With the explosion of reality television onto screens and schedules worldwide, this timely and original book explores makeover television, the reality format that cuts across all genres and time slots, yet has until now received little critical attention. Top writers and scholars take discussion of reality TV to the next level with this lively examination of the wide range of contemporary makeover shows, including Extreme Makeover, The Swan, American Idol, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy/Girl, Trading Places and The Apprentice, that ultimately speak to television's own enduring ability to reinvent itself. The book is organized around the overarching argument that contemporary makeover programming provides the paradigmatic example of reality television's far-reaching prominence and mass appeal, an appeal that lies in 'powers of transformation' - televisual performance that tries not only to capture reality but to intervene in it, with the ultimate aim of remodelling reality. Chapters examine how makeover programming annexes the private space of the home, transforms the body through surgery and rigorous discipline, recreates aspects of consumer lifestyle and social identity - in particular race, gender and class - and changes ordinary persons into celebrities and celebrities into ordinary persons. In each instance, readers will discover the amazing tenacity of makeover formats and their power to reveal public anxieties as well as private desires.