Times have been tough for The Real World & The Challenge. Ratings are low, twists run rampant, and drama has been a bigger focus than ever. Despite the fact that The Challenge score its lowest ratings in years (if not ever), it has been renewed for a 27th season.
After 30 seasons, the future of The Real World is more questionable than ever. When the 29th season introduced the show’s first twist ever, ratings saw a serious increase over the previous season. It seemed natural that the 30th season would also feature a twist, but despite the fact that the Skeletons twist produced ample drama ratings were about on par with season 28 of The Real World.
Production couldn’t have asked for a better cast than the individuals on the 30th season. The fought, cried, hooked up, and opened up about their past. Despite the fact that this season featured everything a Real World fan could want, there were not a lot of new viewers. With little security in viewership, production is likely questioning if The Real World still has a home on MTV.
No announcement has made confirming or denying the renewal of The Real World. While the next season of The Challenge is confirmed, it’s likely because this season will air prior to the next Real World season. This gives production and MTV time to decide whether or not they should invest in the next Real World season. On production’s end, the answer is clear. Jonathan Murray has stated that he will continue to make The Real World until MTV won’t let him. He even has other twists in mind, so it’s likely that future seasons will continue to have twists.
This leaves the ball in MTV’s court. While it’s clear that The Real World’s ratings are low, all shows on the network have experienced a decline. Even shows that Teen Mom that could once pull in millions of viewers can barely crack a million viewers for new episodes. The decline in overall viewership may be an indicator that MTV will need to shift directions. The introduction of multiple scripted series over the past years is a sign that MTV is trying to appeal to a new audience. With new viewers and new content on MTV, The Real World struggles to find new viewers.
The Real World has many fans who have been watching for year, even decades. As they age, they’re no long part of MTV’s targeted demographic and that makes gaining new viewers more crucial than ever. With the right resources and initiatives, The Real World can get these viewers. However, the recent ratings are putting the future of one of MTV’s most recognizable shows in jeopardy.