The Challenge

Throwback: Did Steven Deserve to Receive the Boot on Battle of the Sexes 2

Production can be really fickle on these shows, and for this throwback we’re going to check one of the older controversies on Challenge history.

Steven-cardOne 2004’s Battle of the Sexes 2, the guys lost one of their strongest cast members just a few missions from the final. During the Cast a Spell mission the teams had to pick a 7-letter word, each player representing a letter, and then rearrange the letters in that word to make as many different words a possible. The three members of the inner circle were left to decide what their word would be while the other players were required to remain quiet.

As a member of the inner circle, Shane was able to speak. Steven was required not to talk. However, Steven decided to play around during his required silence and pretend to have conversations. He never spoke and technically didn’t break any rules.

Once the rest of the cast was allowed to speak, Shane confronted Steven stating that Steven’s actions were distracting and could have cost the team the game. In his anger, Shane was using hand gestures and putting his hand in Steven’s face. Steven then pushed Shane’s hand out of his face and smacked Shane’s face in the process. This action resulted in Shane’s sunglasses falling off of his face.

Shane-cardDue to their zero-tolerence, Steven was sent packing. In a world where Nia can get away with slugging Averey behind the head, this seems like a drastic response. In 2004, it still seemed like an irrational response. In fact, Shane told production that he didn’t want Steven to be sent home. This was one of the rare times where the viewers would get to see production.

At the time, many fans viewed this as a hypocritical response. On Shane’s season of Road Rules he slapped Darrell across the face (jokingly), but this visibly upset Darrell. Production allowed Shane to stay. On The Real World Las Vegas, Brynn threw a fork at Steven. In this scenario Steven as allowed to determine Brynn’s fate.

As we’ve seen in the past, and as we continue to see, the rules are different on The Challenge. People can get away with far less on The Challenge than they can on The Real World or Road Rules.

While this happened over a decade ago, many fans of The Challenge feel this was a big injustice. Steven has never returned to The Challenge, and while he seems more willing now he often said that this incident prevented him from returning.

What do you this? Was Steven’s departure deserved?


  1. Even if he was allowed to stay he would of been voted out eventually by the theo, mark, Eric, dan alliance. It’s still funny to this day that they still won with one less letter.

  2. I actually just watched Shane’s RR season a week or so ago, and comments on the video ran along these lines. Why was what he did to Darrell okay, but what he did to Steven a problem? They certainly do have inconsistent rules. Side note, I also recently saw the episode where Gladys was sent home in her RR season, despite a pretty solid attempt by the team to get her back, and there they said she’d signed a contract regarding the zero tolerance policy. Maybe from year to year the contract is different?

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