Former Reality Stars

by umer | 7:03 AM in |

Former Reality Stars

Former Reality Stars. When their 15 minutes in the spotlight was gone, so was their fame. As “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” returns for another season, it’s unlikely the show’s pint-sized star, 7-year-old Alana Thompson, will make as many headlines as she did during the previous season, when she attracted the attention of even Vice President Joe Biden. The attention span of the average American TV viewer is about as long as a commercial break, especially with regards to reality TV. Sure, a handful of major stars have emerged (hi, Kim Kardashian!), but most don’t survive a single second past their 15 minutes. Here’s proof.
Richard Hatch, “Survivor”He was the first “Survivor” winner, the show’s first villain and he remains one of the most intriguing reality stars of all time. His penchant for round-the-clock nudity probably didn’t hurt his case either and perhaps even inspired the latest Discovery channel survival series, “Naked and Afraid.” Hatch became an overnight sensation when “Survivor” became an overnight sensation in the summer of 2000. And though his star burned brightly for a few months after his $1 million win, Hatch has kept a mostly low profile over the past decade, most notably serving 51 months in prison on tax evasion charges.

The cast of “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”

When “Queer Eye” premiered in July of 2003, the show became a phenomenon. The show’s premise — five gay guys provide a lifestyle makeover for a straight man — was perfectly positioned to capitalize on America’s fascination with metrosexual males, and the series became an unlikely hit, spawning books, a spin-off and even an Emmy Award. Though the careers of the show’s five stars — Ted Allen, Kyan Douglas, Thom Filicia, Carson Kressley and Jai Rodriguez, collectively known as the Fab Five — have varied, a few have continued to hustle TV gigs, though it’d be a major stretch to say any of their careers are currently hot.

Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag, “The Hills”

Few television couples have been as loathed as Speidi, who appeared for six seasons on MTV’s soapy reality series “The Hills.” The pair soaked up every moment of their 15 minutes, basking in the spotlight like they needed it to survive. The pair parlayed their notoriety into appearing on “I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!,” which ultimately proved to be a prescient title. The pair disappeared from TV — and our lives — once “The Hills” aired its finale, and, mercifully, interest in the pair post-cancellation has been mild, keeping them off our television screens for the past few years.

Puck, “The Real World”

Bike messenger David “Puck” Rainey was the first villain on MTV’s “The Real World,” and he was a great one. Crass, crude and almost always shirtless, Puck antagonized his roommates, particularly HIV-positive AIDS educator Pedro Zamora, mostly through a general lack of hygiene, and especially thanks to his penchant for doing things like scooping peanut butter out of the jar with his fingers. Though Puck has made the occasional media appearance since “The Real World: San Francisco” concluded nearly 20 years ago, he’s made more headlines for his frequent legal troubles, including charges for domestic violence, DUI and stalking.
Puck arrested domestic violence

Jon and Kate Gosselin, “Jon & Kate Plus 8″

Though they’ve been divorced for a few years now, the pair’s TLC reality show was a huge hit for a stretch there, and even though their marriage fizzled during the show’s run, it remained on the air post-breakup (renamed “Kate Plus 8″), though interest waned once the split occurred, and the network then canceled it. Along with the influx of cash, fame disappeared for both parties. Kate appeared on an episode of “Celebrity Wife Swap,” while Jon is rumored to be on next season’s “Dancing With the Stars.” Jon was also dragged through the mud recently by clothing designer Ed Hardy, who blamed Gosselin for ruining his brand — simply by wearing it. Ouch.

Hulk Hogan, “Hogan Knows Best”

He’s the most famous wrestler of all time, and his reality show, which lasted for four seasons on VH1, returned him to the top turnbuckle for a few years, even if it was his teenage kids who attracted the most attention, daughter Brooke for her “singing” career and son Nick for his drunken driving career. Since wrapping the reality show, we’ve seen a lot of Hulk, but not exactly in the way you might think. Hogan was involved in a sex tape scandal in which he was captured on tape letting his best friend’s wife experience some of that famous Hulkamania firsthand.

Farrah Abraham, “Teen Mom”

While it’s true that she’s still enjoying the tail — emphasis on tail — end of her 15 minutes, the release of a sex tape generally signifies the end of your fame cycle — Kim Kardashian or Paris Hilton exempted, whose sex tapes actually made them more famous — but Farrah is unlikely to enjoy that same kind of success. Hopefully the million bucks the former MTV star reportedly earned for her “Backdoor Teen Mom” porn will at least partially be invested in her kiddo’s future and not just bigger breast implants.

Jack Osbourne, “The Osbournes”

MTV’s “The Osbournes” ushered in the celebrity reality show craze, and the four-fifths of the Osbourne clan who appeared on it became media darlings (eldest daughter Aimee didn’t appear). Mom Sharon has become a TV staple, both here and overseas, as has sister Kelly, who currently hosts E!’s “Fashion Police.” Perhaps Jack is just working at his own pace, however. Though it seemed like perhaps he’d steer clear of the spotlight after the show ended, he’s been pretty busy lately, producing a documentary on his metal musician father, Ozzy, and appearing on a paranormal Syfy series called “Haunted Highway,” which begins its second season this month.

Flavor Flav, “Flavor of Love”

Yeah, boy! The Public Enemy hype man was an unlikely reality TV star. He parlayed an appearance on “The Surreal Life” into a second career as a reality star, headlining some half a dozen series, including three seasons of “Flavor of Love,” a Comedy Central roast and the sitcom “Under One Roof.” But the TV gigs eventually dried up, as did his Iowa fried chicken restaurant, and Flav has been pretty quiet — or at least as quiet as the loud-mouthed Flav can be — ever since.

Tila Tequila, “A Shot at Love”

When your stage name pays tribute to your favorite liquor, you can’t be too surprised to find yourself in an overlong post-reality show hangover. After two seasons of her MTV dating show, the model and actor has launched repeated Web ventures, including one with “Girls Gone Wild” tax evader Joe Francis. Not surprisingly, tilashotspotdating.com didn’t turn out to do much for her career, but at least Tequila can have the satisfaction of knowing that she’s the best-known Singaporean bisexual reality TV star ever.

Omarosa Manigault, “The Apprentice”

Given her strong personality, it’s hard to imagine that Omarosa, who became the villain on the first season of Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice,” worked for then-Vice President Al Gore before joining the show. She’s since become a reality TV icon, appearing on several series, including several editions of “The Apprentice” as well as a dating show called “The Ultimate Merger,” which also featured Trump. Her fame has never reached the heights it did during that inaugural “Apprentice” season, but she has managed to turn being a reality show contestant into a bit of a career. Sadly, she was dating actor Michael Clarke Duncan, whom she met at a Whole Foods, when he died suddenly in 2010.

Jake Pavelka, “The Bachelor”

Pilot Jake Pavelka originally appeared as a contestant on “The Bachelorette,” but it wasn’t until ABC anointed him “Bachelor” status on the show’s 14th season that his fame took flight. He’s one of the more famous “Bachelor” participants, and he extended his fame by appearing on “Dancing With the Stars” as well as “Bachelor Pad,” but despite his good looks and “aw, shucks” demeanor, Pavelka’s entertainment career seems to have crash-landed.

Kristin Cavallari, “Laguna Beach”
After appearing on MTV’s popular docu-soap “Laguna Beach” as a teenager, Cavallari attempted the near-impossible: turning reality show fame into a legitimate acting career. Though Cavallari wrangled several acting gigs, it was MTV who put her back on the map when it cast her on the final season of the “Laguna Beach” spin-off, “The Hills.” Since then, Cavallari has focused on charity work as well as being a mom to the son she has with her husband, NFL quarterback Jay Cutler.
The cast of “Jackass”
The “Jackass” TV series was a huge hit for MTV, and it eventually turned into a huge movie franchise for the network, but despite all of the show’s successes, none of the cast members have had a tremendous amount of success beyond it. It seemed for a time that Johnny Knoxville, the crew’s de facto leader, might transition into more mainstream acting roles, but that never materialized. Bam Margera and Steve-O both managed to stay on TV for many years post-”Jackass,” but in recent years nearly everyone’s careers have gone cold.