In case you missed the ending of last week’s Real World, let me recap: complete and utter chaos broke out when the cast discovered they’d be heading to Fiji for their STA Travel vacation. Screaming, hugging, crying, humping, drinking, and then fighting ensued. Is this really what the world needs? Do we dare let these people run loose on tranquil Fiji, potentially spreading their seed and threatening the local ecosystems? I think vacation in Bunim/Murray world should mean a dark cell in a subterranean fortress. I guess that wouldn’t be very interesting. But what if we leave a piece of cheese and a bowie knife? Now we’re talking!Sadly, at the outset of this week’s episode, it appeared as though no devious schemes involving close quarters and cutlery would be coming to fruition. Instead, MTV and the roomies had different plans: skinny dipping! Now don’t start scouring this site for salacious screencaps. All this talk about swimming in the buff surfaced before we had even left Philly. Surprisingly enough, Shavonda spearheaded the Pro Skinny Dipping resolution, and as Landon and others packed their bags, she all but stuck a clipboard and signup sheet in everyone’s face, asking if they were “up for skinny dipping?” Yes, nothing says spontaneous fun like a carefully orchestrated frolic in the sea. Normally, when you think of skinny dipping, you think of free-flowing booze, lost inhibitions, and spontaneous antics. Who else fears this Fiji trip will wind up with Shavonda blowing a whistle and yelling “Landon! Clothes – off! NOW! GET IN THE WATER!!! Who’s next? SARAH!!! I don’t have all day people!”
Of course, Shavonda was able to use this whole skinny dipping proposition as a platform to talk about herself. “I’m living life as Shavonda, not Shavonda and Shaun,” she explained. I’d personally like to see her live as Shavonda and Shaun, only because the arguments with herself would be priceless. Okay, well, I guess she was being a little more figurative than that. Shavonda proved that she was ready for independence by… calling up Shaun and asking for his permission to skinny dip? Are you kidding me? Many flags popping up here. 1) Shavonda’s going to do it anyway; so why bother ask for her boyfriend’s input? Oh that’s right. Now she can get mad at him later on when he expresses disappointment. 2) Why does Shaun object to the skinny dipping when his girlfriend already lives in a house with communal showers, infrared cameras, and a built in audience of a few million people?
Luckily, all Shaun/Shavonda drama was kept at a minimum as the producers clearly did not want to waste any valuable airtime that could go to cutaway shots of crabs, waves, and palm trees later on. The next morning, everyone arose early to catch the flight. MJ commented that they were going to be flying longer than they work in a week. Honestly, a commuter flight to Pittsburgh would last longer than their work week.
The kids all piled into an airport shuttle that looked eerily like their Philadelphia Soul transport. Could it be that the company was eagerly sending the roommates out of the country – a corporate gesture on par with brushing dirt under the carpet? Probably not, but feel free to spread that rumor. With all the burgeoning excitement in the vehicle, Willie decided to leave his mark on the episode by pulling out some random passive aggression on Karamo. “This is the first road trip Karamo’s been on time for! Ha ha ha,” joked Willie. At this point Melanie laughed to herself: “Using up all your PA before getting to Fiji? Amateur…”
Eventually everyone made their way to the airport, and based on the footage of the plane taking off, it appears as though Philly has suddenly become mountainous and littered with palm trees. Question: do scabies count as a carry on? Anyway, upon arrival at the beautiful island destination, Shavonda informed us that “everyone says ‘Boola!’” which means “hello!” Actually, it probably means “Go away, heathen!” but whatever.
The buddies all motored in to their island getaway on a little boat which was promptly attacked by a tribe of natives. Seriously. Well, sort of seriously. Apparently Bunim/Murray had borrowed some of Survivor’s leftover native actors to scare/entertain the white folk. Was I the only one who became intensely excited to see a tribesman charging Landon with a spear? Alas, this Disney version of a siege quickly devolved into laughter and “Boola!”s as the once proud warriors scuttled to help the kids find their accommodations.
Ah, the unbridled beauty of Fiji. If there ever was a time to embrace nature, this would be it. “The sunset is going to be so pretty here,” said a wistful Willy. Hey, you’re on the Real World. Stop appreciating your surroundings! “We’re going to the bar!” Shavonda responded, quickly putting an end to Willie’s silly ramblings. That’s more like it!
That night, after the sun had gone down, Sarah suddenly remembered that she had the carefully manufactured image of a slut to fulfill. You see, she came into the season announcing how sexual she was, but as far as we can tell, her most exciting Saturday night so far was when she cleaned the house and fought with Landon. Rule of thumb with Real World cast members: they are always exactly the opposite of what they portend to be. Trishelle: I’m such a sweet girl! (slut). Sarah: I’m such a slut! (Where’s my vibrator?).
And so this brings us to the mighty escapades of Sarah in Fiji as she desperately tried to be the slut she always dreamt she could be. Turns out three British teenagers were also hanging around the resort, most likely having one of those homoerotic coming of age stories that European cinema loves so much. Horny Sarah decided to prey on British guy #1 – a.k.a. Freddie. Why him? He had good teeth for a British guy, said Sarah. And honestly, isn’t that all you can ask for? We never got a good view of Freddie’s orthodontically approved mouth, but we’ll just assume “good for a British guy” meant about four or five straight, un-eroded teeth.
Sarah immediately got to work with Freddie, giving him longing stares and thrusting her surgically enhanced heaving bosom his way. It was all so romantic, what with the cameras and sound people right there, not to mention the frequent yells of “Boola!” in the background. Man, these people really like to say hello. Eventually, Sarah seduced Freddie into her island hut, but this international affair was short lived as the two emerged shortly after. Her crooked tube top and the unopened condom on the floor suggested that Freddie’s erection quickly deflated upon viewing Sarah’s silicon orbs of desire.
How does that old saying go? If at first you fail, try try again? Well, time for the second “try” of that expression. To Sarah’s credit, she was very forthright about her mission. Bitch just wants to get laid. Can’t fault her for that. Nevertheless, Sarah quickly pounced on Freddie’ friend, literally only known as “British guy #2.” This young bloke seemed up for the challenge, and when Sarah trapped him in her hut of vaginal bliss, we thought our resident nymph had finally found Mr. Right.
Enter Shavonda, the reigning cockblock of the season. In typical fashion, Shavonda knocked gently on the hut door, claiming she needed to get something. Dammit, girl! Sarah’s been looking for some action all season. Wait ten minutes! Oh, but I forgot. Shavonda’s living as Shavonda, not Shavonda and Sarah. She needs those breath mints!
Well, Shavonda entered and in a flurry of activity, British Guy #2 sprinted out of Sarah’s sexual prison faster than Britney Spears at a corndog festival. Exactly what is Sarah doing in there? Luring them with the promise of Mel’s scabies?
Continuing her work as the Fijian Queen of the cockblock, Shavonda’s next target was none other than drunken moppet Landon. The two convened for a dependably boring stroll along the beach where they marveled in the wonder of astronomy: “The moon is lit from below!” exclaimed Landon. Yes, it’s almost like he was at a different “latitude” or in a separate, how do you say, “hemisphere”! Amazing! Lunar bombshells aside, the two plopped their asses down in the sand and had a heart to heart where Landon slurred his way through some uninspired observations about who knows what. How’s that five beer max going? Way to kick the habit! Later, Landon pulled a kitchen knife out of his back pocket and threatened to shiv a palm tree.
Elsewhere, Grendel’s Mom â€”Â I mean, Sarah â€”Â found prey in Brit #3. It’s always a bad sign when your have to enumerate your booty calls. The two snuggled on the beach and later made out, but once again, Sarah announced that they did not have sex. Somewhere in the distance, I could hear someone singing “‘Cause it’s one, two, three strikes you’re out at the old baaalll gaaaame!”
The next morning, Melanie was oh so kind to tell Sarah that all the British guys think she’s a slut. We didn’t get to actually see this exchange, but the footage of Sarah shuffling away dejectedly let us know that Mel had just leveled her with her PA cannon. “I’m just looking out for Sarah,” Mel explained to Landon, as she watched her latest victim skulk off with Willie for the inevitable bitch session. Sure enough, that’s exactly what they did as they tanned by the waves. Willie thought they were having a heart to heart, but little did he know that Sarah was merely offering up her body to Spongebob, lest he emerge from the deep.
That night, the clan participated in a local ritual involving dancing and singing and other stuff that would give Jeff Probst a boner. Landon gabbed about how wonderful it was, describing the natives as bestowing them with “weird signs of affection.” Or “traditional customs” as they might call it. Landon then asked where the Fijian McDonalds was because he was a bit turned off by the “wacky not-Big Macs.”
After the evening’s activities, Mel cozied up with British guys 1, 2, and 3, much to Sarah’s displeasure. This led to an emergency bitchfest back at the hut where Sarah, Shavonda, and Landon let loose on why Earth would be better without Melanie. Luckily, some production assistant probably fetched Melanie with the line “You forgot your, uh, thing in your hut,” because after just a few minutes of the bashing, Melanie popped in the door with her heavily promoted line, “So, were ya talkin’ ’bout me?” Actually, yes. Sarah and Mel had a useless heart to heart which was laced with little pearls of passive aggression. It seemed like no matter what Sarah said, Melanie’s response was “Oh, I’m SO sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you… But you did hook up with three guys last night, just saying.”
Meanwhile, in the straight guy’s hut, Shavonda and Landon smooched under the covers while MJ aired out his omnipresent armpit. In case you actually thought Shavonda was going to give up her cockblocking ways, you’d be wrong. After a decent amount of liplocking, she suddenly sprung from the bed and returned to her Maison de Celibacy (aka – the hut she shared with Sarah). Blast! Foiled again!
The next morning, the roomies upgraded from their rustic accommodations to a more swanky resort elsewhere in Fiji. While Karamo happily embraced his giant bed, Melanie and Sarah attempted to reconcile once again. There was a lot of “I feel…” and “I feel like you feel…” and “I didn’t know you felt that way” and “Do you ever feel…” Finally, Mel made the most logical point of all: let’s not waste our vacation with this. It was as if a light bulb had gone off and both sprung from their chairs and ambled into the hotel. Mel looked like she was about to give Sarah a hug, but the editors cut away, lest we think everything was resolved.
Somehow, I think we’ll be in for more bickering. After all, this is The Real World. People don’t go on vacation to have fun. Bring on Royal Rumble 2005!