On The Real World: San Diego, we met Sam McGinn, a 20-something lesbian from Virginia Beach who had a drag king alter-ego and some major game, picking up girls in every bar she went — much more than her straight male counterparts. But what was most evident about Sam from that season was her heart. Her penchant for kindness and keeping herself out of drama didn’t mean she didn’t stand up for herself, though, and often schooled her homophobic housemates on what is not OK to say about gay people. She was also able to wordlessly communicate to her peers that she is just like them and deserves the same respect, which likely won over some viewers who had never met a lesbian, or at least someone like Sam.
Tonight Sam joins three past San Diego castmates on MTV’s The Challenge, so we caught up with her to find out what she’s been up to since her last reality show aired and what we can expect this season.
AfterEllen.com: So what have you been up to since the airing of The Real World: San Diego?
AE: So now you’re attached! How did you meet your girlfriend?
AE: So where are you living nowadays?
AE: In this season of The Challenge, you, Zach and Frank are reunited and thrown on a team. At the end of The Real World: San Diego, Zach and Frank were not on good terms. Did they get over their differences and work as a team?
AE: The trailer for The Challenge shows a lot of blowouts, fighting and general insanity. Frank, unsurprisingly, is featured prominently making a scene. Do you generally stay out of trouble this season?
AE: Homophobia was an issue tackled in the Real World house, with Nate maturing and getting over his discomfort with gay people. Is this an issue in The Challenge house?
AE: Have you kept in touch with cast members from Real World: San Diego, or is the challenge the first time you’ve seen or heard from any of them since you parted ways? Are you close with anyone from that season?
AE: Reality TV magic tends to exaggerate the more extreme situations or reactions for dramatic purposes, and often times, people are portrayed as “types” — was Zach really that homophobic last season or was all that animosity simply because he personally didn’t like Frank?
AE: Some of the challenges look life-threatening and are really scary. Who is the biggest wuss on the San Diego team, and who was the bravest?
AE: Does your drag king alter ego $hawn Jade make an appearance this season?
AE: What was your favorite experience that you had in Turkey that you would like to share with AfterEllen readers?