A Glimpse Into Nigeria’s TV Culture: Top 10 Evergreen Reality Shows

Reality TV shows have become a staple of Nigerian entertainment, with viewers tuning in to watch the lives of others unfold. These shows offer a glimpse into the lives of people from all walks of life, from the rich and famous to the everyday Nigerian. These shows have been responsible for launching the careers of many Nigerian celebrities, and they continue to be popular with viewers.

In this article, we will take a look at the top 10 evergreen reality shows in Nigeria. These shows have stood the test of time and continue to be enjoyed by viewers of all ages.

10. Date My Family Nigeria

“Date My Family Nigeria” is a charming addition to the world of Nigerian reality television, offering a fresh and distinctive dating experience. In this engaging show, the suitor’s fate lies in the hands of their family and friends as they collectively decide whether or not a potential date is a suitable match.

The format of the show involves the suitor visiting the homes of three prospective dates, where they share meals and conversations with each date’s family. Based on these interactions, the suitor must make a choice. The chosen date then embarks on a dinner date with the suitor to further explore their compatibility.

This unique approach to dating introduces an intriguing blend of familial dynamics and individual chemistry, making “Date My Family Nigeria” an enjoyable and heartwarming journey of connection and discovery. As it creates moments of anticipation and heartfelt connections, the show stands as a testament to the enduring search for love in the most unconventional yet endearing ways.

9. Judging Matters

“Judging Matters” is a groundbreaking collaboration between the Lagos State Government and the Nigerian legal system, providing a unique platform for Lagosians to seek justice for minor claims. In the bustling city of Lagos, new disputes arise daily, overwhelming the conventional court system. This show steps in as a vital avenue for citizens to address their grievances.

The show is presided over by Justice Olusola William, a respected retired Lagos judge known for her legal acumen. As the host, the charismatic and real-life lawyer, Ebuka Obi-Uchendu, facilitates the proceedings, guiding the claimant and defendant in presenting their arguments. “Judging Matters” not only resolves disputes but also educates viewers about the intricacies of the law in a refreshingly straightforward and humorous manner.

By offering a glimpse into the legal process and highlighting the importance of seeking redress for minor claims, “Judging Matters” plays a crucial role in promoting access to justice and legal education. It stands as a testament to the power of collaboration between the government and the media to serve the needs of the people.

8. MTN Project Fame

“MTN Project Fame” is a music competition show akin to “Project Fame West Africa,” offering aspiring artists a shot at launching their music careers. In Nigeria’s inaugural season, the show paved the way for talented contestants to realize their musical dreams. It provided a stage where participants vied for the coveted opportunity to kickstart their journey in the music industry. 

With rigorous training, mentorship, and performances, the first season of “MTN Project Fame” in Nigeria marked the beginning of an exciting platform that continues to nurture and showcase the country’s budding musical talents. Around 2018, MTN withdrew its sponsorship of Project Fame, leading to the discontinuation of the music show’s broadcast. Although the telecommunications company didn’t officially clarify the reasons behind the show’s cessation, it triggered numerous speculations and discussions regarding the factors contributing to its discontinuation.  However, they are back and reloaded, The registration of the 2023 edition of the show is ongoing as of the time of writing, and the show will premiere on October 2023

7. The Voice Nigeria

“The Voice Nigeria” stands as one of the most beloved and sought-after music reality shows in Nigeria. Originating from the global sensation “The Voice of Holland” and established by Jon de Mol, this show has followed in the successful footsteps of its international counterpart. It’s a platform that shines a spotlight on the immense singing talent Nigeria has to offer.

The format of the show involves a rigorous selection process, where numerous contestants showcase their vocal prowess. The competition intensifies as the judges narrow down the pool to the top six or eight finalists who compete for the championship during the final weekend. What sets “The Voice Nigeria” apart is that the winner is ultimately determined by the fans, making it an immersive and interactive experience for viewers.

Renowned Nigerian artists, including the likes of Waje and Yemi Alade, have graced the judging panel, adding an extra layer of star power and mentorship to the contestants. Despite its premiere in 2016, the show experienced a brief hiatus after its second season in 2017, only to make a triumphant return for a third season in 2021. With its captivating performances and emotional journeys, “The Voice Nigeria” continues to captivate the hearts of music enthusiasts and remains a testament to the country’s vibrant music scene.

6. Young, Famous & African

“Young, Famous & African” is a groundbreaking reality show that defies borders and celebrates the pan-African spirit. Unlike many other reality shows on this list, it transcends national boundaries to showcase the lives and aspirations of celebrities from various African countries. This continental scope gives viewers a unique opportunity to glimpse the lifestyles, challenges, and dreams of well-known personalities from Tanzania, Uganda, South Africa, and Nigeria.

With stars like Swanky Jerry, the fashion icon, actress Annie Macaulay-Idibia, and her husband, the legendary singer 2Baba representing Nigeria, “Young, Famous & African” offers a mosaic of African talent and culture. It’s not just a show; it’s a continental event that resonates not only across Africa but also beyond its borders.

This show’s impact extends far beyond entertainment, as it fosters a sense of unity and shared identity among Africans. It’s a testament to the continent’s thriving talent and diversity, making it a must-watch for those seeking to explore the multifaceted world of African celebrities and their journeys to fame and success. “Young, Famous & African” has truly made waves, leaving an indelible mark in the realm of African reality television.

5. Nigeria’s Got Talent

“Nigeria’s Got Talent” is a dynamic reality talent show that forms a part of the acclaimed Got Talent series, making its debut in 2012. This electrifying competition showcases the nation’s most exceptional and diverse talents, from singers and dancers to magicians and comedians.

A significant portion of the show revolves around the exhilarating audition process. Contestants face a panel of judges and perform in front of a live audience, making their talents the focal point of the show. The judges’ reactions, along with the audience’s responses, contribute to the thrill and drama of the competition.

“Nigeria’s Got Talent” serves as a vibrant stage for showcasing the rich tapestry of talents that Nigeria has to offer. It celebrates the nation’s artistic and creative prowess while providing a platform for aspiring talents to shine. With each season, the show continues to captivate audiences and uncover hidden gems, reinforcing Nigeria’s status as a hotbed of extraordinary talent.

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4. Nigerian Idol

“Nigerian Idol” is a celebrated adaptation of the globally renowned music reality television show. Launched in October 2010, this show instantly became a sensation. It invited aspiring singers from all corners of Nigeria, aged between 18 and 28, to showcase their vocal prowess. Broadcasting on over 15 African stations, “Nigerian Idol” swiftly garnered a massive following and critical acclaim.

The allure of “Nigerian Idol” extends beyond fame, as it offers contestants a chance to transform their lives. The inaugural winner of the competition was not only crowned with the prestigious title but also awarded a substantial prize package. This included a generous cash prize of 7.5 million naira, a recording contract with Sony, a brand-new car, and an all-expenses-paid trip to South Africa.

This platform has not only discovered incredible talents but has also ignited a passion for music across the nation. As “Nigerian Idol” continues to evolve and inspire, it remains a testament to the country’s rich musical heritage and a springboard for emerging artists to reach their full potential.

3. Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?

“Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” is a captivating Nigerian game show, adapted from the original British format. Premiering on NTA on October 8, 2004, it quickly became a staple of Nigerian television. The primary objective of the show is to win a staggering 20,000,000 naira by correctly answering a series of 15 multiple-choice questions.

Frank Edoho has been the enduring and charismatic host of the show since its inception. After a brief hiatus, “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” made a triumphant return to the airwaves in 2021, with an even more enticing top prize of 20,000,000 naira. This revival captured the nation’s attention and ran from March 20 until April 9, 2023.

With its intellectually stimulating format and the potential for life-changing winnings, “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” continues to be a beloved and enduring part of Nigerian television, challenging the minds of contestants and entertaining audiences for years.

2. Gulder Ultimate Search

“Gulder Ultimate Search” (GUS) is an iconic Nigerian reality television program with a unique twist. Produced and sponsored by Nigerian Breweries Plc, it serves as a prominent vehicle for promoting the company’s flagship brand, Gulder. What sets GUS apart is that it was Nigeria’s pioneering 100% locally-produced reality show, with its debut in 2004 marking a significant milestone in the country’s television landscape.

GUS presents a survival-themed challenge where contestants must navigate through both the challenges posed by each other and the formidable forces of nature while on a quest for hidden treasures. The intensity of the competition results in regular eliminations, leaving only the most resilient and resourceful individuals to contend for the grand prize. The ultimate victor emerges as a symbol of strength, tenacity, and determination, earning both fame and fortune.

After a seven-year hiatus, “Gulder Ultimate Search” made a triumphant return to Nigerian television screens in 2021. This resurgence rekindled the excitement and enthusiasm of fans, cementing GUS’s status as a legendary and enduring reality show, deeply ingrained in the hearts of viewers across the nation.

1. Big Brother Naija

Big Brother Naija” stands as the pinnacle of Nigerian reality television, a cultural phenomenon that has captured the hearts and minds of millions since its inception in 2006. This captivating show invites a diverse group of young individuals to cohabitate within the confines of the illustrious Big Brother house for a thrilling and suspenseful ten-week journey. With the tantalizing grand prize of several million naira at stake, the contestants not only entertain but also compete relentlessly, making it a must-watch spectacle.

The show’s storied history is a testament to its enduring popularity. After an 11-year hiatus following the inaugural season, “Big Brother Naija” made a triumphant return in 2017, rekindling the nation’s fervor for reality television. Since then, it has become an annual extravaganza that transcends the boundaries of entertainment, sparking conversations, debates, and fervent fan followings.

“Big Brother Naija: All Stars” takes the franchise to new heights, serving as the eighth and final season of this iconic reality show. This special edition brings together a remarkable ensemble of housemates, cherry-picked from earlier seasons, including the unforgettable “See Gobbe,” the intense “Double Wahala,” the explosive “Pepper Dem,” the gripping “Lockdown,” the captivating “Shine Ya Eye,” and the aspirational “Level Up.”

What sets “Big Brother Naija: All Stars” apart is not just the reunion of beloved contestants but also the mind-boggling prize awaiting the ultimate champion. The winner of this edition will be bestowed with a life-changing 120 million naira, a sum that has captured the imagination of viewers and contestants alike. This grand prize serves as a testament to the show’s commitment to showcasing the extraordinary journeys and talents of its participants.

As “Big Brother Naija: All Stars” continues to captivate audiences across Nigeria and beyond, it reaffirms its position as the most iconic and beloved reality show in the nation’s television landscape. With each passing season, it creates moments that resonate with viewers and contestants alike, forever etching itself into the fabric of Nigerian pop culture. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a newcomer to the series, “Big Brother Naija” is an unmissable celebration of human dynamics, competition, and the relentless pursuit of dreams.


Whether you’re looking for a show that will make you laugh, cry, or think, you’re sure to find something to your liking on this list. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the best of Nigerian reality TV.