Johnny Bananas, CT, Wes and More Vets on Why They Can't Stay Away From MTV's The Challenge

Exclusive: E! News was on the set of The Challenge: Champs vs. Pros and talked to all of your favorite vets

By Tierney Bricker May 16, 2017 7:06 PMTags
Watch: Why MTV's "The Challenge" Stars Keep Coming Back

"It's like a drug."

Obsessed with MTV's The Challenge? So are its competitors, who can't resist returning to one of the longest running reality competitions on TV, debuting in 1998. Over the years, the show has produced some of reality TV's most well-known stars.

So what keeps some of these fan-favorites coming back for the insane physical challenges and partying each year? For some, it's all about the family unit they've created over the years.

"I just took a couple of years off and I missed it, my dysfunctional family that I live with abroad," Chris "CT" Tamburello, who recently became a father, coming off of his big win on The Challenge: Invasion of the Champs, told E! News.

Camila Nakagawa added, "At the end of the day, we're all a really screwed up family, so we can say that we hate each other, but we miss each other whenever we're not together."

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But for others, it's about the competition and pushing themselves. "I love to compete," Darrell Taylor simply said.

As for Johnny "Bananas" Devenanzio, arguably the franchise's most well-known player, he said, "I love the competition. I love having something to train for and be ready for, but also...look at the opportunities we get." 

After taking a bit of a break, Wes Bergmann is back in action for the latest edition of The Challenge. "I think it's one of the coolest games that's ever been created and I'm going to kick myself when I get old for saying no to any of them," he said. "I have a desk job, a day job, a normal person's job, in the middle of the country. Don't get me wrong, it's exciting and fulfilling and the best thing ever, but this is my vacation, this is my hobby. Some people golf, some people play ultimate Frisbee, some people kickbox, I go on Challenges."

And for some champs, it's all about the Benjamins, baby. "I know that check clears pretty good!" Jordan Wiseley admitted with a laugh.

Taking place over six episodes and hosted by NFL star Victor Cruz (Sorry, TJ Lavin!), The Challenge: Champs vs. Pros finds our group of champs taking on their toughest opponents yet: professional athletes.

"It's refreshing to be competing against fresh faces," Johnny Bananas, who has competed in 13 seasons, said of taking on stars such as Lolo Jones, CM Punk and Shawne Merriman. 

The Challenge: Champs vs. Pros premieres tonight at 9 p.m. on MTV.