The Most Dangerous Reality TV Shows — Literally (and Figuratively)

In 2020, one contestant died after completing the obstacle course on 'Wipeout.'

Brandon Charles - Author

Feb. 26 2024, Published 4:19 p.m. ET

Wipeout and Survivor
Source: TBS, CBS

It’s much more fun to watch people risking their lives to actually risk your life. There’s a reason Jackass has been popular for multiple decades by multiple generations.

With hundreds of reality TV shows, there's something about the dangerous ones that feel more real. If you can see yourself struggling with a challenge, it's more entertaining. The more dangerous that challenge, the more entertaining the show.

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Obviously, everyone has different fears. I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! is terrifying if you’re scared of not being able to get out of here. Love Is Blind is a nightmare if you absolutely, positively need to see the person you’re going to get engaged to.

We’ve rounded up six of the most dangerous reality TV shows currently releasing new episodes. We stayed away from the shows that are celebrity-based, so no The Kardashians or Vanderpump Rules — even though they’re extremely dangerous for the emotional well-being of all cast members.

jackass dangerous show
Source: MTV Entertainment Studio

Scene from 'Jackass Forever'

We’re including shows that, in theory, you yourself could one day be on. And most likely get injured. Every reality TV show can wreak havoc on your personal life. Very few may lead to lost limbs or burnt extremities.

'The Amazing Race'

amazing race dangerous
Source: CBS

The long-running CBS hit has been traversing the globe since 2001. The description of the show is easy to understand and does not sound dangerous, “Eleven teams of two travel the globe to try to win $1,000,000.” Simple. Sounds fun. And if you've watched any of the 35 (!) previous seasons, it looks quite fun too.

But there’ve been enough major physical injuries for dozens of Amazing Race injury compilations. There’s also the emotional toll of traveling with anyone in stressful situations.

All seasons of The Amazing Race are available to stream on Paramount+.

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'Married at First Sight'

Source: YouTube

It’s in the title. You’re married. You’re going to see your partner for the first time at the altar. Ahhhh! This Lifetime juggernaut is 17 seasons in and while it’s not as scandalous as the title makes it seem, you’re still getting legally married sight unseen. That is dangerous even if it all works out. At least you get a few weeks to decide if you're marrying on Love Is Blind.

354 episodes of Married at First Sight are available on Lifetime. Seasons 12, 13, and 14 are available on Netflix.

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'Mountain Men'

mountain men dangerous
Source: The HISTORY Channel

It’s not a bad thing to be afraid of bears. You’re supposed to be afraid of bears. We’ve evolved to be afraid of bears. The people on Mountain Men don’t appear to be afraid of bears even if there are many bears and bear-related dangerous situations. The History Channel show lives in the danger zone. The danger zone is rural parts of America with large bear populations.

Seasons 1, 2, 6, 7, and 10 of Mountain Men are available on Hulu.

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'Naked and Afraid'

Source: YouTube

It’s in the title. You’re naked. You’re going to be afraid. Even if you’re comfortable with being nude, on camera, for 21 days, you need to actually survive the experience. The danger, the afraid part, isn’t even the naked part. It’s wild. The Discovery Channel show is also in Season 17 and if you’re cool embracing nudity and brutal conditions, it sounds more like a vacation than an extremely dangerous show that could lead to, I don’t know, burning your penis. Which did happen.

All seasons of Naked and Afraid are available on Max.

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survivor dangerous reality show
Source: Robert Voets/CBS

Before Ozempic one of the best ways to quickly lose a lot of weight was to appear on Survivor. Unlike Ozempic, the goal of the CBS reality show that helped change reality TV is not weight loss. A perfect mix of The Real World, The Challenge, and beach, there’s a reason almost every reality competition show has borrowed from Survivor since its premiere in 2000. If you ever think it’s not dangerous, here’s a reminder more than two dozen contestants have had to be from the show.

All seasons of Survivor are available on Paramont+.

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Source: YouTube

It’s in the title. You’re going to wipe out. But if you’re anything like us, you’d be more than willing to break an ankle or two just to see if you could properly bounce on the very big balls.

While you’re more likely to be physically damaged from participating on Wipeout than any other show in this roundup, you will not be remembered. There are no storylines. It’s an obstacle course, plain and simple. It's the most fun of the dangerous shows.

Season 1 of Wipeout is available on Max. Seasons 1 and 2 are available on TBS.

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