Challenge Retrospective: The Island Awards

Allan Aguirre
5 min readApr 26, 2017


While we have the objective history of the Challenge in the wikias, and the show intact to look back on to see how great the olden days were, we are missing some big things: AWARDS. As a major basketball fan, my friends and I spend hours on discussing who the league MVP is, who the rookie of the year is, and who are the top players per position are. I began with Fresh Meat 1, and now done the Duel 1,Inferno 3, and Gauntlet 3.

Today I came here to talk to you guys about the Island. The Island is possibly the worst season ever the Challenge, and it is my least favorite. It killed me having to watch it again for this article. I love you guys, so read my thoughts and never consider re-watching the Island. The problem with the Island is that it eliminated the best parts about the Challenge: the challenge, the eliminations, and the final. It became a weaker version of Survivor where they gave all the people booze, and there was rampant misogyny and sexism. Ugly season.

The Rules: I will be giving out an MVP award for both male and female competitors on the season. MVP does not just go out to the pair that won the season, but the individual competitor who brought the most to the show: physically, socially, mentally, entertainment wise, hook ups, arguments, circumstances, etc. I will be naming First Team All Challenge, and Second Team All Challenge. These will be 5 person lineups consisting of the best/most important competitors from that season using the MVP criteria, and it can be 5 guys and 0 girls, or 5 girls and 0 guys, or just 3 guys and 2 girls. It will consist of 5 competitors regardless of gender.

Rookie of the Year awards will be given to both genders, and I will also be giving awards out for Most Disappointing Players of the Season(both genders), Top Physical Competitors, and Underdog of the Season. Here we go:


Male: Kenny Santucci Female: Evelyn Smith
This was Evelyn’s season. She had always been an alpha female,this she displayed that she did not want to be the best female competitor, but the best competitor out of everyone. Evelyn continually took shots at the Kenny/Johnny alliance stronghold on the game. She won a face off against two male competitors, Dan and Tyrie, and while Tyrie was bad, beating two males is always impressive. Then she took Johnny’s key, forcing him to actually play the game for once, where was heavily assisted by Derrick. They did not let Evelyn compete again until the final free for all face off where she defeated everyone without a key. She probably wishes she did not take the deal to win with Kenny and Johnny,while also glad that she took the money. The Island was an atrocious season, and Evelyn was the only person I truly recognize for being a good competitor on it.

Here is what amazes me about Kenny on the Island: he lost the first face off and got a key due to the group voting off Tonya instead due to fear of him as a player, then he never got his key taken despite being the leader of an elitist sexist alliance and was never even a target due to Bananas being public enemy #1, and in the end he won doing nothing. Kenny Santucci did not play a good game, but he had such a dominant personality that nobody did shit and it just baffles me. He did hookup with Johanna, good on him.

Rookie of the Year

Male: Dan Walsh Female: KellyAnne Judd
As lame as the face-offs were, KellyAnne beat queen Rachel Robinson and Robin in a face-off getting her short lived key. She went from the beautiful girl on Real World Sydney to being a solid athlete on the Challenge. Her friendship with Evelyn was an important plot point in the season, and it built up for the season coming soon, the Ruins.

The Danimal had his demons with alcohol on the Island, but he was an entertaining fun guy to be around. Glad he got help, and I believe he is a comedian today!

First Team All Challenge

Evelyn Smith, Kenny Santucci, Derrick Kosinski, KellyAnne Judd, Johanna Botta
It made me sad to watch Derrick on the Island, he should have played with Rachel, KellyAnne, and Evelyn, instead he ceded to evil and was Kenny’s work-dog. He went to a face-off when he already had a key just to ensure that Johnny would get one for their boat. That is loyalty.

Johanna gets on this for getting a piece of Mr. Beautiful’s ass in his prime. I love Wes as a person, but in terms of looks, that is a killer upgrade when talking about pure sexuality.

Second Team All Challenge

Johnny Bananas, Robin Hibbard, Ryan Kehoe, Paula Meronek, Jenn Grijalva

Bad season.

It should be noted that Johnny was peak asshole on that season. The way he spoke to women was unforgivable.

Best Physical Players

Male: Abram Boise Female: Evelyn Smith
During the episode one face-off, Abram screwed up at one point massively, and was still able to come back to beat Kenny. He did more in that one episode than any other guy did all season.

Evelyn won two faces-offs. She was smarter, stronger, and faster than everyone else in the field.

Most Disappointing Players

Male: Abram Boise Female: Rachel Robinson
Two of the great Road Rules competitors who could have changed up the Island very much were both quick exits. Abram left for work stuff where he had to ensure that his employees got paid, which is responsible and adult of him, anyone that says otherwise is wrong. Rachel was an alpha female who got beat by some votes in a misogynist male dominated game. I am glad that Evelyn ended up winning, but had Rachel stayed in the game with Abram, Ev, and KellyAnne, they could have controlled the game.



Allan Aguirre

27 years old. I blog about MTV's the Challenge and will dabble into other subjects occasionally. Follow me on Twitter for the occasional bad joke.