The first season of Homecoming from the real world – which aired this calendar year, if you can believe it – it was a sometimes frustrating but ultimately valuable watch. It was our original seven strangers, thirty years later, reflecting on what they had done and who they had become. It was a comfort to know that while the original cast from New York may not be seen as often as they would like, they have a bond and will back each other forever. It was an update and survivor support group, and even when it upset me, even at its most Beckiest moment, I was glad it was happening.
Rather, season 2 feels like something from the He saw franchise.
The seven (and later nine) housemates of The real world: Los Angeles it showed that a little knowledge was a dangerous thing. They knew the show would make them famous, but they didn’t seem to know it wouldn’t make them rich. They knew the secret to screen time was conflict, but they didn’t stop to think how much it would drive them away from each other in the long run. They knew how to play characters, but they didn’t stop to think about how producers and editors who were desperate to turn a television experiment into a franchise could cut and ruin their words and actions. So what we see in Homecoming from the real world: Los Angeles it’s a house full of people primarily processing the trauma of being young in front of the camera, having their characters frozen in amber from a time when their frontal lobes were still forming, and having the opportunity to process it cut between they. Don’t let the Venetian sun fool you – this shit is dark.
“Don’t let the Venetian sun fool you: this shit is dark.”
In Episode 4, we pick up the morning after a rough night at the house, in which the housemates switched between wanting to do an intervention for David and trying to incite him into a gin-fueled argument. Beth S says “I don’t think David remembers anything from last night, which is good,” which isn’t SUPER he’s not, and then “I just want to support David and lift him up,” which hey, no, she SUPER doesn’t. . I really wonder what this whole experience did for Beth, quite possibly the first recipient of Bad Guy Edit, the first person to prove that one can be a villain without being scared of anyone. I wonder if there is a difference between the Beth in real life and the Beth on television, if it really is her nature to stir the pot or if it is something she consciously ignites, and if she herself knows the answer. These are the things I would like to get into on this show.
Instead, we are going to live a luxurious sailing experience! Everyone in the house seems excited about it, except for Tami, who wonders about the number of rooms, surely since many reality producers have already fooled her with some wacky luxury experiences. Whatever awaits Jon; He says he lives from “pay to pay”, which I think, because the “small town youth mentor” position is not known to be lucrative, and also all these people have to have signed their contracts for the second season before anyone in season one learned The real world it would give the maximum fame and the minimum compensation, surely the worst possible combination.
Luckily for everyone, the yacht looks pretty decent. A fruit to spread! A long dining table! A private chef making a kind of Salt Bae with some salmon fillets! More expensive and less nutritious than being locked up with a mental health professional, but still!
Irene reveals that she had been married briefly once before their wedding in front of the camera, and she doesn’t know why she didn’t come out and say it when they were filming, and I think it could have been that she was in front of the camera for about five minutes. total. She and Tim, whose Jason Priestimony I had completely forgotten about, have since divorced, she remarried and re-divorced, and is now happily married to a boy named Phil. On the agenda for the luxury yacht sailing experience is a vow renewal, which she asks Jon to officiate. Jon says yes, Beth S sees an opportunity for drama and screen time and does it: it turns out that she asked him to officiate her wedding, but he refused, so now she says, “Did Irene even invite him to? any of his multiple weddings?
In an interview, Tami says that “Irene lied to get on the show and said she was already married,” which is not what Irene said at all, but accuracy is less important than screen time. This is all very disgusting, yacht or not yacht.
Through much of this, David is vaping. And as with all vaporizers, it is impossible to know exactly what is being swallowed and blown around the room. Concerned that it is marijuana and not wanting to jeopardize her decades of recovery from what she later says was a marijuana addiction, Beth A steers away from the table. Beth S asks David to stop, which is perfectly reasonable, since people are eating, and he immediately responds, “My daughter told me to watch out for your butt, and my daughter was right,” so that apparently the general theme of Irene’s vow renewal will be “seething resentment.” David also keeps calling Beth “Karen,” which is maybe something that wasn’t quite heard when they were filming this.
Tami takes the Beths aside and says “I smoke, and nobody tells me not to, so are you messing with David?” This misses the point, because when she smokes, she’s obviously smoking a cigarette, and she’s not blowing it directly at people either. She tells Beth S, “I wonder why David has a problem with you specifically, because it’s always just him and you,” which is only true when it’s not David and Glen or David and Tami herself. He then walks over to David to go batting for the Beths. “I think Beth S wouldn’t come for you,” he says. David responds: “She’s coming for me, she waited for the cameras before saying something.” Ultimately, David wants to be left alone, which is understandable and, with a Tami right there trying to orchestrate moments and story lines, not even remotely possible. As she literally chases him around the boat, he asks, “Is it a boring night and you want some drama? Why are they stirring the pot? He tells the camera, “My philosophy is: don’t start with none, there won’t be any,” and since I’ve done it with a lot of these people, I wonder if he doesn’t even think he’s telling the truth.
The next morning brings an INCOMING MESSAGE, but for once this seems a bit nice: these are images of Irene’s on-camera wedding. From today’s perspective, you really see how hard the producers tried to push the “Jon is in love with Irene” story, which never felt real. Jon seems to be calm today; he says his sheepish dog look on Irene’s blessed day was just that he was dizzy because Beth S can’t drive.
Turns out Beth S has been married for 13 years and I suppose she has kids, very good for her. Once again, she complains that Jon didn’t show up for their wedding and Jon tells the camera that he couldn’t afford to make the trip. Jon is giving us real honesty this entire season, and I love him for that. But Beth S can’t drop the subject: “Why judge me when I’m getting married, when I’m still married and I’ve only been married once?” Oh, Beth, he’s not judging you. But I am! I really am. “I don’t want to ruin Irene’s special day,” says Beth S, with the joyless smile we’ve come to moan out loud about. Anyway, Irene and Phil renew their vows, reading them on an iPad, and I wish them much happiness, but it looks a lot like being at a stranger’s wedding, and it’s a cash bar, and the only currency the bar accepts. it is your limited time. on this earth.
Glen reveals that he, too, has been married and divorced ever since, and that he was on his way to marry a second time, but she died. He’s wary of details, which, of course, he has a right to be. But obviously he’s still bummed about the whole thing, and I hope he’s okay because he seems like a nice guy, and since I do with all these people, I wonder if his participation in this meeting was the healthiest option.
But I don’t have much time to think about it, because we immediately go back to David vs. Beth S. Tami is trying to mediate and also produce this show. She asks him, “Can you stop calling her Karen?” And David replies, “That’s my golden line,” and maybe now we know why she never appeared as a comedian. But he says he has long distrusted her, not just because of the original season, but also because of a bad experience in 2003. Real world / road rules challenge: battle of the sexes in which Beth S inserted herself into a conflict between David and Puck and sided with Puck, which as we all know is inexcusable. (Yes, there is footage. Yes, I checked, and no, this season of Real world challenge / rules of the road it’s not on Paramount +. They only have seasons 11 to 34. Dear God, life is long).
Tami ends the episode by telling David, “When you go down the stairs, collect all those eggshells that people walk on.” We can agree that you have a note in your Notes app that is full of these, right?
So that’s all. This week the yacht never left the marina, and I could have left at any time, but I still felt shipwrecked on a desert island with these people. I don’t know what role Eric Nies will play this season, or when he will appear, but I know his energy is desperately needed. For me.
Dave Holmes is general editor of Esquire.com, host of the Earwolf podcast Homophilia, and his memories A party of one it is already in stores. He also houses the Real World Podcast Truu Stowray, available wherever you get your podcasts.