|No. of contestants||13|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||18 (including the Reunion special)|
|Original release||January 9 –|
May 22, 2001
Real World/Road Rules Extreme Challenge is the 4th season of the MTV reality game show, The Challenge (at the time known as Real World/Road Rules Challenge). The season is directly subsequent to Real World/Road Rules Challenge 2000.
Extreme Challenge is the first season that adorned the show with a subtitle, the series having begun a new trend of titling each season based on its format and theme. To date, it's also the only season in which the season title alters the show title, through the insertion of "Extreme" between "Real World/Road Rules" and "Challenge".
Extreme Challenge consisted of the third and final six-on-six Challenge. The cast was split up into two different six-person teams, one representing The Real World and the other representing Road Rules. The teams traveled via tour bus in the eastern U.S. and Europe competing in different challenges. Each time a team won an individual challenge, money would be added to a Monster.com team bank account. The last mission would be for the right to keep the money collected in the pot, an additional cash prize, and a car.
This was the only season without a regular alumni host/presenter introducing each challenge. Instead, various alumni provided audio clues.
|Episodes||Mission outcome||Mission MVP||Wheel of Good Stuff|
|1||Ring of Fire||Real World||Road Rules||N/A|
|Rope Courses||Road Rules||Real World|
|2||Blimp Water Skiing||Real World||Road Rules||Julie||Jeep|
|3||Fisherman's Wharf||Real World||Road Rules||Kameelah||Fujifilm|
|4||No Laughing Matter||Real World||Road Rules||Syrus||"Gimme Your Stuff"|
|5||Rollerball Resurrection||Road Rules||Real World||Christian||Dreamcast|
|7||Wrestling with the Past[a]||Road Rules||Real World||James||Auto Video Products|
|9||Sub-Standard||Real World||Road Rules||Syrus||Sea-Doo Watercraft|
|10||Bring It On||Road Rules||Real World||Emily||"Gimme Your Stuff"|
|11||Breath-Taking||Road Rules||Real World||Christian||Dreamcast|
|12||Tough Guy||Real World||Road Rules||Dan||iOmega MP3|
|13||Defying Gravity||Real World||Road Rules||Rebecca||Palm Pilot|
|14||Famous Couples Fashion Show||Real World||Road Rules||Jamie||"Gimme Your Stuff"|
|15||Medi-Evil||Real World||Road Rules||Julie||Buell Blast Motorcycle|
|15/16||Operation Human Shield [b]||Real World||Road Rules||N/A [c]|
|16||Toyota Motosports||Real World||Road Rules||N/A|
|17||Race to the Finish||Real World||Road Rules|
- Real World
- Road Rules
|8||Human Foosball[d]||Yellow Team||Black Team||$6,000|
- Yellow Team
- Black Team
- Real World won the final challenge, winning brand new Toyota Celicas. They earned $110,000 with each team member receiving $18,833. For winning the "Human Foosball" mini-challenge, Dan, Julie, and Rebecca received an additional $1,000 for a total of $19,833.
- Road Rules lost the final challenge, therefore losing their entire bank. For winning the "Human Foosball" mini-challenge, Christian, Emily, and James received an additional $1,000.
- Ramona Gray from Survivor: Borneo served as mission mayor for the first and last missions.
- Rebecca and James begin a relationship while on the show.
- Julie struggled with her college's decision to suspend her enrollment for a year due to her participation in the Real World.
- The Upright Citizens Brigade, including Amy Poehler, served as mayors and Tina Fey was a guest judge in the "No Laughing Matter" mission, in which the teams had to perform improv in front of a live audience.
- The episode entitled "Couple Fashion Show" featured both teams having to dress up as famous duos in a fetish club. This episode has never been aired following its original air date, for reasons that remain unknown.
- This was Michelle's last appearance on a Bunim/Murray show before being killed in a car crash one year later.
- After a paintball challenge went awry, both teams were given an opportunity to defend their actions in the court of Judge Mills Lane. Fed up with his team's refusal to defend themselves, Laterrian decided to present his team's case alone. Although he provided a strong defense, he lost because his entire team was required to appear before the court. Laterrian, however, did earn the respect of the judge and was presented the judge's gavel for his efforts.
- A mission was hosted by LL Cool J and Chris Klein. That mission involved doing a stunt similar to those done in the 2002 film Rollerball, which was being filmed at the time. Christian won this mission, and ended up winning an uncredited cameo in the film.
- This was the first Real World vs. Road Rules Challenge where a team (Real World) actually banked $100,000 in their team bank account. It was also the first Challenge in which a team beat the opposing team so badly in the missions, with Real World winning 10 challenges over Road Rules.
- Jon Holmes made an uninvited cameo appearance during mud wrestling mission in Boston. He was apparently wearing a "Beefy L'Ox" costume from the Monster Wrestling art/performance/comedy/sports group Kaiju Big Battel, and jumped into the ring during a match between Michelle and a male model. Jon was ejected from the ring by security, as the producers of the show were not previously told by Jon that he would be "pulling this stunt", and all footage of Jon was edited from the episode, except for a brief shot of one of Jon's feet that can be seen briefly in the background. Jon was wearing a pair of white Pumas with red stripes, they can be seen for just a few frames during a close up of Michelle's face during her match against male models. Coincidentally, these shoes were given to Jon by Eric Nies during the Road Rules Season 5/Real World All-Stars competition of the RR Season 5 finale'.'
- This was the first and only time there was a mission that was tested beforehand and the contestants got to it, but they couldn't do it because it proved to be dangerous and the producers nixed it at the last minute. The mission was a "human catapult" where there was no safety harness, just protective gear and a net to fall into. A tester broke their leg and another broke an arm.
|Title||Original air date|
|1||23||"A Challenging Decision"||January 9, 2001|
|2||24||"Blimp Water-Skiing"||January 16, 2001|
|3||25||"Budding Romance"||January 23, 2001|
|4||26||"No Laughing Matter"||January 30, 2001|
|5||27||"Rollerball Resurrection"||February 6, 2001|
|6||28||"Ayanna's Departure"||February 13, 2001|
|7||29||"Wrestling with the Past"||February 20, 2001|
|8||30||"Love and Foosball"||February 27, 2001|
|9||31||"Yes Sir...I Mean, Yes Ma'am!"||March 6, 2001|
|10||32||"Leader of the Pack"||March 13, 2001|
|11||33||"The Scariest Mission of All Time"||March 20, 2001|
|12||34||"Tough Love"||March 27, 2001|
|13||35||"Grudge Match"||April 3, 2001|
|14||36||"Good Intentions"||April 10, 2001|
|15||37||"Downward Spiral"||April 17, 2001|
|16||38||"True to Himself"||April 24, 2001|
|17||39||"Race to the Finish"||May 1, 2001|
The reunion special, Real World/Road Rules Extreme Challenge: Cease Fire, was aired after the season finale and was attended by the entire cast and was hosted by Melissa Howard from The Real World: New Orleans and Mark Long from Road Rules: USA – The First Adventure.
- Susie replaced Ayanna in Episode 7 when the teams arrived in Boston. Ayanna physically attacked Christian in the Road Rules bus after Christian made a joke to Laterrian that Ayanna perceived to be racist. Though the cameras did not capture the incident, and Christian did not want to send Ayanna home, the producers asked Ayanna to leave in episode 6. Susie replaced Ayanna when their casts received their next clue at the Real World: Boston house. The Road Rules team later admitted on the reunion that Ayanna was a more valuable physical asset than Susie.
- In episode 15, a dispute over the Operation Human Shield mission caused an intense argument between James and Syrus. Neither team was awarded $10,000 at the end of that mission, but in episode 16, both teams got the chance to defend their actions in court. Road Rules, with the exception of Laterrian, decides not to participate, so the judge granted the money to the Real World, although he acknowledged Laterrian for his admirable defense.
- Laterrian was honored by the judge and received a small gavel as a token, but there was no official MVP for this mission.
- In Episode 8, the mission had the contestants compete with three Real World cast members and three Road Rules cast members on two different teams. The Yellow team consisting of Christian, Dan, Emily, James, Julie, and Rebecca won the mission and were awarded with $1,000 in cash for each of them.