There are many, many people around the world who are utterly addicted to reality television. There’s just something about it that’s fluffy and mindless and perfect for unwinding after a hard day. And, everyone has their preferences. Some love competition style shows, where someone is vying for a prize. Others prefer shows that just capture someone’s real life. Others still need their reality television with a healthy dose of gossip. Whatever your favorite style, there’s one thing that many people absolutely can’t help but love — a good villain.
You see, everyone loves rooting on an underdog. However, there’s just something about a great reality television villain that inspires a total love/hate relationship. On the one hand, they can be kind of awful. On the other hand, they stir up such drama on screen that it’s kind of amazing to watch. There are some who are unintentional villains, and some who flat out come on the show with the intention of ruffling feathers. Either way, they’re a blast to watch in action.
Since reality television has been around for quite a while now, many popular shows have gone through nearly a decade of different cast members. There are some who are memorable because of what great players they were, or how compelling they were on screen. Some are entirely forgettable and were erased from memory the moment they left the show. And then, the villains. Over the course of roughly two decades of reality television, there have been quite a few amazing villains we loved to hate — here are just 15 of them.
“Boston” Rob Mariano
Many people don’t view Boston Rob as a villain because he was always smiling and was surprisingly charming. However, there’s no denying that he would lie and backstab to whoever he needed to win — he wasn’t there to make friends.
Sure, he managed to find his wife along the way, in fellow co-star Amber. However, for the most part, he kept his eyes on the prize. He competed on the popular show Survivor a whopping four times before he finally managed to snag the win. Yes, some individuals managed to get that win the first time, including his wife Amber, who people picked over Rob because she was just flat out nicer. However, in the end, his villainy paid off.
Even though Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick are no longer together, he’ll always be part of the Kardashian family. After all, he has children with Kourtney and has spent so much time around the whole family. And honestly, what would the show be without Lord Disick?
For a while, he was the slightly cheeky boyfriend. Then, he was a total jerk that everyone in the family absolutely hated. He was the master of snarky one-liners, which was super entertaining. However, he also did some shady stuff that many people really couldn’t get behind. And, let’s not forget that he has actually been a pretty decent dad.
He’s a bundle of contradictions — and a ton of fun to watch on screen.
Richard Hatch was on the very first season of Survivor ever, which many reality television fans may not even remember. He played the villain role from the get-go, and was even called a “snake” by someone on the show. However, his strategy clearly worked — he won his very first time on the show.
He also has a bit of a villainous streak in real life, as his tax evasion charge proves. It’s too bad his criminal history means he can’t ever return to the show again, because it was kind of amazing to watch him do his thing. His was a strategy that certainly wouldn’t work for everyone, but it worked for him.
Tiffany “New York” Pollard
There’s one thing everyone knows about Tiffany Pollard — you never need to guess what she’s thinking. She’s more than happy to get in your face and tell you everything that’s on her mind, which is kind of refreshing.
From the moment she appeared on Flavor of Love, Pollard made it very, very clear that she wasn’t on the show to make friends. It’s a bit of a reality villain staple to claim that, but it was clear she meant business. She feuded with others on the show, she even spat on someone, the list is endless.
The thing that makes Pollard a love to hate is the fact that she never really seemed malicious with her actions. She was just a woman who did whatever she wanted without worrying what other people thought.
Most people can admit that The Bachelor is kind of cheesy, but many fans watch it anyone in the name of true love. They want to see love blossoming, and they want to see that grand proposal at the end. Courtney goes down in reality television hall of fame because she basically destroyed that illusion for everyone.
You see, even though she ended up getting the proposal, Robertson made it clear she wasn’t really there for true love. She wanted to be on television, and she wanted to win her season. So, she did everything in her power to make that happen.
None of the women in her season really got along with her, and she even went on to write a juicy tell-all after her season had wrapped. Talk about a true villain move!
We can’t imagine what The Hills would have been like without Spencer’s villainy. Sure, Lauren had her own relationship drama, and the setting was glam. But, that little extra dose of drama in the form of Mr. Pratt definitely made it must see tv for many reality fans.
He came on the show and almost immediately split up two former BFFs. He did some pretty awful things, but people absolutely loved to hate him. He was on the cover of all the tabloids at the time, and even now, people are fascinated by what he’s up to.
He’s mellowed out post-show, but we kind of miss villainous Spencer.
Even if you haven’t seen her season of The Apprentice, Donald Trump’s infamous reality show, you’ve probably heard of Omarosa. I mean, the woman is a reality television legend!
The Apprentice was a bit different than other shows in that it wasn’t just for a financial prize — it was kind of for a job. Most of the contestants in the earlier seasons were legitimate businesspeople who wanted to land a dream job and get international recognition. Omarosa realized this, and she wasn’t there to mess around. She wanted to win.
She went on quite a few reality shows after her first appearance, playing the same kind of character every time. She got under everyone’s skin, she manipulated people, and pretty much every contestant had bad blood with her at some point or another. That kind of track record is almost impressive!
Her reality television days seem to be behind her now, but she certainly was entertaining.
Juan Pablo Galavis
There are many former Bachelors that fans weren’t super fond of. In fact, the vast majority provoke less than positive reactions. However, there may be none that are hated quite as much as Juan Pablo Galavis.
We say love to hate because, well, he was just so bad that you couldn’t look away. He had annoying catchphrases (we can’t even hear the phrase “ees okay” without cringing now”). He had some pretty backward views. He made terrible comments, and he was overall just kind of a jerk.
He certainly wasn’t a gem that every woman would want, but somehow those ladies still competed for his affection.
“Evel” Dick Donato
Big Brother is truly an insane show for reality television villains because there’s just nowhere to escape. Sure, with other shows you may be isolated to some degree. However, there aren’t other shows where you are literally stuck with your cast members 24/7. I mean, even on Survivor, you can wander into the jungle for a little quiet time!
Dick Donato was an absolute terror around the house. He was mean to his fellow cast mates, he had bad habits, he used terrible language, the list goes on and on. I mean, the man literally referred to himself by the nickname “Evel Dick.” Need we say more?
Russell Hantz has been on three seasons of Survivor now (and, surprisingly, one season of Australian Survivor). We wouldn’t be surprised if the producers invited him back another time or two because he’s incredibly entertaining.
Some people absolutely hated him because of his villainy. Others couldn’t get enough of his antics, because it made for juicy television. Regardless, something about his strategy was effective because he managed to get to the finals twice.
He still hasn’t snagged the win, though, and we’d bet that the Survivor producers just might keep inviting him back until he does, like they did with Boston Rob.
Simon Cowell is in a bit of a unique position in that he’s a star on talent-based reality television shows, not competition-based ones. On those types of shows, often there isn’t much time for character development of the contestants. You only really get snippets of their personalities, so no true villains emerge. Enter Simon.
Now, judges by nature have to be a little bit tough at times. After all, their job is to judge everyone that walks across the stage. However, Cowell seemed to absolutely relish in being brutally honest with contestants. Many claimed he was just flat out mean, but come on — he was also super entertaining.
At this point, we can’t imagine the reality talent show world without Simon Cowell in it!
We have to admit, there aren’t that many contestants of America’s Next Top Model that stand out years after they appeared on the show. Unless you achieve supermodel status, most models aren’t well-known to the general public.
However, there was one contestant who many fans likely still remember because of her over the top antics. We’re talking about Jade Cole. She got a spot on the show one season because, well, she’s gorgeous and photographed beautifully. However, she was also a total villain. She was arrogant, she had no trouble coming at other contestants, and she even lied to the judges when she couldn’t master a CoverGirl commercial.
The jewel in her villainess crown? When she was invited back for an all-star season and very vocally, publicly declined. Yikes!
Corinne definitely goes down in the reality television hall of fame as one of the most talked about contestants ever. She was on the season of The Bachelor with Nick Viall, but most people were talking about Corinne rather than any of the budding romances.
She talked about her nanny constantly, which many people had strong opinions about. She would flat out pull Nick away from other conversations to monopolize his time. She basically was willing to do anything she needed to make sure she got tons of screen time and brought the drama.
Fans tuned in week after week just to see what she would do next. That’s the mark of a true reality television villain!
Reality television fans who have been watching Kristin Cavallari’s latest show, Very Cavallari, may not consider her a villain. Sure, she can be a tough boss at times, but she’s not that bad.
When we refer to Cavallari’s villainous days, we’re talking earlier — back when she was on Laguna Beach and The Hills. Back when she was a teen, she was just bold and unafraid to say what she thought, which made her a villain in comparison to the other cast members. Then, when she snagged her role on The Hills, she was basically hired to play the villain.
Cavallari makes no secret about the fact that she viewed The Hills as a job. She was there to be the villain and deliver the drama, and that’s exactly what she did.
Jerri Manthey deserves a mention because she was pretty much the first female villain on Survivor. Men like Richard Hatch had been doing it from the very first season, but it wasn’t until Jerri that women had an icon to emulate.
She wasn’t afraid to argue with other cast members and drive them a little up the wall. She also wasn’t afraid to manipulate things a bit to get what she wanted. Manthey never ended up winning any of the seasons she appeared on, but we can’t deny that she was a ton of fun to watch.
Who knows, maybe one day she’ll return once more.
References: Complex, This Is Insider, OK Magazine