Poor Scholars Real World Exchange: ‘Ex-Plosion’ is fantastic


The Real World is back on MTV’s airwaves and they’ve changed the format on some things with the new “Ex-Plosion” season. Now, after putting the Real World cast into the house for a few weeks, MTV sends in the cast’s exes to live with them for the remainder of the show.

Poor Scholars’ own Pat Flynn and Scott Phillips broke down the new cast — and format — in an exchange conducted last week. The duo breaks down the cast, potential Challenge competitors and the man that was born to be on the Real World: Cory.

Scott: Pat, I’m glad you’re caught up on this new season of the Real World because it is fucking golden. They’ve made some tweaks in the format to things and now added the addition of exes to the show, hence this season’s name, “Ex-Plosion”.

We’re about six episodes in now and the exes are in the house for a few episodes after their unexpected (to the cast) arrival. How are you enjoying the new format? Which characters are standing out for you?

Pat: Scott, This season of Real World has not been my favorite. It’s been entertaining, but it’s not Real World. I understand why MTV/Bunim-Muray would want to keep the RW tag on there. The show was getting ridiculously boring, and something needed to happen. MTV threw out it’s rule book, broke down the fourth wall and started having producers interact with cast members on air, and, obviously, invited their exes on the show after a month of being there without them.

I think a huge reason I’m not a fan of the new format is because I can empathize with the original six cast members. They signed up for one thing and got something completely different. And now they live in what appears to be a really crowded house with their exes.

As for the cast, these guys/gals have been unlike any other RW cast in a while. They all fought, banged and began relationships within about two shows. Here are my thoughts on these people. I’m gonna go longer on the original six, because fuck the new guys.

Arielle — Intelligent, beautiful, relatively laid back…not much to not like. Seems to stay on everyone’s good side, but as we saw with Cory’s fight on the street, she’s not afraid to jump in the middle of a fight. Watching her shut down Tom in one of the first episodes was great. Feel especially bad for her about the gf coming on the show, because Arielle came on it to do her own thing and this chick ruined it.

Cory — Love this idiot. Jenny pretty much summed him up by saying he’s all about surface. Not exactly a deep person and all he cares about at this point in his life is banging chicks and working out. Basically him and the Jersey Shore boys are gonna kick it at every MTV event they ever go to. Cory is a solid cast member. Hooked up with Jenny in the first 2 minutes of the season and took his ex in the shower 17 seconds after realizing she moved in. Also, jacked, proud, short-tempered, very capable and willing to fight.

Jay — Clearly doesn’t understand how cameras work. Keeps trying/failing to make out with chicks in clubs without being seen by MTV cameras. His mother passed away while he was on the show and all he did was go back for her funeral for a few days and took the cameras with him. This rubbed me the wrong way. I know I’m applying my sensibilities to this, but come on. Go home. Be with your family. Also, the whole getting girls’ numbers simply to prove to yourself and America that you can is the most over-compensatory move of all-time.

Jamie — Seems completely insane and still not over her ex that isn’t there. He’s there in spirit because she brings up the fact that he’s not there as often as possible. Watching her convince herself that she was confident at the club hours after Thomas broke up with her great. The episode before she was complaining how she couldn’t fit in her form-fitting clothes.

Jenny — Thinks she’s a lot smarter than Cory and Brian (her ex) when she’s not. Kind of funny to watch her talk down to them. She’s all over the board emotionally with Brian and they discuss their relationship more than any two people I’ve ever seen, ever. They’ve provided MTV with about 17 hours of raw footage of them using words they appear to have learned in therapy and applying them to their relationship, regardless of whether or not they actually fit. Her confessionals can be pretty funny sometimes, though. Couple good one-liners. Also, I don’t think a huge boob job has ever fit/helped someone out as much as they help her out.

Thomas — Young, idiotic, great. Dude gave Jamie the gf title drunk in a club just so he could hook up with her. (I defy anyone to tell me otherwise.) To me, Thomas is a firm reminder that I’m way too old to be watching MTV, but then I remind myself of how important The Challenge is. Good looking dude. The ladies love him and he handles it all kinds of wrong, which makes him fun to watch.

Scott: First of all, those cast write-ups were absolutely fantastic. I approved of many of your character takes and points. The exes just all kind of suck. They’re just there and taking up space with Brian being one of the few exceptions. Since he’s a meathead like Cory — fighting over Jenny — there’s just so much testosterone flowing through the house with those two sometimes.

And Brian is 27 and older than much of the cast. That makes it so much funnier.

The Jamie and Thomas debacle is unbelievable. Thomas is a college student at Texas — so is his useless ex, I can’t even remember her name, Hannah? — and Jamie was dating a guitarist and clearly just needed a rebound and things got out of hand.

I like the new format for a couple of reasons though:

1. It gives you more of a chance for star power and love triangles. Now that they’re basically adding in pre-made love triangles, the drama is just easy. Star power is tougher to produce, but you’re putting six people in and adding their exes, so you have to like the chances.

2. More potential Challenge players for those that enjoy that.

3. I like that they’re adapting more to modern world. Smart phone with camera for photos to be posted. Producers asking questions, which makes the viewer feel more in-the-know about the world. It’s different, but I like it.

4. They don’t have jobs anymore. They just drink, fight and have sex all the time.

Who do you think is the early MVP of this season?

Pat: First off, Brian is the only ex who doesn’t completely suck. Don’t get me wrong. He seems awful, but for TV he’s sort of great.The fact that he’s 27 is fantastic, especially when Jenny tells him to “act his age, not his IQ.” He’s so intense and seeing Cory every day is going to drive him over the edge. Judging from the trailer for the rest of the season, he and Cory go at it at some point.

As for Early MVP, man this is tough. I guess right now I would have to go with Cory. He’s hooked up with two people (Jenny/his now impregnated ex), both of which are roommates. He got in a fist fight in front of the house, fought verbally with Jenny in the house and I’m pretty sure he made fun of her for giving it up after just two days. Makes him the leader in the clubhouse up to this point.

Who you got for MVP?

Scott: I’m a big fan of the Cory/Jenny/Brian triangle because they’re all insane, but Thomas is single-handedly holding up the other love triangle with his crazed shenanigans. How about his legendary “Why do we need a label?” talk with Jamie at the park just days after his ex moved in? Or the situation with Jamie and his ex at the club? Or his back-talking of Jamie back at the house; almost taunting her.

For a young buck, he’s showing a lot of douche upside this season, but I also really like Jenny because she just loves to start shit.

That IQ/age line to Brian was awesome.

How do you think Jay and his girl play out? That’s kind of been on the back-burner this last episode, but I think he’s kind of a punk.

Pat: Gotta agree, tremendous amounts of douche upside being shown by Thomas. A lot of time I think the cast members’ moves are calculated for camera time, but I would argue that with Thomas it’s all simply a byproduct of his stupidity.

As for Jay, I think that guy needs to face the fact that he wants/needs to be single before he completely screws up anything between him and his gf. He obviously felt a level of commitment to her because he was trying to hide the fact that he was getting girls at the club. Turns out that’s tough to do when you’re mic’d up and there is a camera crew following you. I think it ends poorly because she finds out what he was doing. I don’t think that would even be bad because he doesn’t want to be in the relationship. He just doesn’t have it in him to break up with her. I think his past behavior, which I’m guessing one of the castmates will let out of the bag, will be the deal-breaker.

There’s no chance that kid is Cory’s, right?

(Editor’s note: This exchange took place before — and after — the latest episode in which we find out that answer. We detail this Cory/Lauren pregnancy angle more below.)

Scott: For America’s sake, I hope not. We don’t need Cory to have a kid right now and that would never be something I would root for. He’s too young and dumb.

Pat, with you being a big fan of The Challenge, which of these Real World cast members are best equipped to make an impact on that show?

Pat: Man, I think a few from this cast could be solid additions to the Challenge. The first and most obvious choice would have to be Cory. He is immature, has a huge ego, looks athletic, welcomes confrontation and places a tremendous amount of value on hooking up.

Jenny would be okay, because she’s probably an athlete. Take away the fake rack and she’s built like a someone that played on your high school softball team. She also has seemingly no issues with hooking up with people she doesn’t really know on TV. Watching her try to talk down to any veteran would be great terrible TV, too.

Arielle could be one of those people that go there and stay on a team because she gets along with people, doesn’t seem threatening and is pretty smart. She’d be someone that is kept on a team by the powerful veteran meat heads to do the puzzles for them.

It’s still only about half-way through this season of Real World, though. So this list will probably look different at the end of the season.

Scott: Alright, to close this one out, how about Wednesday’s episode?

We had MAJOR breakdowns with Lauren and Cory and Brian and Jenny (surprise, surprise) and some epic meltdowns.

To recap Lauren and Cory:

  • Lauren (ex) moves into RW house after Cory sleeps with Jenny.
  • Lauren sleeps with Cory (with no rubber, of course)
  • Lauren finds out she’s pregnant
  • Lauren reveals to Cory that she slept with another guy and the baby might be the other guy’s kid — maintaining that the second dude wore a rubber, even after Cory called her a liar (Note: She’s definitely fucking lying)
  • Lauren reverses course and tells Cory that she didn’t use protection with dude No. 2 and that the baby is not Cory’s.
  • Cory loses his shit and refuses to deal with Lauren for lying to his face (For once, I actually side with his actions)
  • The Real World cast, of course, is heading to the club that night so Lauren, “needing to blow off some steam” heads to club. Pregnant. (Note: She doesn’t drink in any scenes)
  • Cory, also going to the club, completely blows off Lauren and openly hits on another girl and gets her email address (seriously?) right in front of Lauren. Such a Cory move. Awesome.
  • Lauren tries to fight Cory’s new girl.
  • Cory and Lauren argue again.
  • Cory and Lauren make-up
  • Lauren decides to leave the show.
  • Single Cory is back on the prowl for Boys Night Out.

But the Brian and Jenny meltdown…. Oh, boy. That one is coming soon, folks. And it’s going to be completely epic.

The dudes have a “Boys Night Out” — with the ladies doing the same at a lesbian-friendly spot — and Brian and Jenny are “committed” to each other and promise not to grind on other women during the night.

Brian, of course, starts dancing and hitting on another woman and gets her number before making out with her.

Brian is so screwed. So, so screwed.

I’m convinced that the fights in this season are SO much better because the baggage between the people fighting is so substantial that these people really want to hurt each other and will do or say anything to get the upper hand. There’s just so much ammo here.

What did you think of last night?

Pat: Your Lauren and Cory recap was perfect. But Brian stole the show this time around with his flexing on the beach and his actions at the club. I was thinking that Jenny was being a little nuts about him potentially dancing with girls at the club. I thought this dude seems so psychotically committed to her that he wouldn’t screw that up. And he almost didn’t.

Then he made out with a chick on the way out of the club. To his defense, he looked hammered. Jenny banged Cory about 10 times the first 2 days on the show, so I feel like a kiss should be okay. Also, Tom referred to the “Bro Code” for when the boys go out together. Someone does not stick to that code, apparently. Jenny appears to find out in the next episode and looks to go ape shit.

Arielle’s storyline was okay. I don’t care how she dresses, but I feel like she was trying to have a ridiculous argument and her gf was tired of yelling “I don’t give a shit how you dress” at her. it all stemmed from anonymous people on the internet saying shit about her. That skin will thicken over time, I’m sure.

The Cory/Lauren situation was interesting. You knew she was lying about using a condom with the other guy. Then she finally copped to it and said she took Plan B and, obviously, it didn’t work. Cory was great in the sense that he’s cheated on Lauren and was thought to have knocked the other girl up and Lauren stood by him. First sign of pregnancy with Lauren and Cory gave her a lecture that made no sense and the blackjack dealer hand clap. Cory has displayed the kind of narcissistic behavior that only an American millennial could show in how he only thought of the way this ruined his potential future plans with her. His idiot no-hitter is still very much intact.

Scott: We also learn that Cory was a college football player on scholarship and some girl from back home faked a pregnancy. So he gave up his college scholarship to go be with her when she wasn’t even pregnant? Seriously, how stupid is Cory? Why would he give up his football scholarship either way?

(Editor’s Note: It is revealed by Cory on the Real World: Aftershow that the girl that duped him even had fake ultrasound photos and fake doctor’s notes to convince him that she was pregnant.)

Pat: You cannot apply logic to Cory’s line of thinking. That’s unfair. It doesn’t matter anyways. He was put on earth to do one thing. And that’s be on the Real World.

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