The Challenge

Five Challenge That Should Have Never Happened

Every so often, we see a Challenge whose format is perfect and works really well. More often, we see seasons with formats that don’t work, and probably should have been avoided by production. These are those Challenges. I’m not saying production shouldn’t have filmed a Challenge, but perhaps they should have reconsidered the format.

1. The Gauntlet 3


The Gauntlet 3 is a very popular season, but production clearly couldn’t get enough true veterans to fill the Veteran team. There was such a heavy reliance on Fresh Meat to fill that team, and they automatically banded together to get rid of some of the true veterans. Plus, the rookie team underwhelmed despite the fact that they could have found some stronger rookies to compete.

2. The Island


We have Survivor for this shit. No Challenge fans want to see the cast members endure the elements. Beyond this flawed premise, the fact that there was so few opportunities to compete in challenges made this season a snoozefest for fans of competition.

3. Rivals 2


It’s no big secret at this point that this season was originally going to be a Duel-esque format before a last minute change. However, this resulted in pairing with some really fake rivalries. The cast was solid, but production would have been better off sticking with a solo-style competition.

4. Battle of the Bloodlines


After Battle of the Exes 2, fans of the Challenge were eager for a non-pair Challenge and were annoyed by the flock of new Are You the One? kids appearing on the show. So, we got a pair-based season and a bunch of new Challengers to replace the Real Worlders on the show. Perhaps this format could have worked at one point in time, but we got it at the wrong point in time.

5. Rivals 3


Much like Rivals 2, many of the pairing on this season were forced. While some were real, the format still resulted in the two strongest competitors being paired together. Add in the huge twist at the end of the season, but the twist feels flawed when co-ed rivals are competing against each other on a series that tries so hard to created an equitable playing field for men and women.


  1. The Island should’ve been something pitting old school (pre fresh meat) vs new school (after fresh meat) to celebrate 10 years of Challenges.
    Rivals 2 should’ve been BattleGrounds 2 or Gauntlet 4, just something pitting veterans against this “rookie revolution.
    Bloodlines should’ve been Fresh Meat and have the Alumni vs either family members or AYTO people.

    1. Yeah the ruins was used just to make the champions win. Who in the right mind would put both Casey and shauvon on the same team and think that it’s not rigged.

  2. I disagree with Rivals 2. It was the last good season and though the rivalries weren’t solid (except CT/Wes, Knight/Preston and maybe Jemmye/Camila) they were hilarious and the challenges and eliminations were great. Also drama was amazing.

      1. xxx games, rampage and the blindfold/taser challenges? Last Chance/Hall Brawl is uncontested as the best elimination challenge no matter the season. Breakthrough was boring tbh. Kinda predictable after the first level. The only interesting thing about it was Zach’s amazing throw

  3. I think the WORST season so far is Battle of the Seasons, and maybe the Exes seasons. I liked The Island and The Gauntlet III.
    I do hope to see another Cutthroat or The Ruins.

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