Did you know, The Challenge has an official podcast and it’s still making episodes? Recently, hosts Tori and Aneesa sat down with Kim Webster , a field producer for the show, and talked about making The Challenge. For the record, Kim was worked with the show since Vendettas and helped with all seasons of All Stars. She has over a decade of experience producing reality TV (as well as working as an actress on The West Wing).
On the show, Tori asked Kim if it was different working with the All Stars cast than it was working with the main series cast. Kim responded with a juicy response that could “get her in trouble.”
She said “I think that the nostalgia with the All Stars cast, and them really just going there to have a good time, really shows through. Yes, they want to compete (we saw that on All Stars 2 and maybe you’ll see that on All Stars 3) … but I feel like some of the younger people that are coming in now are doing stuff for the camera. And to me it wreaks of… I hate when people aren’t authentic. It’s just a pet peeve of mine. And as a fan and a viewer of the show, I feel like I can see that, and it’s disappointing, and it just kinda takes away from the Challenge and what I feel in love with the show for. So, I’m probably gonna in trouble for that.”
As a fellow fan and viewer of the show, I feel it too. But I also know this isn’t exactly new. Remember when Tina punched Beth on The Duel? Tina accused Beth of putting on a show for camera time. I’m not accusing Beth here, but this proves people have had similar concerns to Kim’s for decades.
While it may have always been an issue, it’s much more visible on recent seasons because there are so many newbies. Then, they get replaced after the season is over, meaning we’re in a perpetual cycle of inauthentic rookies.
Of course, the question compared the main series to All Stars. They are very different environments, and the future of All Stars is unknown. People might not be fighting for camera time there because they feel like the show might not continue for a long time. Meanwhile, The Challenge has been on for 25 years, so it’s safe to assume it’ll keep going.
That said, when a producer who worked on Celebrity Rehab With Dr. Drew is concerned about the integrity of the show, I share the concern.