Best in TV: Best Reality Show

Part 6: "Dancing With the Stars," "American Idol" and "Survivor" were all contenders.
3:00 | 09/18/12

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Transcript for Best in TV: Best Reality Show
abc news and "people" magazine have teamed up to find out what you think are the greatest television shows of all time. And you registered more than 1 million votes. Now then, our next tv category has all but revolutionized television in the last 20 years. Reality tv. It has proved sometimes to our dismay that you don't always need actors or writers to make successful television. Everything you need to learn about life you can learn from reality tv, right? How to find your true love -- chantel, will you accept this rose? How to behave in restaurants. How to make your parents proud. There are shows about famous people and their talents. Your ass makes money, honey. Shows about making it in business. You're fired! In fashion. You're out! And in food. Go to the kitchen, pack your knives and get out. So what did you pick as the best reality show of all time? Your number five pick for the best reality show takes you out to sea where men risk their lives for the "deadliest catch." This is what it's all about. We're taken into this insane world of crab fishing on the bering sea. Is that all you've got! It's essentially, wave, wave, wave, crab. Wave, cigarette break, wave, wave, crab. Danger punctuates the tedious reality of life on these fishing boats. 800-pound crab pots slide, decks get slippery, and you can get swept overboard by a 30-foot wave. Man overboard! Man overboard! This deckhand is smashing his finger. That blur on the table -- that's his finger tip. These guys are chain-smoking, storm-beaten, very rough around the edges guys. In one month they can make a year's income if the crabs are biting. And you just watch, and you're like, oh my god, is there crab, is there crab? And I haven't been this concerned with whether there were crabs since college. Yes! Your fourth choice for best reality show -- a traveler's worst nightmare. We got a flight to make! But with the kind of prize you dream about, a million dollars, "the amazing race." Go! Now in its 21st season, the show racks up o awards tthe dismay of its reality show rivals. "The amazing race" wins the emmy and beats "american idol" every year. Teams of two race across the globe. Please go faster! Go now! Now, now! Deciphering clues and testing their nerves. But the biggest challenge might be getting along with your partner. You're psychotic! You know how you go on vacation with someone, and you want to kill each other, but you're not in a competition? Well, imagine being in a competition. When are you just gonna carry your own weight? Ow. Oh, my god. I hate you. This couple, unfortunately, did not meet the challenge. Y got to be the man right now. Well, you be the woman and be quiet then. ♪ and the number three best reality show, "survivor." "Survivor" became a blockbuster success because you really believed it was a game of survival. It was a game that put ordinary people on a deserted island, deprived them of showers and enough food, and set up a million-dollar prize. It was human nature at its best and at its very wst. If I were ever to pass you and you were dying of thirst, i would not give you a drink of water. My strategy is to keep everyone on my side, man. Two days ago I told you that plan. Listen to me, don't interrupt me. Now I don't trust her as far as I can throw her. From the south pacific to central america, "survivor" has transfixed viewers and showed that sometimes it's the fittest or maybe most devious who come out ahead. I'm planning something different, and it's a little sneaky. And the winner of the first "survivor" competition is rich. But losers can also be winners. This woman, elizabeth, was voted off the island but I voted her to join my tribe. Elisabeth hasselbeck. Welcome, elisabeth. "Survivor" on the air for 25 seasons and still going strong. The tribe has spoken. And at number two -- this is "american idol." A show with the power to make dreams come true. "American idol" didn't just award prizes, it launched careers. And the winner is -- kelly clarkson. From season one winner kelly clarkson, to jordin sparks, to carrie underwood, and this summer's breakout pop star -- phillip phillips. Phillip phillips. "Idol" has singlehandedly reinvigorated the music business. On the american top 40 countdown, we've had so many american idols in the last ten years, that it's -- it's truly made an impact on the chart. And because of "idol," ryan seacrest has become a household name. the most powerful men in hollywood. Though when "idol" first started, he was worried he might be votff. I was terrified. And I put on a bit of a brave face for the first couple of episodes. I wasn't quite sure how to run a live television show. Like seacrest, the original judges also became household names -- randy jackson. What's up, dawg? Bd paula aul and simon cowell, whom we loved to hate. I think you're amazing. Really? Amazingly dreadful. You have one of the worst voices I have ever heard in my life. But there's no denying that "idol's" golden touch has affected even the losers like "idol" runner-up adam lambert. ♪ There was a time when I was so brokenhearted ♪ do you think you should've won? Honestly, I got to the end and got all the opportunities out of the show that I wanted. I won in my own way. Perhaps the biggest example of "idol's" influence was jennifer hudson. Voted off early, she went on to win an oscar. ♪ and now the reality show you gave the highest marks to -- finally I am excited! Your choice for best reality show of all time -- "dancing with the stars." There's great dancing, there's great costumes, and there's dieting before your eyes. What's not to like? Actresses, athletes, playmates, olympians, and even other reality show stars take part in the grueling competition. The show is brutal. I need a break! Dancing at least five days a week, six hours a day, they burn off 7,500 calories every week. Why do I want to watch these

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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