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Series / The Surreal Life

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The Surreal Life (2003-2006) is a reality television series that sets a select group of past-their-prime celebrities and records them as they live together in a mansion in the Hollywood Hills for two weeks. Similar to shows such as The Real World and Road Rules, the cameras not only record the castmates' participation in group activities assigned to them, but also their interpersonal relationships and conflicts. The main premise of the series is the interaction of previously known individuals from separate origins of entertainment whom are brought together into one cast. There have been a total of six seasons.

A reboot has been announced which will feature Stormy Daniels, Dennis Rodman, August Alsina, Tamar Braxton, Frankie Muniz, Kim Coles, CJ Perry and Manny MUA. The reboot is set to debut on October 24, 2022.

This series provides examples of:

  • Compressed Vice: Flav and Ryan's mutual dislike of each other only shows in the 2nd episode and the finale. Ryan sees Flav as an annoying pervert while Flav sees Ryan as an Entitled Bitch with a case of Small Name, Big Ego.
  • Domestic Abuse: Sean Waltman is presented as this towards Chyna.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Averted in Season 3. When Brigitte slaps Flav, he slaps her back.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Omarosa is disgusted over Janice calling one of the Sunshine Strikers "Rainman."
  • The Friend Nobody Likes:
    • Corey Feldman. Lampshaded in Season 2 when Vince Neil made a cameo at the nudist resort, who stated when asked that he missed his Season 1 castmates. When asked if it included Feldman, he quickly said no.
    • Janice eventually becomes this. Though, it is not due to her being a bad person, but due to her antics becoming tiresome.
    • Tawny also veers into this. Lampshaded by Florence, who mentions that she creates the anger in the other castmates.
  • Hypocrite: Seeing pictures of his old image is a Berserk Button for Vanilla Ice, yet he's constantly trying to force Gary Coleman to say his infamous Catchphrase to Todd Bridges.
    • Tawny called Andrea a slut for taking a dare to jump into the pool naked, stating that she would never do that. Guess what she does in the final episode of the season?
  • In-Series Nickname: "Manny Mo" for Emannuel, "Mr. F" for Flav, "Dr. Flo" for Florence.
  • In the End, You Are on Your Own: Despite sympathizing with her, none of the other castmates support Janice against Omarosa slandering her as a mother.note  This is the reason why she decides to leave on the last night.
    • Andrea is upset that none of the other castmates defended her from what she saw as Slut-Shaming from Florence to the point where she almost left. As Andrea has shown to be a Shameless Fanservice Girl who likes getting naked, C.C. and Steve state that Florence has a point.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: While being called out by the cast for attacking Janice as a mother, Omarosa points out that they could've jumped in and defended her, but didn't.
  • Kicked Upstairs: In-Universe. In the process of producing a newscast, Alexis states that the reason she was made Executive Producer was because they didn't want to show a transgender person on TV.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Subverted. As much as Omarosa claims that she only plays up her "villain" status for the cameras, turns out that she's just as much as a Jerkass when she's not.
  • Mr. Fanservice: The purpose of holding a 'Man Pageant' in Season 6 was the ladies' demand of it.
  • Never My Fault: The reason why Tawny set up her talk show with the sole purpose of humiliating Flo was over her humiliation over not knowing the cost of the replacement weathervane. Despite the fact that it was a question that any reporter would've at least researched.
  • No-Respect Guy: Gary Coleman. He just want to run the diner. But the season 2 cast doesn't make it easy for him. Especially Vanilla Ice.
  • Once a Season: Near the end of the season starting with Season 2, there will be a segment called "Dirty Laundry" with Sally Jesse Raphael as host. Averted in Season 6, which was replaced with "Flo's Final Word."
  • Papa Wolf: At one point in season 2, Jordan Knight made a lecherous comment about the Olsen Twins. Dave Coulier, who was also on that season and has a close relationship with the girls to the point of viewing them as daughters, firmly but politely ordered him not to make any more remarks of that nature.
  • The Quiet One:
    • Marcus from season 4. He himself admitted he regretted being so quiet, and wished he'd have stood out more.
    • Sherman Helmsley in Season 6. You'll almost forget that he's there.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here:
    • Season 2: Gary Coleman, after being fed up with the cast failing to perform their duties at the diner (And Rob's constant trolling).
      • After being presented as a drunk and a slut on Sally Jesse Raphael's "Dirty Laundry," Trishelle decided to leave. Ultimately, she was talked into staying.
    • Season 5: After the cast failed to support her after Omarosa attacks her personally as mother, Janice decided to leave.
  • Sexy Surfacing Shot: In season 2, there's a shot of Trishelle Cannatella climbing out of a poll after Skinny Dipping while drunk (with Pixellation to cover anything inappropriate)
  • Spin-Off: Strange Love with Brigitte and Flav, My Fair Brady with Adrianne and Christopher.
  • I Take Offense to That Last One: When Omarosa suggested that Janice could go on and be high and drunk and curse people off for a living. Janice's response?
    "That's bullshit! I don't drink! Fuck you!"
  • Wedding Finale: Corey marries his fiancee Susie Sprague in the Season 1 finale.