are in Las Vegas, Nevada unless specified otherwise.
- Special props to Poker Tube for their amazing collection of poker videos.