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A New Season of MTV's "The Challenge" Is Almost Here! (And You Know It Makes Me Sick To Be On That List)

By Seth Freilich | Trailers | January 9, 2012 |

By Seth Freilich | Trailers | January 9, 2012 |

I have repeatedly professed my love for MTV’s “The Challenge,” formerly the “Real World/Road Rules Challenge,” the truest of true guilty pleasures. One of the things I love about the show, aside from all things ridiculous on the show itself, is that the premiere of the new seasons almost always take me by complete surprise. MTV doesn’t advertise them much, at least not anywhere that I’m inclined to encounter such advertising (and I realize this may simply be because I’m at least a decade beyond the network’s preferred demographic — fuck you, I don’t care). So it’s always a real treat when I find out about a newly impending season, as I usually find out just before it hits.

Such was the case yet again when, over the weekend, I learned that the show would be back this Wednesday with a sneak-peak of “The Challenge: Battle of the Exes,” which premieres in just a few weeks (January 25). Because there’s just not enough drama and angst with this incestuous group being put on generic teams, MTV is constantly trying to find a way to ratchet up the emotional tension. Last time, it was making teammates out of “rivals.” This time, it’s exes:

Last year, I suggested that “Rivals” might be the year MTV would finally include an actual murder during the season. I was wrong. And I don’t think it’ll happen this season, either. But they’re getting closer, right? We can’t be more than about 4 years away from “The Challenge: Running Man” at this point.

Anyway, did you notice, among the vets, that Mark is back, despite the fact that he “retired” a few seasons ago? I guess he realized he had no other meaningful way to generate a living. Also, in case you were wondering how old that mother fucker is at this point … Mark Long is 40! Jesus Christ. As the MTV Remote Control Blog puts it, “he’s TWENTY-ONE years older than itty-bitty Priscilla [I have no idea who that is], whom he might have to see in battle.” That’s fucking ridiculous.

And yes, it’s not lost on me that I’m (yet again) professing my unadulterated love for this show while not being all that much younger than Mark. Again, I don’t care, so shut the fuck up.

Anyway, here are the thirteen pairings:

  • Dunbar and Paula
  • CT and Diem
  • Aneesa and Rachel
  • Ty and Emily
  • Wes and Mandi
  • Johnny and Camila
  • Abram and Cara Marie
  • Mark and Robin
  • Dustin and Heather
  • Tyrie and Jasmine
  • Leroy and Naomi
  • Nate and Priscilla
  • Vinny and Sarah
  • I don’t recognize quite a few, as is generally the case now since I don’t watch “The Real World,” the incubation tank for “The Challenge” cast. But with CT, Wes and Abram, the show has a full heaping of nutjob crazy, so I’m god damned ready. Is it Wednesday night yet?

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    Seth is a Senior Editor and sometime critic. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.