- CC Deville, of Poison (I may have been into Poison in 7th grade, but unless you have access to my mom's attic, you can't prove it)
- Tawny Kitean, of rolling-around-on-a-Jaguar-in-a-Whitesnake-video-20-years-ago fame
- Sherman Hemsley, of The Jeffersons fame
- Steve Harwell, of Smashmouth. Yup.
- Andrea Lowell, of Playboy TV (you know, I do not get this channel, but based on my shameful fascination with E!'s The Girls Next Door, I'd totally watch it if I did)
- Alexis Arquette, drag performer and brother of Patricia, Rosanna and David
- and, serving as the cast's "full-time and on-call therapist/advisor" (I shit you not): Florence Henderson
So, as at least half the people reading this blog know, I have been a fan of the Surreal Life ever since that day, oh so many years ago, when my friends and I happened upon the first season and fell in love. We got together every week to watch it. We taped it when we couldn't assemble. We wasted hours discussing just what, exactly, was wrong with Corey Feldman.
Corey Feldman carried the Surreal Life from episode to episode with a signature mixture of Fucked-Up and Annoying-yet-Earnest Manchild Desperation. He railed against eating meat from atop his leather shoes. He took a half-hour dump in Vegas while the rest of the cast waited for him in the Surreal Life Van. He cried when Andrea from 90210 wouldn't listen to him. He asked his young, kinky girlfriend and her fake boobs to marry him on the air, and then, dressed like Louis XIV, he wed his child bride, weeping all the way to the chupa. He was perfection, and it was a magical time.
And then, we watched the second season, and although no one could hold a candle to Corey, the combination of Tammy Faye's mascara-clad sweetness, Vanilla Ice's crazy asshole antics and Trishelle's pitiful boozing was somewhat sustaining.
But it all kind of fell apart for us in the third season. Despite inspiring the bigwigs at VH1 to create a spinoff based on their beautiful relationship, Brigitte and Flava Flav were just icky, not interesting. It did result in a viewing of Red Sonja, which in turn resulted in the creation of The Red Sonja, (a drink consisting of grenadine, vodka, and the venereal disease of your choice), but that was pretty much it.
I watched scattered episodes of the fourth season alone, not too drawn in, but it had its moments, mostly involving that pill-popping tranny who used to wrestle. And the current season, the fifth, has recently grabbed my attention only because Balki is a fucking mess, and I love it.
But yeah, I guess the sixth season awaits. We shall see.