MTV has been on a tear lately with reviving and rebooting its most iconic programs from the past, and it sounds like the network is primed to do the same with The Real World. The series, which has since made the under-dramatic name change to Real World in the midst of its long TV run, is set to return to fans after a year and a half of being off the air. But this will likely not be the same Real World that longtime fans are used to, and it may not even air on its original network.
The Real World made reality TV a household term on MTV around 25 years go, but its home may change with this potential reboot. MTV will apparently still be involved in the production of this new version of Real World, but Deadline is reporting the network and the show's co-producer Bunim Murray Productions has plans to shop the rebooted project to streaming platforms. The tactic for MTV to co-produce but not air the series may sound odd, but isn't so unprecedented in a world where Netflix exists. Real World co-creator Jonathan Murray did confirm talks are underway for the reboot, but did not say anything else regarding the other details.
There's a lot of potential in MTV selling a series like The Real World to a streaming service like Netflix. The show thrives on complete strangers being "real," which would only feel more genuine on a platform where censorship takes a backseat, so that expletives and nudity aren't seen as taboo. There are also smaller changes to appreciate from a TV-to-streaming transition, such as constant teases for upcoming episodes not being included if all the episodes are released on the same day. As well as not needing to fill more time to make up for a lack of commercial breaks.
Of course, there are no guarantees MTV would make The Real World any different than it already was just because it would be on a streaming platform. Still, one would imagine at least some of these ideas are being discussed in the retooling. And hopefully everyone is still being polite -- "Could you get the phone?" -- while they start getting real.
A Real World reboot might be challenging, but mainly because there's the question of how one can re-invent a show that's already been on the air for 32 seasons, and has had some successful spinoffs like Road Rules and The Challenge, the latter of which is still airing. The show has taken people of all different backgrounds around the world and back again, so it won't be super easy to shake things up when so much has been done already. MTV may not need to, though, considering the reality series has been such a success thus far. And it's not like changing locations made the Jersey Shore group all that different.
Summer continues to roll on while MTV continues to talk out its potential Real World revival, and there's a lot of great television coming out each and every day that folks should be excited for. Check out what's coming up by visiting and bookmarking our summer premiere guide.