The Real World: Philly

Nick Sampogna

Despite all the rumors, shooting delays and other conflicts, MTV has completed its filming and editing of the 15th season of “The Real World.” This season, the longest running television reality program set its sights on Philadelphia, our very own city of Brotherly Love. In case you missed the casting special that has aired over the past week, it is about time you got acquainted with our newest batch of Real World-ers.

This season’s cast includes four guys (Karamo, Landon, MJ and Willie) and three girls (Melanie, Sarah and Shavonda) who will “live in a house, work together and have their lives taped.” Everyone has their Real World stereotypes, and from the early look that I got, I’d say this house will appear no different.

Karamo is 23 years old and hails from Texas, but currently lives in L.A. He appears to be very big on family and even bigger on altruism, but his upbringing was filled with a lot of prejudice against whites. I imagine he’ll probably start off slow, but gradually work towards a greater open-mindedness towards others.

On the flip side, we see Landon, a 24-year-old sports fanatic with a craving for female attention and a fear of acceptance. I’d put my money on this guy being a fun-loving ladies man, but I guess we will have to find out together.

Every cast has its dramatic cast member, and I feel we may have found Philadelphia’s in Melanie. She was compared to Las Vegas’ Brynn on the casting special. Melanie is 21, and out to have a good time. We could have also found our wild-child in Melanie, but I think every cast goes a little crazy sometimes.

I would watch out for Sarah as well, who claims to be contentious and outspoken. Sarah’s problem could end up not only being her attitude, but also her tendency to use her sex-appeal to get what she wants. Do I smell as intra-cast hook-up? Who knows?

Shavonda looks like she will be the female counterpart to Landon, loving the attention she gets from guys. Her insecurities and pessimism will need to be overcome, but her current status in her relationship will probably keep her grounded, as will her obvious determination in putting herself through college.

Now we make our way to Willie. Willie is a gay Puerto Rican from New York, driven by desire to perform. His sexual orientation, as in numerous other seasons, will probably be a topic for discussion within the first few episodes, but there doesn’t seem to be too much trouble in anyone’s future. However, expect a confrontation or two involving him, as he claims to be very stubborn and confrontational.

To round off the rest of the cast, we come to MJ, who already seems as if he will be the resident sweetheart. Having brought his “southern charm” up from Tennessee, MJ, like many of his cast members, is currently involved. The struggle of a long-distance relationship is not new to this show, but should play itself out as interestingly as it always does.

What will happen when people “stop being polite and start getting real?” Even I cannot be the judge of that. From the looks of things, we have a very entertaining season of television on our hands. ‘The Real World: Philadelphia’ will begin airing on Sept. 7, at 10 p.m. For a closer look at the house, the cast and any other details about the show, check out