When it comes to reality TV, there are plenty of options to choose from. In the U.S., fans have everything from long-running classics, such as America’s Next Top Model and Project Runway, to the new era of celebreality on VH1 with Candidly Nicole and Love & Hip-Hop. While the U.S. seems to have mastered the world of addictive reality programming, there are definitely international options that are worth making time for.
If you can’t get enough of the drama, shows like Geordie Shore and The Real Housewives of Melbourne should be on your to-watch list.
The Bachelor Australia
While the U.S. version has been on for 18 seasons — the next season premieres in January of 2015 — and spawned several spin-offs, the series is still very fresh Down Under. The second season of the show premiered in July and still has the exciting appeal that made the first few American seasons so enjoyable. But don’t worry, the Aussie version comes with its own quirks, including Aussie lingo (“Keen, how you going?”), a white rose securing you for two elimination ceremonies, and professional netballers.
Where to watch: Remaining episodes of season 2 are available on Tenplay.com.au.
Britain and Australia’s Next Top Model
While there are tons of international versions of Tyra Banks’ modeling competition, only two are really worth your time. The first is Australia’s take on the show, which has become a sensation Down Under. Because of its popularity, the show started doing live finales resulting in one of the best flubs in TV history — the host announcing the wrong winner. Meanwhile, the UK version features permanent judges, Elle Macpherson, Tyson Beckford, and Dannii Minogue.
Following the massive success of the Jersey Shore, MTV developed a UK version of the show. Much like the U.S. version, the show followed a group of gaudy twentysomethings living together and doing what young, drunken kids do. Over the course of eight seasons, the cast eventually left Geordie to explore other parts of the world, including Sydney, Cancun, and Barcelona. The show returns for a ninth season this fall.
Where to watch: Currently not available online in the U.S. but the show returns on Oct. 28.
The Only Way Is Essex
While technically not an international spin-off of any U.S. reality series, The Only Way Is Essex — TOWIE if you’re nasty — is very much the British version of The Hills. The same basic concept is there: Lauren is at the center of all the drama, her friends and co-workers live fabulous lives while battling it out to bed each other. If there’s any question about the show’s success, it’s still on after 12 seasons.
Where to watch: Stream the entire series on Hulu Plus.
The Real Housewives of Melbourne
While there have been countless spin-offs of the Real Housewives franchise, only two have gone abroad — though Vancouver hardly counts as international. In Melbourne, the wives know how to turn up the drama thanks to a psychic Jackie Gillies, who is on a witch-hunt to find out who among the group is having an affair.
Where to watch: Bravo on Sundays at 12 pm EST or stream online through your cable provider.