The Challenge: Seasons Synopsis

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The Challenge: Seasons Synopsis
As part of my 'Challenge Encyclopedia' I've been working on, I decided to grade each of the seasons with a brief overview.  Here are the first 2.  I'll add another every few days.  Feedback or suggestions welcome.   Road Rules: All Stars       The unofficial first challenge, All Stars had five former Real Worlders completing a series of missions, rather than competing against each other.  It was fun to see the cast outside of their comfy confines, but there was a serious lack of drama or excitement.  While on a brief pit stop in CA however, the gang encounters the infamous Beth, who makes a rather obvious & hilarious play for Sean.  Still, it’s a short season that is pleasant, but a bit on the safe side.  High Point-The spooky shenanigans at a haunted mental hospital during the first mission provide some fun hijinks.  Low Point-Seeing the guys serve the unwitting ladies insect soup is pretty cruel & unnecessary, although quite funny. Historical Moment-Sean & Rachel began their love story this season.  It’s rather sweet & touching to see a relationship build from innocent flirting to a full-fledged marriage & family that is still going strong after all these years.     C+
Real World/Road Rules Challenge Things heat up with team vs. team competitions with 6 members of Real World & 6 from Road Rules facing off.  While most of the missions are a bit goofy, it’s pleasant to see the cast having so much fun. Challenge Villainess Beth makes her debut as a competitor.  High Point-There aren’t many standout moments from this season other than Montana & Beth’s bickering & the Jason/Janet hookup.  Low Point-Aside from Montana & Beth, the season is devoid of any real pot-stirrers or troublemakersThe majority of the players are so good-natured & nice that it’s hard to root against anyone.  Historical Moment-The first ever challenge rivalry is born between Beth & Montana when the Boston alum calls out Beth for not participating in a mission due to an ankle injury.  The feud will carry over through the years to Gauntlet 2.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       B-                                                                                                   
Those seasons are the only ones I haven't seen. Gotta watch them. Gonna watch this thread.
Every single challenge has been entertaining in one way or another.  It's cool to go back & watch from the beginning & see how much they've changed.
Challenge 2000 The 6 on 6 format continues with the cast traveling across the country in an RV, Road Rules-style.  The series gets a definite shot in the arm with the addition of some hardcore, hungry players such as Yes, Holly & David.  Piggy & Los’ mutual dislike of each other permeates throughout the season & culminates in an off-camera altercation that had Piggy attacking Los.  High Point-This season had more than it’s share.  The Stir Crazy mission in an old insane asylum, Amaya clotheslining Veronica in a football game, the Yes/Dan kiss on the RV to name a few.   Low Point-None really jump to mind, but the Dan/Holly showmance that producers manufactured, does tend to get a bit sappy & overplayed.  Since both are so damn likeable though, it’s still a pleasure to watch. Historical Moment-The challenge debut of Queen Bee Veronica, who will go on to make herself known as one of the games most notorious players due to her master manipulation, seduction skills & delicious villainy.                                                                                                                                                                                                              B                                                                         
I'm enjoying these, keep it up! I haven't seen any of the challenges before Battle of the Seasons 1 so I really need to check those out. It's crazy to know that there weren't eliminations before. 
Thanks, man.   The older challenges don't have the intensity of the newer shows, but they are still fun to watch & it's a blast to see how some of the legendary challengers got their start.
This is a cool idea and can't wait until you get to seasons I've watched haha.
Thanks, man.   The older challenges don't have the intensity of the newer shows, but they are still fun to watch & it's a blast to see how some of the legendary challengers got their start.
Yeah..that's one thing that's missing from the show now..fun. I miss that. Show is way too serious now. But I keep doing it! looking forward to your next entry.
Seriously. I LOVE drama, but it's also fun watching people enjoy themselves &  form friendships & memories.  That is truly lacking from today's challenges. Appreciate the feedback, DA.
Seriously. I LOVE drama, but it's also fun watching people enjoy themselves &  form friendships & memories.  That is truly lacking from today's challenges. Appreciate the feedback, DA.
I think it's there, though not as much, but they almost never feel the need to edit it in and rather focus on drama and all that good stuff.
True.  Focus is all on competition (which I love), fights (very entertaining) & hookups (I don't give a shit about it).  
I just want to say how much I am enjoying these. Keep them coming please! Smile
Thanks!  :)    
Extreme Challenge The series heats up taking the players overseas for the first time.  More challenge legends are introduced as Emily, Julie, Syrus & Susie enter the game.  This season ratchets up the drama with meatheads (Laterrian), nice girls (Rebecca, Michelle), hotheads (James, Ayanna) & braniacs (Christian, Kameelah).  The players are now taking the game more seriously & the missions are definitely living up to this challenge’s name.  This was the first & only appearance of Michelle on a challenge before her death a year later.  High Point-We get our first taste of Emily’s thirst for winning & she lives up to her reputation as one of the game’s all-time Alpha females.  Her rivalry with Julie definitely amps up the season.  It’s also quite a treat to see Susie make her debut rather meekly  & scared, which is a  far cry from her later challenge persona as ruthless & hell-bent on winning at any cost.  Low Point-After a heated exchange with Christian, Ayanna physically lashes out at him & is subsequently sent home, paving the way for Susie to come aboard.  Historical Moment-Real World gets their first win.  This was the only season without an official host, but had most missions explained via audio from various alumni providing clues.  The first series blowout, as RW won 10 of the missions over RR.                                                                                                                                               B+                           
Seriously. I LOVE drama, but it's also fun watching people enjoy themselves &  form friendships & memories.  That is truly lacking from today's challenges. Appreciate the feedback, DA.
Completely agree with this! I miss seeing the cast have fun together. There was always drama but the cast still treated their experience like a vacation instead of a prison back in the golden era. I was watching The Gauntlet 2 premiere where they celebrated Mark's birthday and that party looked awesome lol you don't see the cast have that much fun anymore. There's more footage of them being miserable now. 
Extreme Challenge was my first season I watched! It was really good in my eyes. I remember Road Rules losing so bad that season it was rediculous. I actually started feeling bad for them at one poing lol.
Battle of the Seasons Let the games officially begin.  This season was the turning point for The Challenge & introduced blatant alliances, scheming & backstabbery along with Jisela, Timmy & Theo V.  The Road Rules inner circle decision to send home Yes & Veronica sets in motion the ousting of Chadwick & Piggy & created tons of drama on the squad.  Belou flips out on Holly & Chadwick in a rather infamous rant.  The Real World team plays nice for the most part, until they conspire to get rid of Stephen & unfortunately his partner Lindsey is collateral damage. A Real World win with Sean & Elka as the Ultimate Team caps off a near-perfect season.  High Point-Hurricane Juliette killed the power & shut down production allowing for both teams to come together in the legendary toga party, culminating in The Miz’s lap dance for best costume winner Sharon. Low Point-Miami firecracker Flora is inexplicably silent & docile for much of the season & doesn’t provide any of the excitement that one had expected from her.  Historical Moment-Challenge stars Mike & Coral make their debut, as does the infamous inner circle, which brings the element of voting off players into the game.                                                                                                        A
Ugh, I so want to rewatch AS but Rachel and Sean aggravate me to no end. Which is weird because Sean is cool outside of the show to me.
I love Sean.  Rachel, I could take her or leave her, but Sean has always been one of my favorite guys from the show.        
Battle of the Sexes Arguably the best chapter in Challenge history, Sexes had a tropical locale, cool missions & a boatload of melodrama.  Puck, Rachel, Aneesa, Ruthie & many others jump into the challenge waters for the first time, which soon turn blood red.  The Veronica/Emily vendetta, the Melissa/Julie conflict, the Puck/Ellen dust-ups… fights & hookups abound in Jamaica.  Meanwhile, future BFFs Veronica & Rachel barely acknowledge each other in the game.  The guys play nice, while the ladies tend to be a bit more petty in their vote-off methods.  High Point-Emily finally gets her wish & sends Veronica packing, but V is saved from elimination by Jamie’s ion lifesaver.  Unfortunately, a technicality prevents the ion being used on Veronica & she is forced to leave the game. The look on Emily’s face though is priceless, as her foe is briefly saved from elimination.  Low Point-After a season of craftiness & hard work, Emily quits the game one mission before the finals when her boyfriend James is voted off.  The series loses its first star player as Em drifts off into challenge lore, never to return to the show again.  Historical Moment-An entire episode is dedicated to Puck’s wedding to girlfriend Betty & shows his tender side.  Until a few episodes later when he flips out, brandishes a machete & leaves the game (& the series) like a ghost in the night.  Tonya makes her debut in a rather prim, proper way & even refuses to join in on the vagina chant the girls come up with.  This is in stark contrast to her later behavior of toplessness, extreme drinking & catfighting.                                                                          A                                                                                                                            
The review of Battle of the Seasons makes me really want to watch it right now.
The review of Battle of the Seasons makes me really want to watch it right now.
You should. One of the best challenges of all time. And for Battle of the Seasons..That is like one of my all time favorite challenges. It had it all...drama, competition, gameplay, fun everything this show should be about. It was an amazing love letter to this franchise and it's a shame that we'll probably never get a challenge like that again.
BOTS1 was amazing. Top 5 IMO 1) Coral vs. Stephen 2) Everyone vs. Chadwick & Holly B. 3) The friendship between Mike and Coral 4) Kelley & Danny R. surprising everyone
This thread just made me want to watch the first four seasons. I'm really enjoying these, keep it up. I can't wait to see the reviews for both Infernos. 
sadly though only extreme through Exes 2 are torrented the rest are youtube-able. Yeah, I went there
This thread just made me want to watch the first four seasons. I'm really enjoying these, keep it up. I can't wait to see the reviews for both Infernos. 
I The Inferno 1 is the best of that trilogy.
Glad you guys are enjoying these.  
Low Point-After a season of craftiness & hard work, Emily quits the game one mission before the finals when her boyfriend James is voted off.                                                                                                                                                                                           
She quit when there was 6 people left on each team, during elimination time. With that, there were 2 missions left before the final (Razors Edge-scooter mission and Maximum Velocity-zipline bungee catch mission)!
Noted. She totally shoulda quit then.  Smile
These are a fun read! I look forward to the rest!

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