10 Ways The Challenge has Changed Over the Past 10 Years

10 years ago The Inferno 2 was airing on MTV. It was a season that went down in history as one of the craziest, most dramatic, and most memorable Challenges. It was also very different from The Challenge as we know it today. Here’s a look at some of the biggest differences:

bad_2687-14225553351. TJ Who? I don’t know what’s harder to believe, The Challenge existed without TJ or that TJ has been hosting The Challenge for almost 10 years. The Inferno 2 was hosted by Dave Mirra. The following Challenge. The Gauntlet 2, was filmed in summer of 2005 and hosted by TJ Lavin. He has hosted ever Challenge since.

2. More Challenge, Half as Long. The Challenge used to be half an hour. This meant we saw more missions, the season lasted a few weeks longer (16 weeks compared to 10-12), but the storylines weren’t as developed. Now, we get more content because episodes are one hour, but fewer missions.

3. The Odds Are In Your Favor. Making it to the final was much easier. The Inferno 2 only had 8 elimination for a 20 person cast. On Battle of the Exes 2, only 6 people out of 26 made it to the final.

4. Product Placement Everywhere! Rewatch an older season like The Duel. There’s tons of product placement. Clues were received on a T-Mobile Sidekick 2, winning and elimination got you an X-box, and winning a daily Challenge could get you a NHL prize package. Now there’s just money and some free Under Armor gear.

5. Real World vs. Road Rules. 10 years ago there was no such thing as Are You the One?, Fresh Meat, or the Spring Break Challenge. The cast only had Real World and Road Rules. Now people wonder what Road Rules was.


6. T-Shirts Everywhere. If you saw the older seasons, people wore custom t-shirts all the time. Rachel & Veronica owned a product line called College Dropout, You’d see shirts that read “Where’s Rachel?” “LESBIAN” or “Thousandaire.”

7. Finals Were a Breeze. Compared to the finals of today. On The Gauntlet, the cast was shocked that they had to run 3 miles. Now finals are overnight, are 10+ miles, and require contestants to climb sketchy mountains.

8.  The Cast Ran Wild. Production now has a tight grip on the day-to-day activities of cast members. 10 years ago people went out to eat, brought digital camera, and listened to music. Nowadays people feel privileged to read a Bible.

9. Two Teams, Not Teams of Two. Fresh Meat 1 was the first season that was not divided into two teams. Now, we almost always see teams of two and haven’t had a large team Challenge in about 5 years.

10. The People! Of course people are going to change over the years, but back in the day Veronica, Coral, Mike, and Theo ran the show. The only people we’d see that have done The Challenge for 10 years are Aneesa and CT. Having the cast change over time is natural, but there were a lot of great cast members we haven’t seen in ages.


8 thoughts on “10 Ways The Challenge has Changed Over the Past 10 Years

  1. So much effort was made into challenges, but lately it seems like they got so freaking lazy. I mean when was the last good intro we had and what about the logos?

    • I thought the ruins and cutthroat were the last great intros and the first rivals intro was one of my favorites. As soon as the challenges went to hd and they stopped casting old school competitors they just stopped carrying. Also the fact that the challenges are renewed one at a time they are probably trying to save as much money as possible.

  2. The challenge has become way less fun.. its almost like MTV is trying to make it a sport. You dont see any top ten plays coming out of the show. People that watch the show, and have watched the show for years, want to see the cast get trashed, shit talked each other and stab each other in the back. Bring back some of the old elimination style and team challenges and maybe it can be saved.

    • No thanks. I don’t need to see them play musical chairs in the pool or dress up chickens transferring bird food in their mouth while getting sprayed by a hose. There’s got to be some skill involved instead of the children’s birthday party games they had at the beginning.

  3. They should try to bring back the inferno 1 elimination challenges I think endurance ones that are more mentally based would show who really wants it more. I also think the influence of more mind based challenges with the physical challenges would be a good move. As a female, I hate how degrading they are to the women and the increased infusion of mental skills in challenges would put both genders on a balanced level. I also agree with the old timers, in their prime, and rookies/sophomores idea with a larger cast. I actually enjoy the actual ayto show, but I think their selection for the cast members to cast could be better. I think that a ruins style set up for bloodlines would be pretty awesome. I loved the structure of the ruins and I think it opened itself to a lot of drama.

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