If there was a year that reality TV seemed to get extra crazy, it was 2017. Wasn’t this the year that every reality TV show seemed to have a major scandal involving the stars? Just about every single one of the “Real Housewives” shows seemed to veer dangerously off the tracks as part of some scandalous train wreck. Here’s a look back at the most scandalous reality TV moments of the year.
Rob Kardashian loses it over Blac Chyna
We always knew the female Kardashians were a completely different type of crazy, but Rob Kardashian was perhaps the craziest of them all in 2017. First of all, he goes on a profanity-filled rant on Instagram about Blac Chyna. He then goes on the full frontal attack, accusing her of being a terrible mom. He suggests that she’s already had over $100,000 in plastic surgery work. And he starts dropping nude photos of her all over social media, in a clear attempt to show what a wreck she is. Things get so bad that Blac Chyna was forced to get a restraining order – first against Rob, and then the whole Kardashian clan.
“Bachelor in Paradise” is plagued by rumors of sex scandals
Remember when the “Bachelor” reality TV shows were relatively well mannered and decorous? Well, 2017 was the year that the spin-off “Bachelor in Paradise” showed us just how scandalous and salacious things can get on the set of these shows. The major controversy concerned a possible sex scandal involving two cast members who might have had a sexual encounter in a pool. After these rumors began to circulate, the show took a lot of drastic steps – like inspecting all bags of cast members for illegal drugs. And, out of nowhere, footage of the reality TV show started to circulate in the media – but, guess which scenes were missing? Yes, that’s right, the scandalous pool scenes. We may never know what really went down on “Bachelor in Paradise.”
The biggest star of “Real Housewives of New York” has a disastrous meltdown
If there was one star of “Real Housewives of New York” that people loved to hate, it was Luann de Lesseps. Well, her plans to settle down with her husband Tom D’Agostino lasted all of about 7 months. They decided to file for divorce, but not before some incredibly salacious details got leaked into the media. For example, there were stories of some kind of physical attack in a New York City restaurant. And then, in an even more bizarre occurrence, it seems as though Luann got into a major scandal down in Florida. She got drunk and was arrested after allegedly kicking a Palm Beach police officer and screaming obscenities.
And that wasn’t all when it came to the “Real Housewives” reality TV franchise in 2017, because we had the following…
“The Real Housewives of Orange County” is at the center of an epic fight between mother and daughter
We’ve known all along that Tamra Judge and her daughter don’t get along, but 2017 was the year that it all blew up in public. They’ve had a very turbulent relationship, and it’s clear that Tamra was starting to get a little self-conscious about all this negative attention. So she posts a photo of her and her daughter on social media, suggesting that they might have patched things up finally and that things were going to regain some form of normalcy. But wait a second! Her daughter Sidney obviously wasn’t consulted in advance, and she decides to go on a mini-social media rant of how things are DEFINITELY not patched up with her and her mom. And the way she did it left no room for interpretation – things were still rocky, contentious and downright scandalous.
“The Real Housewives of Atlanta” gets involved in a catfight so bizarre that a cast member is booted off the show
From Season 3 to Season 9 of “Real Housewives of Atlanta,” Phaedra Parks has been a regular presence on this show. Fans have come to know and love her, despite all her shortcomings. But then, in 2017, something truly bizarre happened. It seems like Phaedra Parks completely lost it. She started spreading some salacious rumors involving two of her co-stars, insinuating that Kandi Burruss was trying to drug co-star Porsha Williams and then have her partner in crime Todd Tucker take sexual advantage of her. The tabloids referred to this as the “date rape,” and things got nasty real quick. By May 2017, the media storm around these rape allegations had gotten so bad that the “Real Housewives of Atlanta” had to boot Phaedra Parks off the show. This wasn’t some kind of media stunt to bring attention to the show, it was the sign that something incredibly scandalous was going down, and the show had to stop it before things got too bad.
One of our favorite bachelors gets arrested as part of a bizarre hit-and-run accident
Chris Soules has always been a fan favorite on “The Bachelor” – he seems like a honest, straightforward farmer that women love. But in 2017, we found out that he has a dark side. In April 2017, he got arrested after a bizarre hit-and-run accident. His car hit a tractor, and the farmer aboard the tractor died. However, Soules fled the scene of the accident, obviously hoping to avoid this tragic scandal entirely. But the police found him and arrested him, and now he’s headed to the courts for a trial in 2018.
The divorce of all divorces takes down the stars of the HGTV show “Flip or Flop”
One of the most popular shows on HGTV, “Flip or Flop,” has always been so successful precisely because of the brilliant dynamic between the two co-stars, Tarek El Moussa and Christina El Moussa. It was a marriage made in fix-it-upper heaven, right? Well, that was the case for the first seven years of their marriage, but in 2017, the couple hit a serious rough patch. They decided to call it quits after 7 years.
But they continued to tape the show! You can imagine all the awkward scenes on set, right? And throughout the year, we had the drip-drip-drip of crazy stories about this couple get aired in the tabloids. For example, one story was that Tarek was having sex with the former nanny of his children. Another story was that he was getting serious psychiatric help and entering rehab. But Christina wasn’t so pure herself – she was apparently shacking back up with an ex-lover who had a long felony history. All kinds of stories and scandals continue to swirl around this couple, and now the future of HGTV’s show is very much in doubt.
TLC star Derick Dillard decides to bash the transgender community
Things got particularly nasty for TLC in 2017 when one of its big stars, Derick Dillard of “Counting On,” decided to attack fellow TLC star Jazz Jennings (of “I am Jazz”). It wasn’t just that Derick was attacking Jazz over some imagined slight, or perhaps out of jealousy. No, the issue that Derick Dillard had was much more controversial than that – he had a problem with the whole transgender community, and couldn’t stand what Jazz was doing with his/her show.
First of all, Derick Dillard started insinuating that you couldn’t have a “reality TV show” about a topic like transgender issues. And then he raised the stakes on social media, where he started to question the use of which pronoun (“he” or “she”) to use when discussing Jazz. Although Jazz Jennings prefers to use the feminine pronoun, Derick started using the masculine pronoun at every possible opportunity. But Jazz wasn’t standing for any of this – he took to Twitter, accusing Derick Dillard of cyber-bullying. Moreover, Jazz started to rally the entire LGBTQ community around the very topical issue of cyber-bullying. Finally, by November 2017, TLC had to remove Derick Dillard from the network. Things had just gotten too hot for the show to handle.
The surprise return of Paul Abrahamian to Season 19 of “Big Brother”
Finally, one reality TV moment of the year that everyone was buzzing about was the surprise return of Paul Abrahamian to the “Big Brother” house in Season 19. Immediately, his return threw the house into turmoil. Here was one of the most outspoken, craftiest and talented members from a previous season – someone who almost won it all – and he was back. Alliances, as you can imagine, rapidly shifted. Having someone that powerful in the house was always going to be a huge risk. That really stirred up the pot for the show, and made it a must-watch spectacle.
As you can see, 2017 was really a spicy, event-filled year for reality TV. Just when you thought that things couldn’t get more colorful on the “Real Housewives” shows, long-time cast members seemed to spontaneously combust. And just when you thought that the “Bachelor” franchise was nearly unsinkable, it was surrounded by scandals. If you were looking for salaciousness and scandal, then reality TV offered it all in 2017.