‘The Challenge’: Why Cory Wharton Believes the Show Is a ‘Blessing in Disguise’
In response to the current rightful civil protests, MTV competition series The Challenge has released several statements and action steps to support the black community and Black Lives Matter movement. Several Challengers, including Cory Wharton, have applauded the show for standing in solidarity. He expounded on why he appreciated the reality series so much in another tweet.
Cory Wharton on ‘The Challenge’
After appearing on The Real World: ExPlosion (2014), 24-year-old Cory Wharton made his debut on the competitive spinoff The Challenge: Battle of the Bloodlines (2015), alongside his cousin, Mitch Reid.
The two placed second, winning $37,500. He returned for Rivals III with former Real World roommate Ashley Mitchell, but they were sent home before the finals. In Invasion of the Champions, he eliminated three competitors to place third, winning $26,250.
After two poor performances in Dirty 30 and Vendettas, Cory entered Final Reckoning halfway through the season as a Mercenary. However, he was disqualified shortly after physically attacking Tony Raines over a plate of pasta.
Cory then took a three-season break before returning for Total Madness.
Cory Wharton returned for ‘The Challenge 35’
The 29-year-old and now father-of-two entered the 35th season in a good position as he had an alliance with “The Holy Trinity,” made up of Kailah Casillas, Nany González, and Jenna Compono, as well as longtime friend Nelson Thomas.
Other than occasionally stepping in to help Nelson get out of trouble, Cory has mostly remained out of the spotlight. After winning two daily challenges, the Real World star wanted to nominate himself for elimination so he could earn his coveted red skull to enter the finals.
However, Johnny “Bananas” Devenanzio campaigned first, and they threw the veteran in instead. Although the Tribunal interrogated the 29-year-old, Wes Bergmann chose to go into the elimination against his rival turned ally.
In a close battle, Johnny Bananas came out on top, sending his new friend home.
Why Cory Wharton calls the show ‘a blessing in disguise’
Around the time Episode 10 aired, protests and riots broke out across the country stemming from a viral video of a police officer killing an unarmed black man, George Floyd.
For the first time, the official Challenge Twitter account did not live tweet during the episode, and instead encouraged their followers to support the black community.
Black Challengers on Season 35, Cory and Chris “Swaggy C” Williams, as well as several others, applauded their show for standing in solidarity with them.
After the episode aired, Cory posted a picture with castmates Johnny, Wes, Nelson, Swaggy C, Fessy Shafaat, Rogan O’Connor, Kyle Christie, and Josh Martinez and further explained why he genuinely appreciated the show.
According to him, the experience forces one out of their “comfort zone from the airport on.” The 29-year-old continued, “You have no choice but to sit down and listen to these people,” as well as “hear their perspectives” and “points of view.”
Therefore, they “slowly start to build a friendship, a respect” with each other, which Cory considers “a blessing in disguise.” The Challenge 35 airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. EST on MTV.