Real World Watcher: Las Vegas Episode 3 “Stands By Me”

I would be ridiculously curious to talk to the Real World producers about how they really choose who to be on each season of the show. Obviously, they scan through thousands of tapes to get an idea of who might be interesting to watch on TV, but I wonder if they bring in psychologists or psychiatrists to analyze the candidates to see who will play off of each other and how. I got to thinking about this this time around because Adam is an incredibly unlikeable character so far this season, especially because Leroy’s around. Adam blames his crappy childhood for being a remorseless ass now, but both Leroy and Mike had rough childhoods too and as Leroy points out, it’s not like they’re smashing things. As we see after yet another outburst from Adam this episode, the only roommate who really seems to care about Adam is Nany. It makes me wonder if there was some analysis done that put the girl who likes the dangerous boys and roots for the underdog together with the dangerous boy from the very beginning. As I noted when talking about the first episode, they were the only two that were paired up before going to the Hard Rock hotel. Everyone else showed up on their own. It’s interesting that she turned out to be the one that really defends him to everyone else.

I should probably get a little more chronological with this post. We start off the day after the previous episode which had Dustin getting really upset with Mike for kissing Heather in a game of Truth Or Dare. Mike got angry and mouthed off a bit, but the next day, Dustin tells Heather that he was more mad at Mike (she doesn’t once offer the piece of information that she got off her chair, crossed the playing field and kissed him). He then talks to Mike and they seem to squash their differences.

From there we get into more of the nitty gritty of the episode which kicks off with Naomi going to the club only with Adam. While they’re down there, the rest of the roomies talk about Adam. Leroy’s main point is that Adam has made absolutely no attempts at opening up to him and trying to really be his friend. There’s a lot of on-the-surface stuff, but Adam makes it worse by breaking stuff, having outbursts and risking their position at the club/hotel/casino. Down in the club (the one inside the hotel that Adam got dragged out of before) Adam gulps down drinks and decides to to get behind the DJ booth and taking his shirt off. Once again he gets kicked out. On his way back to the room, he pukes in a trashcan in the middle of the casino, hollers and then heads back up to the room. He tries relating the story to the group but no one else is interested, Dustin walks away. Later that night, Mike’s up reading and Adam starts asking him a bunch of questions. Out of nowhere, Adam asks if Mike is being a douchebag to him. The conversation evolves to Adam saying something about Mike not accepting him and Mike saying he doesn’t accept this part of Adam, that it is unacceptable, but Adam doesn’t like hearing that. Apparently he thinks he’s so perfect that he needs complete love from everyone and nothing partial.

The next day before finding out what their internship will be this season, some of the roommates are talking in the kitchen. Leroy explains that he was adopted after his birth mom drank herself to near death and he was taken away from her. Dustin talks about his mom. She’s bi-polar and would run around town during bad episodes. He had to deal with that throughout high school, but also was always worried that he would become bi-polar as well. THIS is what Real World is supposed to be about and I love it. Real people talking about the real shit they’ve been through. Sure, it’s stuff put together by producers for maximum drama, but it’s still based on reality. After that, there’s a getting ready montage as they get dressed for their internship meeting. Turns out they’re working for the casino helping to plan events, the first of which will be a motocross charity event for the Athlete Recovery Fund hosted by Carey Hart. The internship coordinator also takes a minute to call Adam out because he’s heard about the problem at the club and tells him to cut it out and grow up. Wise words Adam, maybe you should listen to someone for once.

After a brief conversation between Adam and Dustin where Dustin explains that making out with Heather is one thing, but that having sex with her would really complicate matters (not just on her end, to be fair, but with him as well), the whole gang heads down to the club. And, shockingly, Adam doesn’t get kicked out, but that doesn’t mean the evening ends well. They’re all out having a good time, but Adam keeps trying to get up on girls and once again gulping down drinks. One or two at a time, the roommates head back to the room, but Adam hangs back. Once again, the conversation returns to Adam with Leroy being the most outspoken against him, explaining that he’s willing to sacrifice neither his place at the club (VIP section/bottle service) nor his internship which could potentially lead to a career outside of being a garbage man for someone he just met. I love that Leroy is a normal person who doesn’t instantly fall in love with these strangers he’s been thrown in with. In fact, he’s saying something very much to this effect when Adam returns to the room after being turned down by several different women. Adam’s pissed because he thinks Leroy’s talking behind his back, so he smashes a bottle on the floor. Leroy gets right up in his face and tells him that he will say it all to his face. There’s a lot of back and forth and Leroy tells Adam to eat a male reproductive organ which really, REALLY sets Adam off. There’s more back and forth and Adam pushes Leroy a few times, but Leroy never gets violent.

Leroy walks away and Nany runs to Adam trying to talk him down. Adam explains that he grew up in juvie, but won’t tell her why yet. Somewhere behind the part of me that agrees with Leroy and intensely dislikes Adam for using his past as an excuse to be an asshole, there’s a tiny bit that hopes Adam sees these other people who have had a rough time and turned out not to be assholes, but I’m not holding my breathe. After that, Adam knocks on the confessional door where Leroy is once again explaining that he does not want to be involved in Adam’s bullshit. He opens the door and Adam says that, if he took back that comment about consuming that male reproductive organ, they’ll be cool, but Leroy says he doesn’t care and that ends there. Basically, it boils down to Adam thinking Leroy and he are friends based on…proximity and a shared living space, I guess, while Leroy defines a friend as someone who shares thoughts with you and actually shares aspects of their history. This episode makes me feel kind of bad for talking shit about Leroy in my write up of the first episode because he’s definitely more than the dude looking to get tail and, more than that, I agree with his assessments of situations pretty concisely. I think we would get along pretty well.

The next day, Adam talks with Nany about his past, actually opening up like a human being. He says he was dealing when he was 14 and got arrested at 16, but also got arrested at 14 for dealing on school grounds. At 16 he and his boys started stealing from dealers. They went after some dealer, there was a gun and someone got accidentally shot, but didn’t die. She’s way more understanding than I think the others will be. He says he learned his lesson and went to college, but did he really? He doesn’t like people telling him what to do because of that. He says he won’t apologize for anything, including smashing that bottle. He just comes off as an ass using his past as an excuse.

From here we get a look at what the gang is doing for Hart’s charity. Leroy, Adam and Naomi get put in a manual labor group that winds up cleaning bikes and setting things up the day of the performance. There’s a lot of tension between Adam and Leroy, but nothing happens. Meanwhile, the other group helps set up an auction of guitar, skateboards and helmets to support the charity. The event goes off without a hitch and everything’s cool, especially for Nany who gets to meet Pink during the auction. 

The episode ends with Leroy, Mike and Adam all in the kitchen area at the same time. Mike talks about his history with his parents getting locked up and him living with his grandma and later his friend. Adam then explains the gun and juvie stuff to them, but Leroy’s not really caring at this point. Mike and Adam have a newfound understanding for each other, but things between Leroy and Adam don’t really go anywhere as we see when the two of them have a conversation down in the casino. They reiterate a lot of what they have already said, Adam is Adam and Leroy doesn’t accept his behavior. Leroy asks Adam to apologize for breaking the bottle and the other night, but Adam refuses to apologize for seemingly anything. What would have been a quashing of problems essentially just reiterates them and the episode ends. I hope Adam realizes he’s being a douche and changes, but I don’t have a lot of hope for it. Oh, also, according to Heather, she and Dustin hooked up. Full on.

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