The Real World: Happy Fun Make Believe Unicorn Land!

I wish I had been older when The Real World began to air on MTV back in 1992. Looking at the premise of the show, I'm not sure you quite get how genius the concept was until you are older and have gone through parts of life that are ridiculous (you know, finding out that food isn't free, that the trash actually costs money to dispose of and they bill you...shit like this). Honestly though, you do hit a point in your life where you get out of college and move to a city, and for some of us? You spin the batshit crazy wheel o' craigslist and find random strangers that you can pick to live in a house and start getting real. Real meaning "this is terrible a lot of the time and STOP LEAVING USED BAGS OF TEA ON THE MANTLE" (hypothetical). I'm completely leaving out the awesome parts of the craigslist roommate phenomenon like a registered sex offender landlord living in your wall. Get it? That wasn't awesome OR a joke! That was me not being polite and getting real! TELL me I've learned nothing from this show. No seriously, that shit's real. Moving on. Seeing as I'm SO old now, I can lament the shitastic direction the show has gone and furthermore, I can understand why people look at our generation and the ones right below me and shake their heads at how presumably worthless we're going to be/are. Honestly. Watch an episode of the new season. We are basically now watching a group of frat/sorority rejects who aren't even THE INTERESTING ones. Oh and don't worry, this one is in the believable "real world" atmosphere of Cancun. You know, the place where the herpes flows like wine and the reality runneth over your cup during a match of tequila volleyball and 3pm blackouts by a pool.

Let me outline an episode of this season for you, followed by a rough character sketch for each party involved.

EPISODE: Crew wakes up after a late "DUDES NIGHT OUT!" Douchey guy says douchey things about being a douche last night at the club. Neglects to say he got girls primarily because he had a camera crew with the words "MTV" on all of their belongings with him all night. Girls talk about how they are so pissed at the guys, because they totally have to go pet dolphins today at an expensive, like, vacation, like, retreat. Girl says she's so over being fake, then talks shit about every girl in house. At retreat, girl who talked shit about guys for being out late sulks. Like hell SHE'S petting dolphins today. Everyone else ignores her. She looks passively into the skyline. What does it all mean? Answer: nothing. So she gets over it and totally apologizes to everyone. Except that one girl she talked shit about. Her and the girl talk shit about each other back at home. Inexplicably, another girl in the house turns on the girl she's been talking shit about with said girl. Randomly, someone calls their significant other who they will no doubt cheat on by episode four. Back to girls talking shit. They yell at each other. They are over the drama, they didn't sign up for this. Will they be able to work their tough cake job MTV gave them tomorrow? Some girl cries about global warming or some shit like that. This watermark appears in the corner of the screen over dramatic acoustic guitar music probably played by Dashboard Confessional. Scene.

Now, let me outline the characters of this years season. I have pulled a bit of their bio from the MTV show page just to hammer home who these people REALLY are.

  • Derek: "Derek is the resident nice guy...a friend to all. But watch out, he's not afraid to be brutally honest about anything and everything." Translation: He's the gay guy and they just can't say that in his bio, or they'd look kinda shady.
  • Ayiiia: "Ayiiia is a model and Hooters waitress. Although, Ayiiia is of Mexican descent and speaks fluent Spanish, this is her first extended trip to Mexico. She's definitely one to speak her mind." Translation: Ayiiia has ironically never really been to Mexico besides spring break that one time, and had huge boobs and a ridiculous name made up entirely of vowels (sometimes Y guys, sometimes Y), so we picked her. So far, two for two on people speaking their mind/being brutally honest.
  • Bronne: "A former nude model, he is the resident comic and life of the party, willing to do anything for a laugh." Translation: He's a meathead who tries to do everyone and may very well commit date rape. He says jokes like, "I'd dip my balls in that!"
  • Jonna: "Jonna is the roommate with the boyfriend back home. This multi-racial beauty swears from day one that she'll remain true, but how long before the temptations of Cancun get the better of her?" Translation: She's the girl who cheats on her boyfriend.
  • Joey: "Joey is the tall, skinny, tattooed rocker with the bad boy charm." Translation: He likes emo rock and turns out to actually be a really lousy frat guy who gets really quiet and emotive talking into the phone before commercial breaks, throwing you off.
  • Jasmine: "Don't be fooled by the small package. The five foot tall, ninety-five pound Jasmine has a lot to say and no problem saying it." Translation: We needed to fill the quota of at least one person who's not white, but couldn't really just come out and say that. This is the third person who is not afraid to speak her mind.
  • CJ: "CJ is the All-American boy, the heartthrob you can take home to mother. He's currently an NFL free agent punter." Translation: He's big, dumb and attractive. Nevermind that he's a punter. This is the guy who will presumably score the most ass.
  • Emilee: "Emilee is a sensitive girl who can let her emotions get the best of her. She also works at Hooters." Translation: She's the batshit crazy one. She also works at Hooters, so she's hot too and can share funny boob stories with Ayiiia!

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the real world! So if you were confused about your daily life where you pay rent, go to a job that takes, oh I dunno, eight hours of your day, and do mundane things like cleaning and paying bills, fear not: someday, if you audition hard enough, you too can live in Narnia. Just remember to spell your name obscurely. Or be gay. Or black. You have a much better chance of getting in, then.

Is it sad that I miss the more realistic unrealistic days of reality television?

Drew Hoolhorst

I have a black belt in feelings.