10 Most Epic Reality TV Meltdowns

Reality television has reached such mind-boggling heights of omnipotence on our screens, it’s becoming difficult to know when real life begins – especially if you spend your college days watching it in your pyjamas and smoking bowls. Like real life, it has its ups, its downs and its moments of downright boredom. And like real life it has those occasional magical moments of pure human breakdown. So it is that we bring you the top ten greatest reality TV meltdowns of all time.

10. Celebrity Fit Club – Dustin Diamond vs Harvey Walden

Professional screen nerd Dustin Diamond has spent the last two decades peddling the shit out of his run as the wiry Screech from ’90s classic Saved By The Bell, mainly by gloating constantly about his frankly hideous sex tape which surfaced like a bad smell a few years ago. However, his on-screen boasting got the better of on-screen judge and former USMC sergeant Harvey Walden IV, who ended up telling Dustin in no uncertain terms that if he didn’t remove himself from the studio his face would soon be muffled by his own genitals. Dustin looked sheepish for a while and left; Walden hopefully cut down on the steroids.

9. Finland’s Next Top Model – Janice Dickinson

Janice Dickinson is so hot and so not at the same time it makes the mind boggle; she is literally a freak of nature, like a malformed pike with mercury poisoning and plastic surgery. Janice decided to throw a characteristic tantrum on the Finnish version of Next Top Model, leaving the dinner table in a whirlwind of expletives only to bail tremendously down a flight of stairs. Cue an on-camera outburst of yet more expletives and a post-ambulance ride insistence on ‘special treatment’ at the hospital – and you have yourself a professional reality television moment of magic.

8. Charm School – Sharon Osbourne vs Megan Hauserman

We wouldn’t mess with Sharon Osbourne – you have to be a tough broad to cope with Ozzy for three decades. So when, on the reunion of Rock of Love: Charm School, Megan Hauserman accused Sharon of only being famous for washing her husband’s genitals, she diced with death. Sharon, who had already calmly informed Hauserman that she shouldn’t be allowed to breed, went on to throw a glass of water over her nemesis, prompting a 5-man security intervention. Charming.

7. The Amazing Race 15 – Canaan and Mika


As Canaan reiterates, while he forcibly attempts to push his girlfriend headfirst into her worst nightmare, it was a million dollars at stake for a “stupid water slide.” It’s The Amazing Race, and fledgling couple Canaan and Mika are ahead with this obstacle – a 6-story water slide – between them and the prize. The problem? Mika’s scared of water, and heights. Canaan tries every tactic to get her down, while Mika tries asking God, who can’t have been listening. The couple were inevitably overtaken and eliminated from the competition.

6. The Surreal Life – Vanilla Ice

In one of the best on-screen meltdowns ever seen, Rob ‘Vanilla Ice’ Van Winkle appeared on The Surreal Life back in 2004 alongside various ‘celebrities,’ including pornography legend Ron Jeremy. During a tense moment of elimination, Ice realized that his new best buddy Ron had clearly voted for him to get the chop, and lied about it. Within minutes, the ’90s ‘rapper’ went from ice-cold to oven-fresh, trashing the set and punching the walls, all the while screaming “backstabber” in Jeremy’s face.

5. Celebrity Apprentice – Melissa and Joan Rivers

Joan Rivers has had quite a decent run of cracks in her time, so it is a little disappointing that she decided to single-handedly undermine her position as one of the only funny women in comedy by acting like a prima donna in front of flatulent, toupée-d bag of potatoes Donald Trump on the latest series of Celebrity Apprentice. Her daughter was fired, so she decided to join her in a humiliating flurry of obscenities and badly worded insults before hobbling out of the building like an angry hag.

4. Tool Academy – Angelo


A breakdown courtesy of Tool Academy which made every man in America smile just a little bit. Meatheaded gym pervert Angelo went from grinning chauvinist to whimpering momma’s boy in the time it takes to microwave a hot dog. He blubbered in front of his girlfriend during a segment in which he was required to watch footage of himself boasting about his manliness and affection for adultery, causing his sweetheart to suffer a near-nervous breakdown and threaten to leave him. Karma can be a sweet, wonderful thing.

3. My Super Sweet 16 – Spoilt Lexus Girl

Have you ever felt really down about yourself? Ever felt worthless and world-weary? Watch My Super Sweet 16; it’s cheaper than Prozac. The highlight of this festival of spoilt, preppy nonsense was when birthday girl Audrey decided that the painfully expensive Lexus her mother had bought her for her birthday had been given to her prematurely, quote unquote ruining her “party” and her “life.” Never has the evil side of Western civilization been more perfectly demonstrated in one little tantrum. Sadly for Audrey, the whole of America saw it happen. Personality fail.

2. America’s Next Top Model – Tyra Banks

In what can only be described as a mess of ambiguity and self-righteousness on both parts, Tyra Banks had one of the nuttiest showdowns in reality TV history when she decided to rage at contestant Tiffany on America’s Next Top Model. The crime committed appeared to be that of indifference and a bad attitude, but whatever the reason, it sure got under Tyra’s skin, causing her to verbally assault Tiffany – and the room – from the comfort of her judges’ podium, rapidly plunging the already morally faltering show into the realms of Jerry Springer.

1. She’s Got The Look – Laurie’s Breakdown

In one of the more unsettling moments in reality TV history, wannabe model and self-proclaimed holistic spiritualist Laurie had what can best be described as a moment of inherent madness as she pleaded with the judges to let her go home while removing her clothing and jogging on the spot. A padded cell seemed more appropriate than home as the painfully skinny basket case exposed her breasts and giggled insanely, on national television, in front of a perplexed table of judges and models. She had no trouble leaving the show after that.

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