Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli

Dear Reality Shows,

Listen, we need to talk. It's about these two-hour episodes, the twice-a-week commitments, the extended eliminations, the reunions... all of it. Our DVRS are tired, and so are we. In other words, it's not us. It's you.

Used to be that TV shows were once a week, and two-hours long only if they were, like, special episodes or season premieres. Now, it seems that every other reality show on the networks wants to eat our free time's face off. Two hours of Celebrity Apprentice. Three-hour Survivor finales. Four hours a week of The X Factor. Really? For two nights of manipulatively edited auditions? Please. Call us when Steve Jones takes the stage. Or when Nicole has something to say.

Honestly, it's like you don't even care about our feelings. Just when we were recovering from that three-hour Bachelor Pad finale debacle — which capped a season of two-hour episodes, fyi — Dancing With the Stars took over like the Greek monster of Monday nights and sprouted another 120-minute head, paired of course by a second installment on Tuesdays. And don't think you're fooling us by breaking things up into two different DWTS "events" like you did last night, ABC. That first hour was a needless clip show of the previous performances, followed immediately after by an elimination hour consisting primarily of clips of previous performances! That's not fun. That's exhausting — and slightly terrifying, given the whole "Nancy Grace nip slip" sitch.

So please, reality television, for the love of all that is so-called "unscripted," give us back a few hours a week. We love you to death, but there are other shows that need to be watched, too. How are we supposed to know if Glee is good-ish again if we're all trying to decipher Bruno? And it's so not fair to an upstart like Ringer — even with two Sarah Michelle Gellars, not much can compete with Hope Solo in spandex. You have got to relent, or we may have to do something drastic. After all, it's not just dancing C-listers and castaways and desperate singletons who can get voted off of TV, you know.

Think about it,
The Watercooler