Nany and Wes last appeared on a (full) Challenge season when they were (coincidentally) partners on Rivals III. Fast-forward through Invasion of the Champions, Dirty 30, Vendettas and Final Reckoning, and the Real World alums are back in the thick of it and appearing on War of the Worlds. So did the two keep up with the players and game during their absence?
"I've been doing the spin-offs [Champs Vs. Props and Champs Vs. Stars], which keeps me involved with things. And I've been following the show and watching all the episodes and listening to podcasts," Duel and Rivals II victor Wes revealed to MTV News. "I'm the largest fan of this franchise than anyone else, and I'm proud of this game because of it. And I'm proud to even have the option to come back."
Meanwhile, the Free Agents silver medalist's experience away from the show was a bit different from her erstwhile teammate's.
"I hadn't watched the show since Rivals 3, so I didn't know a lot of people," Nany explained. "Rivals III was my sixth season. I had done six seasons back-to-back. It can be very exhausting, and I felt like my whole life was really centered around The Challenge and MTV. I took two years off -- I went back to school and graduated. I worked really hard, and right now, I work as a medical esthetician in Chicago. When I got the call [to be on War of the Worlds], I said yes. I had The Challenge itch -- I really missed it."
So how do they feel the game has evolved over the years?
"What I've noticed is, there's a lot of decision making that's taking place over the long term," Wes said. "People are starting to look at things like it's a little bit more of a mini career. In the past, you'd have one chance, and more than likely it was your one Challenge (maybe you'd get two), so you would come out and make big moves, and people used to do a lot more backstabbing and shady stuff. But now I think I'm noticing a larger contingency of people that are creating these gangs and keeping with those gangs over many seasons. So it's going to be highly crucial for me to get involved with one of those gangs, or else I'm just going to be one of the first people that they cut."
For her part, Nany thinks the global diversity has created a new shift.
"During Rivals III, we had our bloodlines there because the season before was Battle of the Bloodlines," she stated. "We had family members on that season. But coming into this season, it was completely different. We had so many people from different countries. We had people who couldn't speak the same language as everyone else. It was a lot different, for sure."
Offer your take on Wes and Nany coming back to the series, check out more War of the Worlds updates here and catch the premiere on Wednesday, February 6 at 9/8c!