Netflix’s ‘Roaring Twenties’ Slammed For Ripping Off MTV’s ‘The Real World’


Netflix released a teaser of its upcoming reality series, Roaring Twenties, on Wednesday, cheekily named after the decade of the 1920s in Western society and culture, which will instead take place in the 2020s featuring a cast of eight diverse young people who also happen to be in their 20s. However, reality TV fans couldn’t help but notice a striking familiarity with the series, which is outlined in the following description.

In this new reality series filmed in Fall 2021, eight twenty-somethings set out to find success in life and live in Austin, Texas while learning to navigate the ‘new normal’ of 2020’s America. Watch as the cast embarks on this crazy journey, experiencing all the highs and lows that come with figuring out what it means to be an adult.

The Real World, which ran on MTV for 33 seasons until 2019’s The Real World: Atlanta, had a noticeably similar premise. Inspired by the 1973 PBS documentary series An American Family, MTV reality series took “seven to eight young adults [who were] picked to temporarily live in a new city together in one residence while being filmed non-stop.” Presumably, the only difference between The Real World and Roaring Twenties is that—at least, in the earlier seasons of the former series—MTV picked at least one 18- or 19-year-old to add a fresh-faced perspective of naivety to the household.

Heck, having a Real World set in Austin is hardly even groundbreaking—MTV aired The Real World: Austin in 2005 and the building has since served as both a Mexican restaurant and now steakhouse.

And yet, none of this is to say that Roaring Twenties won’t be any good. Maybe there’s a reason the concept ran its course on MTV, and Netflix is just the right platform to pick up on the “throw a bunch of young people in a house together” concept. But still, as word began to make its way around online, more than a few people chimed in to point out that the series is hardly original.

Roaring Twenties premieres on Netflix on December 20. Will you be watching?