MTV's The Challenge franchise has been a staple of the network for decades, and its current version, The Challenge: Vendettas, is the 31st season altogether. The show, which has its season finale on Tuesday, April 17, draws its contestants from a pool of existing reality stars, and there's no shortage of potential candidates. So, when is Season 32 of The Challenge?
UPDATE: MTV announced on June 5 that The Challenge: Final Reckoning will premiere on July 10.
EARLIER: As of right now, there hasn't been any official word from MTV on when the franchise's continuation will premiere, but the theme has been revealed. MTV announced in a live teaser in February that the next installment will be called The Challenge: Final Reckoning, according to E! News. Though the network has divulged this crucial piece of information, the premiere date and other details are still a mystery. The Challenge tends to average two seasons a year, however, so it's likely that another installment will arrive before 2018 is out.
The continuation of the show isn't that surprising, at least as far as viewership goes. According to a Rolling Stone article from January, The Challenge consistently beats out other big players in terms of ratings, often coming in on top of shows like The Rachel Maddow Show and Sportscenter. The people behind the series seem to be confident in future seasons as well, both of The Challenge iterations and the spinoff, Champs vs. Stars.
"Right now we’re shooting two Challenges and two Champs vs. Stars a year," Julie Pizzi, President of Entertainment & Development for Bunim-Murray Productions, told Rolling Stone, also stating that they were "working on" Season 32 as of the January article. "The network has had so much success [with the show] in the last five years — there’s a huge appetite for it, both in social media and on the channel, for it, so they’ve been kind of keeping us in the rotation."
The Challenge is also adding to its global arsenal, as Season 31 is the first season in which stars from MTV UK's show, Geordie Shore, have appeared. "It was really MTV's decision," Pizzi said in the same Rolling Stone article of the international additions. "They were like, 'How do we use franchises that we have across the globe and sort of integrate them [into this]?'" So, The Challenge seems to have no problem continuing to adapt as seasons progress. And, though no actual announcements as far as cast or premiere dates have been made for Final Reckoning, it seems like the people heading up the production are confident in the franchise's future, even past the upcoming season.
The Challenge, which began in 1998 as a spin-off duel between the casts of The Real World and Road Rules, also can be looked at as having been kind of an innovator in terms of reality television. "We had Battle of the Sexes back in 2001 — this was way before Survivor started doing themes," co-creator Jonathan Murray said in the same Rolling Stone article. "A lot of what we've done, starting with The Real World, The Simple Life, The Challenge — it has been sort of an incubator for other shows. It's the nature of the industry where people borrow from each other."
The internet is already buzzing with fans dying for Final Reckoning spoilers, or at least for confirmation that some of their faves might be back on their screens, so the interest in the series definitely seems to still be there among viewers. Especially if the show keeps casting reality stars who people already know and love, it seems like it could achieve a longevity even more bonkers than its current 31 seasons.
Fans will still have to wait for more information to be revealed about Final Reckoning, including air date and cast, but if the ratings and hype live up to the showrunners' expectations, The Challenge isn't going anywhere anytime soon.