Johnny Bananas Says, “The Challenge” Is Going In A “Relative Direction”.
Love or hate him, Johnny “Bananas” Devenanzio is an integral part of the world of “The Challenge,” and despite his absence in recent seasons, he has played an important role in the show’s growth over the years. While he’s not on our screens for the time being, he’s been very vocal about season 37, offering his perspective – and constructive criticism – on the direction of the show.
Bananas, who is now hosting the Death, Taxes and Bananas podcast which breaks down Spies, Lies and Allies, has been critical of the current season, but told E! News that he is “constructive criticism”. He said he loved The Challenge and that it was an important part of his life, so he wants it to be successful for a long time to come.
“I grew up with this show and spent my twenties and now most of my thirties, some of the best years of my life, on this show,” he told the outlet in an exclusive interview. “I’ve shed so much blood and tears on the show that I want more than anyone to see it succeed.” That being said, he had a lot to say about the show and where he thought it was struggling and what it could do to improve it.
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Bananas told the outlet that he felt a need to speak about the “related direction” he believed the show had taken lately. “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it,” he said, explaining that the simplicity of the show that fans loved has been replaced with too many “frills and gimmicks” over the past couple of seasons.
An onslaught of new personalities from around the world on the show made it even more difficult to get longtime fans on board, he explained, as many of them have a bond with the veterans who have watched them for years. While Bananas admitted that these vets are getting older and don’t have new “real world” seasons to pick newbies from producers, they need to look elsewhere, “I just think they can do it differently.”
His final suggestion was on the format of the last few seasons, talking about popular topics from the past that were excellent at creating drama while keeping things simple for viewers, like Rivals, Good Guys vs. Bad A ** ** or even exes. However, he made it clear, “I don’t really know if I want to deal with exes today,” when the reality star recently broke up with Morgan Willett on fraud allegations.
So does Bananas think he’ll be back on The Challenge soon? “The problem with the flagship show now is that it’s so long,” he replied. “It’s eight to 10 weeks.” He said with his other commitments like the podcast and NBC’s “1st Look,” which requires him to do 21 episodes for a season, it would be really hard to go for that time.
“When and when I come back, it’s that I don’t want to do it halfway,” said Bananas. The seven-time champion stated that he had no interest in just going on the show to get paid and leaving as it would “cheapen” his legacy. “If and when my schedule allows ‘The Challenge’, I would love to go back, and I think that ‘The Challenge’ also takes a bit to provide guidance.”
“All Stars,” which will see its second season premiere on Nov. 11, is a more likely option for the reality star as it has a shorter time constraint and the mood is more appealing to him, he said. While the “Real World” alum won’t be featured in season two, some of his former “Key West” co-stars will be competing, namely Tyler Duckworth and Janelle Casanave.
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