Real World DC had series’ lowest-rated finale, episodes ever, surprisingly accepted violence

The Real World DC concluded Wednesday night, and just 1.1 million people watched, which is “the smallest finale audience in the show’s 23-edition history,” according to The Washington Post. In addition, this season had “the three least-watched episodes ever,” and of “the six least watched ‘Real World’ episodes ever,” five were from this season.

That’s despite the unprecedented pre-season media attention, but perhaps this is because, as Jon Murray told RealScreen, this season was supposed to show a “different side of being 22″ and emphasize “that idealistic side.”

But while I didn’t watch the whole season, what I did see and what I’ve read about made it seem pretty consistent with previous seasons. Lisa de Moraes pointed out that during the finale, several cast members were “stripping off various items of clothing and running around the neighborhood, reminding the residents of Dupont Circle how much they’re going to miss these idealistic kids.”

Besides sex, there was also a lot of violence. Back in February, Best Week Ever’s Michelle Collins wrote a blog post titled “Remember When People Used To Get Kicked Off ‘The Real World’ For Abuse?”, pointing out that “The amount of physical confrontations that are happening this season are out of control.”

There don’t seem to be real consequences any more, and that’s apparently continuing into the 24th season, which is now being filmed in New Orleans. A cast member peed on another’s toothbrush causing illness, yet he stuck around.

In DC, most recently, Ty dropped Andrew over the edge of the balcony. He also punched a hole in the wall, and said “I will knock you the fuck out” before shoving Emily twice.

MTV named that episode during which Andrew was injured “Cheaters, Beaters and Pavement Eaters.” Ha! Pavement eaters! Injuries are so funny! Do you know what’s even funnier? Maybe something more dramatic–like rape or death! Maybe next season.

“The Real World D.C.” crashes and burns [Washington Post]
“Remember When People Used To Get Kicked Off ‘The Real World’ For Abuse?” [Best Week Ever]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.