"I think as a white person, she unwittingly is very typical of what Black people call a Karen," says Kevin after she hangs up on him.
Rebecca "Becky" Blasband stormed out of the "Real World: Homecoming" loft two episodes back following a discussion about race and privilege with housemate Kevin Powell.
While she has yet to return to their shared living space for the six-day reunion series, Becky did pop up on Thursday's new hour of the revival for separate conversations with both Kevin and Julie Gentry -- one outside the loft and another over FaceTime.
ICYMI: The tension between Becky and Kevin reignited after they revisited an argument they had on the original 1992 series, in which Blasband said she believed America was a melting pot of opportunity and discounted Powell's assertion that the scales had always been tipped in her favor as a white person. As Blasband's defensiveness escalated throughout the new, 2021 conversation, she eventually decided to tap out of the show altogether. Get a full breakdown of what happened here.
On the latest episode, Julie revealed she was the only one who Becky had responded to since leaving the loft. The two agreed to meet up in a nearby park to discuss what happened.
"I wanted to say that I had a great time for most of the time I was there and I feel like I gained a friendship with you. Here you were, the only person there who was supporting me," Becky told Julie when they reconnected. "Some people have grown up, other people, not so much."
Julie, however, felt Becky should have maybe rewatched the original series before agreeing to the reunion -- saying it was "very clear" to her they'd be revisiting some of their older issues.
"I just didn't want to fight. This just makes me feel bad. There's fighting for things and then there's bickering and arguing and hurtful things. I'm not there to be the poster girl for white privilege," Becky continued. "It's not who I am, I'm not a racist, I'll never be a racist. I love where I travel, I work hard, no one has a right to come down on me personally and that's what happened. The fact that everybody was just silent, I was genuinely hurt, they're not my friends."
In a confessional, Julie admitted she should have pushed back more on what Becky was saying, but she "couldn't go there, mentally." She added, "I don't want to say what I'm thinking."
When she got back to the loft, the cast regrouped so Julie could fill them in on what Becky told her.
"She thought this was going to be a little bit more of a 'Big Chill' kind of vibe, of us just hanging out, we could discuss issues but we wouldn't revisit the volume we had in the past," she conveyed. "When it didn't happen that way, she was very caught off guard and she didn't like how that went. She felt she had a really good time with everybody up to that point."
Julie then said Becky would be down to continue the conversation with her housemates, but only via a Zoom screen, like they've been communicating with Eric Nies -- who came down with Covid right before they started to film.
"If she can talk to us on a screen, she can talk to us in person," said Andre Comeau. Kevin, meanwhile, said he would prefer to talk to her one on one, so they could hopefully find some closure for both their past and present issues. He then FaceTimed her from another room, as she began to explain why she felt blindsided by the whole situation.
"When I was first talking to everybody, the producers, asking them what are their intentions for the show, what's the vibe? And they said, 'Do you want to revisit your conversation with Kevin back then? and I said, 'Yeah, I'd be really interested to actually have a real conversation with him,' but in a relaxed organic way," she said. "We're grown adults, we're in our f---ing 50s. And then they filled our loft full of gas and lit the flame."
"When they played that clip, it wasn't fair, it was out of context, it's rehashing old stuff from the past that we've all moved on from," she continued. "It's a belittlement of your intelligence and mine. I just want to tell you I am very sorry that happened. I don't want to be on that kind of a reality show, it's not what I signed up for, I didn't know what the f--- was happening."
"For me, as a Black man, who had gone through some horrific responses to how I was depicted on this show, I saw it as this is some closures that I need here, some conversations I need to have here," Kevin then told her. "Particularly in light of what's just happened in this country in the last couple years and where people are saying, 'Kevin, I'm listening to these conversations very differently.' That's a huge burden I've had to carry for nearly 30 years."
She told him she has "always" been on his side, but felt "a lot of times you don't accept it and don't believe it." Becky then reiterated that she has "a great bond with my friends, my Black friends, my white friends, my Latino friends, it is not a problem for us." Telling Kevin he didn't have the "right perspective" on her as a person, she said she "can't be the poster girl for white privilege in our conversations any longer, man."
"Then don't be," he said, as she told him, "That's something that is coming from you, my friend."
He went on to tell her she "might want to reframe" some of her language, particularly when she refers to her Black friends and taking Black dance classes. "You have to understand how even that comes across a certain kind of way," he told her. Her response: "Then you just don't like me and that's okay."
"Rebecca, part of the problem is the inability to listen and always wanting to have a response for every single thing to try to prove, 'I'm not this, I'm not that,'" he replied. "Say something, not 'I have black friends,' not 'I go to a Black dance class,' but 'Hey, other white people, this is what you have to read, this is what you need to watch, this is what you listen to, you need to challenge your education.'"
Becky wasn't having that either though, and told Kevin he was "trying to tell me how to be me." When he said it wasn't about her, but about "all of us," Blasband was still confused. "You're saying I'm saying all the wrong things and then you're saying, 'It's not about you,' it's not fair," she told him, adding that "all of us have different lives."
"My point is we have to pay attention to what's happening," he said, with Becky saying she has been, but also doesn't "always buy everything that's happening."
He then told her that she can have whatever beliefs she wants in her own home, but when she engages with other people -- like her roommates for the week -- she should also expect to be challenged. "They can challenge me," she shot back, "You didn't challenge me, you insulted me personally. That was a low blow. That doesn't work."
"With all due respect, you're perpetuating what a white sister wrote in a book called 'White Fragility,' whether you realize it or not," he told her. "Your feelings are hurt and you want to shut down the conversation. Stop being so fragile about anything."
As she exclaimed that she wasn't fragile, he told her she needed to "have the ability to take some constructive criticism about some of the things that have come out of your mouth."
She then told him all he does is criticize her, before he said she was "making things up again." She then hung up on him. With that, Kevin asked for the cameras to be turned off for a minute.
"Becky lives in a bubble and is divorced from a lot of reality. I think as a white person, she unwittingly is very typical of what Black people call a 'Karen' or what a white woman named Robin DiAngelo calls 'white fragility,'" he said in a confessional. "She's unfortunately embodying all of that and totally does not get it. Black people are tired of teaching white people about racism."
The episode ended with Kevin expressing to a producer that he wanted to leave, saying that he's "had it with this." There's only one episode left, however, and it looks like he'll be around for more of the finale.
New episodes of "The Real World: Homecoming" drop Thursdays on Paramount+.