Meet the New Cast of 'Real World: Skeletons' (And, Well, Their Skeletons)

A year ago, the producers of The Real World realized that living in a house with six strangers is no longer the riveting social experiment that it was 28 seasons ago. So they decided on a new gimmick — bringing in the exes of the seven main cast members without their prior knowledge — and it actually kind of worked. Compared to the Porland and St. Thomas seasons that came before it, Ex-plosion was a fireworks show. And now Bunim and Murray are trying to strike unsuspecting gold (bronze?) twice by bringing in the "skeletons" of the chosen seven cast members — people who remind them that they used to be heroine addicts, or that abandoned them: "The people we were running from are now living with us."

What actually made the Ex-plosion season slightly more compelling though, was less the concept of bringing secretly bringing in exes, but more casting the casting in general. Jenny and Brian might have had the most interesting/hilarious/scary relationships I've ever seen. And just Jenny in her own, who once described herself as "real as Colby cheese," which she went on to clarify meant, "real as f—ck." And she was! Let's see if the new cast's MTV bios offer any hope that they (and their skeletons) might offer that kind of Real-ness we've seen in comparable past season casts...

Images: MTV (8)

Violetta, 23 = Svetlana from Key West/Dan from Miami

Oh, you guys, Violetta is probably going to be the worst. “Brash” isn’t one of those words like, “insane” or “straight-forward” that can imply something good or bad about a person. When you describe someone as brash, as MTV has, five words into Violetta’s bio, you’re implying that they’re a nightmare (not even dressed like a daydream). You may also notice that Violetta looks like she’s about to cut you just for daring to look at her photo. She seems like some sort of cross between the attitude of Svetlana from Key West and diva-tude of Dan from Miami which is, frankly, a terrifying thought.

Though she claims to be a reformed bully,the fact that she’s shown getting into two physical altercations and telling someone on the phone that “this may be the first episode where someone gets, like, killed” in the less-than-five-minutes of footage MTV has released doesn’t seem particularly promising for Violetta’s redemption arc.

Madison, 24 = Brandon from Key West

Well, Madison is a real wild card wrapped in a curve ball, tucked into a helium balloon vocal register. The innocent-seeming southern belle goes back as far as Julie in Season 1; but this is Skeletons, and Becky getting captain of your high school cheer squad over you isn’t going to meet the drama quotient. No, Madison is a recovering heroine-addict. This makes me incredibly nervous for her involvement on this show; anyone who has stuck with the Real World this long remembers Brandon, the recovering addict from St. Thomas who failed MTV’s mandatory surprise drug test…and also that we found out in the 27th season that MTV has random mandatory drug tests. But I do like that her bio says she’s focused on ”building close female friendships and finding herself again.” Solid goals, sister.

Jason, 24 = Ace from Paris

From everything I’ve seen, Jason from North Carolina seems pretty delightful. An easy-going guy, looking to have a good time and note that housemates are attractive without also feeling obliged to note that he “would f—k anyone of them.” Maybe he’ll be like Ace from from Paris and actually live up to his “southern Casanova” descriptor without being super sleezy. This should be a great experience for him, right? It’s probably all a coincidence that in his bio much has been made of him never knowing his father, and in the season’s sneak peak there’s a clip of him shaking hands with an older gentleman, looking stunned, right?? Stay strong, Jason.

Bruno, 24 = Frank from Las Vegas

Meet Bruno, the roommate who would f—k anyone of his female roommates. OK, I’ll try not to judge him off of one 30-second clip, because something about how hard his bio is trying rings particularly “clueless Frank from Las Vegas.” So, hi, nice to meet you, Bruno. MTV tells me you’re a “stylish, sensitive ladies man” who spends 30 minutes a day “sprucing” your hair. What are some other things about you? Ah, you were also born in Portugal, have a complicated relationship with your father, had to reteach yourself how to walk after being hit by a car, haven’t spoken to your model brother in three years over a “petty” argument, and — as implied by your MTV bio — have a bad temper as a result of the physical discipline enforced at your Catholic school.

The options seem endless (and Brian’s brother is listed by name in his bio), but my fingers are crossed for a nun showing up at the door on Bruno’s skeleton day.

Nicole, 23 = Marie from St. Thomas

Nicole sure is from Staten Island; and while we’ve seen tough talkers like her before in the likes of fellow New Yorker, Marie from St. Thomas, a self-described female “player” is a Real World rarity. But Ms. Steal Your Girl has just started to feel the pressure to grow out of her hook-up-and-run ways now that both her triplet-sisters, who she’s never been away from, are engaged. Prepare to see a girl trying to grow into a woman while int he absolute worst environment to strive for self-improvement

Tony, 25 = Dustin from Return to Las Vegas

Tony’s bio is a minefield. Tony was overweight and self-conscious as a youngster, but now that he’s all hottie’d up, he’s a regular lady-slayer. In fact, “Like James Bond, girls want to be with him and guys want to be him.” The MTV copywriter either hates Tony, or two different people wrote his bio, because while the first sentence states that Tony can’t ever stay faithful to one girl, the last sentence reads as follows, ”Tony can’t stand it when guys disrespect women and will not hesitate to save a damsel in distress.” He feels a bit like a Dustin from Return to Las Vegas: definitely sweet, definitely southern, maybe a little dense.

Sylvia, 25 = Melissa from New Orleans (hopefully)

Sylvia, you might be able to save this season from itself, right? You seem sensible. I even saw you wearing a t-shirt in a promo clip! Like a t-shirt you got from a blood drive or something, not even of the graphic variety. MTV touts up her tequila drinkin’ “cultural traditions” (ugh), but then they get around to it: ”Sylvia is always the first to crack a joke and make everyone laugh…and refuses to let anyone control her or put her in her place.” Might we have another Melissa from New Orleans on our hands?

Of course not? But pack your best knock-knock jokes and juggling balls, Sylvia, because it’s one thing to blindside someone with an ex-boyfriend, but it’s quite another to surprise them with the parent that abandoned them 24 years ago. We’re really going to need you to be on your “making everyone laugh” A-game, Sylvia.