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Looking back at the most awkward sponsored challenges on 'Project Runway'

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In the 10 years Project Runway has been airing, it’s never been known for its subtlety in product placement. (We can talk more about this near the Bluefly.com Accessory Wall, or maybe in the L’Oreal Paris Makeup Room, or perhaps by the Tresemmé Hair Studio—but only if we can grab a snack from this Samsung Food Showcase Refrigerator first. Wow, this Samsung refrigerator is amazing!)

This fact has never more apparent than when Runway features one of its favorite gimmicks: the good ol’ sponsored challenge. True, great designs can come from unusual inspiration (i.e. this look from car parts), but Campbell’s Soup doesn’t necessarily evoke “couture.” Still, regardless of the sponsor, Tim Gunn can sell any awkward challenge with gusto.

To celebrate the show’s premiere 10 years ago this week, here’s a cringe-worthy look back at some of the most egregious offenders: READ FULL STORY

'Project Runway' turns 10: How the show changed reality TV

These days, Project Runway is the TV equivalent of comfort food. Whether we’re bingeing on old seasons or picking up in the middle of the newest one, we’re soothed by the sight of half-dressed mannequins stuck with so many pins that they look like giant voodoo dolls, Tim Gunn’s “this concerns me” face, visions of taffeta grandeur floating down the runway, and Heidi’s impossibly long, lean legs.

But when it debuted 10 years ago this week, Project Runway was a novelty. A decade ago, the most popular reality competitions on TV were The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, Big Brother, Survivor, The Amazing Race, The Mole, and Fear Factor—shows that focused on pretty people trying to double-cross each other. America’s Next Top Model was already in its third season—but it was always more about gorgeous girls and drama than fashion. There was also American Idol, a talent-based contest—though it placed its emphasis on the audience’s judging of the contestants rather than accompanying the singers through their creative processes.

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'Watch What Happens Live': Andy Cohen picks his Plead the Fifth top five, previews 'Secrets Revealed' special

Andy Cohen has made an art (and a game) out of enticing some of late-night history’s most eclectic guest combinations to spill the tea, and the show is celebrating those feats on Nov. 16 with Watch What Happens Live: Secrets Revealed.

One of the show’s biggest gossip sources has been its long-running “Plead the Fifth” segment, in which celebrities from Cher to Shaq, Lindsay Lohan to Mike Tyson are confronted with three questions that have been tailored to get lips wagging and cheeks blushing. Rules dictate the celebrity can opt out of only one questionthough many stars (including Meryl Streep and Daniel Radcliffe) have gone the full Andy and answered all three.

EW asked Cohen to personally curate a list of the five juiciest, most revealing Plead the Fifth answers from the series’ five-year run. Below that, an exclusive clip from Sunday’s special giving the lowdown on one of WWHL‘s sauciest guest duos ever. READ FULL STORY

Bethenny Frankel returns to 'The Real Housewives of New York'

The past becomes present again, as Bethenny Frankel returns to the franchise that made her popular.

Bravo has announced that Frankel will be returning to The Real Housewives of New York for season seven, along with Carole Radziwill, Heather Thomson, Kristen Taekman, LuAnn de Lesseps, Ramona Singer, and Sonja Morgan. Frankel left the show after season three, attributing her departure to drama between cast members on the show, though her numerous spin-off shows with then-fiance Jason Hoppy and subsequent talk show also left little room in her schedule. READ FULL STORY

Extended trailer for Bravo's 'Girlfriend's Guide to Divorce' is full of drama, and hookups

Bravo released an extended trailer for their first scripted series, Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce, where “girlfriend” finds out about getting it on outside of marriage.

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'Manzo'd with Children' premiere react: Caroline and her Jersey gang return to TV

Caroline Manzo left The Real Housewives of New Jersey after five seasons of extended family drama, backstabs, and betrayal. So naturally, the next logical move would be her own Bravo spin-off—aptly and cleverly titled Manzo’d with Children.

The format of the docuseries conveniently has the makings of a classic network sitcom. With three kids in their mid-20s, Caroline and husband Al don’t suffer from empty nest because sons Albie and Chris have moved back home to save money for their growing black water empire BLK and daughter Lauren has taken the traditional route of staying under her parent’s roof until she gets married to longtime boyfriend Vito… next summer. Sister-in-law Jacqueline appears as the wise-cracking neighbor brought in for added color commentary and laugh-track-ready one liners. READ FULL STORY

Bravo's 'Extreme Guide to Parenting': Why do we love to judge bad parents?

There are two things that reality TV fans love more than anything else. One is judging people who behave badly. (Think: Real Housewives.) The other is anything “extreme.” (Think: Extreme Makeover.) So it was only a matter of time before Bravo used the word “extreme” to target what might be the most judgmental audience alive: people with kids.

Get ready: The Extreme Guide to Parenting premieres on Bravo tonight. READ FULL STORY

Bernadette Peters books guest star role on Bravo's 'Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce'

Broadway icon Bernadette Peters will guest star in the first season of Bravo’s upcoming original scripted series Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce, premiering Tuesday December 2. Peters will play Annie—the mother of divorced entertainment lawyer Lyla (Garofalo)—who comes to town to help her kids.

Girlfriends’ Guide follows self-help author Abby (Lisa Edelstein) as she goes through a very messy public divorce with her seemingly perfect husband Jake (Paul Adelstein). To bounce back, Abby turns to her divorced friends Lyla and former model turned entrepreneur Phoebe (Beau Garrett) for advice, as well as Delia (Necar Zadegan), Abby’s divorce lawyer—who happens to be a rival attorney at Lyla’s firm. READ FULL STORY

'Hotwives of Orlando': How do you parody what's already ridiculous?

Look, I don’t want any drama—I don’t want any drama—but I’m also not totally on board with The Hotwives of Orlando, a new Bravo-spoofing comedy that debuted on Hulu at midnight Tuesday. (Hulu Plus subscribers can watch all seven 22-minute episodes right now; Hulu Plus-less plebes can only see the first two today, while the rest will be released on a week-to-week basis.)

The basic gist: A large ensemble of ladies you already love (or should love), including Casey Wilson, Kristen Schaal, and The Office‘s Angela Kinsey, don an assortment of skintight dresses and tacky wigs to play the titular Hotwives, archetypes familiar to anyone who’s caught an episode (or 500) of Bravo’s indomitable Real Housewives franchise. Wilson is Tawny St. John (chyron: “Trophy Wife”), a Gretchen Rossi-esque bimbo who’s both having a hot affair with her trainer (played by… Joey McIntyre?!) and caring for her deathly ill husband (played by the delightful Stephen Tobolowsky; the joke is he isn’t actually dying). Schaal is Amanda Simmons, a Kim Richards-ian former child star (read: she appeared in prune juice commercials) whose drug addiction and alcoholism is played for uncomfortable laughs. Kinsey is Amanda’s sister Crystal, a devout Christian modeled on Orange County’s Alexis Bellino. READ FULL STORY

Exclusive: Watch the trailer for Bravo's first scripted series, 'Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce'

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Bravo is adding a new group of Girlfriends to its ever-growing collection of Housewives.

The network will make its first foray into scripted television with the launch of Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce, a new original dramedy from showrunner Marti Noxon based on the book series by Vicki Iovine.

“When we saw Girlfriends’ Guide, we said this is the thing we’ve been waiting for,” explains development exec Lara Spotts, adding that Bravo has been slowly and deliberately trying to get into the scripted game for about four years. “Marti Noxon is such a fantastic writer, and her script was so funny and so real. She writes from such a place of truth that it felt like something very much in the zeitgeist. It’s hilarious, it’s set in a very Bravo-feeling world…it really checked so many of the boxes that we were looking for.” READ FULL STORY

Meet 'Project Runway' Season 13's designers

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Modern Family’s Julie Bowen and Olympian Lindsey Vonn are among the guest judges who will decide who’s in and who’s out when Project Runway returns for a 13th season.

Previous contestants Ken Laurence (Season 12), Alexander Pope (Season 12), and Amanda Valentine (Season 11) will post their portfolios on Instagram to have the chance to compete against this season’s designers, who are: READ FULL STORY

'Top Chef' heading to Boston for season 12

Cheftestants, brush up on your chowder recipes — season 12 of Top Chef is shipping up to Boston.

Bravo announced today that the reality series will makes its New England debut next season, with host Padma Lakshmi, head judge Tom Colicchio, and judge Gail Simmons returning to oversee the culinary competition.

“Boston has always been at the top of our wish list as a location for Top Chef, not only because of its rich historical significance, but also because of its robust and ever-growing culinary scene,” said Shari Levine, SVP of Current Production for Bravo in a statement. “Top Chef will showcase the many facets of the city which in turn will bring its fresh, unique flavor to season 12.” READ FULL STORY

Bravo developing Jessica Biel-produced couples therapy show, more

Bravo to creativity!

After announcing a slate of new shows earlier this month, as well as a new scripted mystery drama produced by Jennifer Garner in development, the cable network announced five more unscripted original programs in development including a choose-your-own-adventure reality series and a new take on couples therapy, produced by Jessica Biel.

“Bravo is constantly developing projects to find the next big hit that resonates with our pop culture enthusiasts,” said Lara Spotts, Senior Vice President of Development for Bravo Media.  “From the resurgence of the fitness class craze to the raging debate around the word #bossy to an explosion of wealth in a totally unexpected location, our new development slate taps into the latest trends in today’s zeitgeist.”

Bravo has already tapped into the fitness world with Jackie Warner’s Work Out and the recent Toned Up, so that’s nothing incredibly new. But after exploring the many cities of Housewives, it is apparently North Dakota’s turn in the spotlight. I didn’t think this day would come either. Check out more info about the five series in development below:

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