Jay Talks The Challenge: Total Madness & Johnny Bananas Dating His Ex – Hollywood Life

‘The Challenge’: Jay Reveals Why He Still Never Felt ‘Safe’ After Winning 1st Elimination

We caught up with 'The Challenge' star, Jay Starrett, about winning the first elimination of the season, how he felt about living with his ex, Morgan's, boyfriend, Johnny Bananas, and more.

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Jay Starrett was the first player on The Challenge: Total Madness to win an elimination, therefore earning himself a ‘red skull’ and the guarantee to run the final…if he makes it that far! However, just because the other players knew they’d have to face an elimination at some point, doesn’t mean that Jay felt confident that he was safe from being thrown in again. “I immediately felt safe when TJ [Lavin] said, ‘You can run the final.’ I’m like, we’re good,” Jay admitted to HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “The problem with The Challenge is…there’s always twists and turns every episode. You never know what’s going to happen. I knew this didn’t mean I was safe. So I knew I had to go into the house and keep trying to pull the numbers and make an alliance.”

Unfortunately, coming into the game as a rookie AND the only Survivor alum on the show put Jay at a disadvantage when it came to getting numbers on his side. “[Being the only person from Survivor] gave me an advantage in terms of strategy and gameplay — I know how to strategize with numbers and people I’ve never met before,” Jay explained. “But being the only Survivor out there did not help at all, otherwise. Everyone was like, he’s alone, he has no allies, let’s throw him in. I’m like, you guys are idiots! You need numbers! I don’t understand why you don’t think like this!”

Coming onto the show, Jay knew cast members Swaggy C and Kaycee Clark from outside events, as well as Nelson Thomas from when they were both on Ex on the Beach. However, as a self-proclaimed “super fan” of the show, there was one person he was hoping to work with: “I was hoping that Wes [Bergmann] was not working with [Johnny] Bananas because Wes is usually down to work with the rookies, and is down to start scheming, and I’m a schemer and down to stratgeize,” Jay admitted.

As viewers soon found out, though, Wes and Bananas were working together, and fans of the show may not realize that Bananas and Jay have a bit of a shared history: Jay used to date Johnny’s current girlfriend, Morgan Willett. However, Jay said that having to live with his ex’s boyfriend didn’t bother him. “I didn’t give a s***,” he laughed. “I didn’t care at all. I was just like, you know what, you’re with Morgan now. Good luck, bud! Enjoy it! I’m going to do me, you do you, and we’ll see what happens. But I was fine with it going in.”

We’ll have to keep tuning in to see if anything does come between these two. The Challenge: Total Madness airs on Wednesdays at 8:00 p.m. on MTV.