Vince McMahon is always trying to get with the times. Back in 2013, he wanted to take a chance with reality television—given that it was all the rage—and it continues to be today. WWE took a chance on a Total Divas reality show.
It all began with Brie, Nikki, Naomi, Cameron, Natalya, Eva Marie, and JoJo. Surprisingly, lots of the original cast members have moved on and a lot of them are now out of the WWE.
But the show itself turned out to be a huge hit with the fans. The Bellas became a crucial part of the show’s success, and they even got their own spinoff, Total Bellas.
A lot goes into the show, including the cast—which is always changing. WWE is always willing to add in different cast members in order for the show to seem fresh. Eight seasons later, we can safely say they’ve succeeded in that sense.
However, a lot of fans tend to wonder what’s real and what isn’t. Like so many other reality shows, the answer is basically half and half. We see a lot of real situations but we also see moments that are totally exaggerated because of the show. In this article, we’ll take a look at both the fake moments and those that were way too real. Enjoy the article folks!
18 Fake - John Cena & His House Rules
One of the most entertaining aspects of Total Divas was seeing the relationship between Nikki Bella and John Cena. John was no ordinary fellow and he had a lot of strict rules for Nikki and the guests when it came to entering his house. A lot of the rules were true; however, Cena would later reveal that a lot of the rules were just exaggerated for the purpose of the show.
People also indicates that John gave up on a lot of his house rules once Nikki Bella moved into his place. For show purposes, Total Divas didn’t tell us about that little detail.
17 Too Real - John & Nikki’s Breakup
Surprisingly, this was all real as Nikki and John felt the need to document their breakup for everyone that followed their journey. Nikki admitted to CBS that filming this part of the show wasn’t easy and she even contemplated cutting the footage. However, Nikki ultimately used the scene as a source of inspiration for those in need. She explained to CBS;
“I didn’t tell the cameras to stop rolling even though I wanted them to. But I knew that a lot of women were going through that... but then we get into the ring and go through these different storylines and people question why I would say certain things; am I really that person?”
16 Fake - Alexa Bliss Buys A Pig
No, Alexa didn’t buy a fake pig or anything like that. She still has the pig and it has grown quite large. However, the thought process behind getting the pig was all scripted, Bliss said.
Alexa claims that getting the pig was all done because of the show as she wanted to add a bit of interest. Had it not been for the Total Divas show, we assume Bliss wouldn’t have purchased the pig at all. Although a lot of the show is scripted, the Divas must still live interesting lives in order to stay on the show, and getting a pet pig helped out in Alexa's case.
15 Fake – John Cena Not Wanting Kids
Total Divas exaggerated a lot of the storylines. One of them was John Cena not wanting to have kids–and this caused a lot of tension in his relationship with Nikki Bella.
What the show didn’t tell us is that Cena was actually open to having children during the later seasons. He even admitted this in a statement with US Magazine and Today, “I love her. I want to be with her. I want to make her my wife. I want to be the father of her children. I just want us to work.” Unfortunately, there might have been additional reasons for the breakup.
14 Too Real - Daniel Bryan’s Depression
This one was really hard to watch for viewers. Daniel’s depression wasn’t exaggerated for the show, though; he was actually going through the situation at the time. Daniel’s dream job was put on pause when it was said that he couldn’t wrestle anymore. Bryan struggled to think about his future knowing he had to give up what he loved the most.
We witnessed intense moments and conversations between Daniel and Brie during that point of the show. Everything we saw was very real, as Bryan admitted he was struggling with the reality of his life at that point. To Daniel’s credit, he never gave up and he’s now back in the ring doing what he loves.
13 Fake - Dolph Ziggler Wanting To Get Back With Nikki
Lots of exaggerations take place on Total Divas. This scene was not only exaggerated but the word online is that it was all completely fabricated in order to end the season with a bang.
The episode ends with Ziggler telling Nikki he still has feelings for her while Bella proceeds to slap him. On the next episode, the situation between the two is basically laughed off as if it was all staged. Without a doubt, if there was an actual love triangle taking place backstage, WWE would have stepped in and done something about it. Or at the very least, fans would have heard about tension behind the scenes.
12 Too Real - Maryse & Bellas Conflict
This conflict was completely legit. Maryse held on to lots of anger towards the Bellas for years. According to Maryse during Total Divas, the twins basically cost her a big opportunity–there was a rumor going around that the opportunity was a return to WWE for Total Divas. Maryse basically confirmed all the rumors on the show, stating that everything that was said about the twins was all real.
Maryse and Brie tried to work things out during an episode of Total Divas. Renee Young played the role of mediator, though things ultimately didn’t go all that well. Despite the real situation, both sides are now on good terms.
11 Fake - Summer’s Slap To Natalya
During the earlier seasons of Total Divas, lots of conflicts took place–it was like every show had a verbal dispute between Divas. Although it made for fun television, lots of moments were totally fabricated because of the show.
One of the most obvious instances of a scripted moment was Summer “spontaneously” showing up to Natalya’s house. If it was so spontaneous, why were the cameras around? Nonetheless, Summer would slap Nattie, which led to a minor dust-up between the two, without anyone breaking it up. It was like a PG Jerry Springer moment. Clearly, the film crew and producers intended for the drama to unfold, and likely staged it.
10 Too Real - Backstage Tension With Eva Marie
The early tension with Eva Marie was a little over the top–however, it should be noted that drama between Eva and the locker room was a legit issue. Things got very heated for real when Eva chose to get private training out in Los Angeles alongside Brian Kendrick, instead of going to the Performance Center like the rest of the WWE employees. It caused real turmoil backstage between the Divas and Eva.
Some problems were exaggerated, however, like the Bellas getting mad at Eva for looking at signs in the crowd during a match. For the most part, though, their tension was real—just a bit exaggerated.
9 Fake - Fandango & Summer Rae Breakup
Unlike the Cena and Nikki Bella breakup, this one was completely staged and strictly for the show. In fact, Fandango actually broke up with Summer initially via Twitter. This was all to spark interest for the earlier seasons of Total Divas.
Summer would go on to admit that the two splitting was completely mutual–some even think that the couple wasn’t legit in real-life and instead was only part of the show to create another dramatic storyline, given that they were a couple on-screen together with WWE. Despite the staged moments featuring Summer, she was a lot of fun and quite entertaining during her Total Divas run.
8 Too Real - Natalya At Her Father’s Eulogy
Sadly, in the summer of 2018, the great Jim Anvil Neidhart passed away. He was the father of Total Divas cast member Natalya.
Natalya is an open book on the show and she’s never been afraid to show her real emotions, even since the early episodes of the program. The same held true for her father’s eulogy. Nattie was extremely emotional saying goodbye to her father during the episode. It was all too real and one of the most emotional Total Divas episodes ever. In homage to his great professional run, Anvil will be inducted into the WWE’s Hall of Fame this year alongside Bret Hart.
7 Fake - Summer Rae & Brie Bella Conflict
During season two of Total Divas, it was quite evident that the reality show was going a little too far in order to create compelling moments. One of the most scripted moments featured Summer flirting with Daniel Bryan backstage, only to be confronted by Brie.
The entire shouting match between the two was clearly all a work and it featured some bad acting as well. Making things that much more bizarre, Nikki and Daniel were in the background watching the entire argument. It was a silly conflict and one that was entirely done to add more drama to the show. In the following seasons, the show moved away from these fictitious types of arguments.
6 Too Real - Maryse’s Stalker
On Total Divas, Maryse stressed out about a home invasion, and the entire ordeal was caught on tape by her home's cameras. What made it all so stressful is the fact that Maryse actually had a stalker in the past. This took place back in 2011 and she actually filed a restraining order against the 61-year-old who also threatened her, according to TMZ.
Maryse getting emotional about the ordeal was all very real and a situation that actually took place in her real life. Now, we’re not sure how much of the home invasion may have been fabricated, but we do know that Maryse had already run into past troubles, and that makes it more believable.
5 Fake - The Diva Trips
Throughout the show, we saw a lot of Diva trips. This wasn’t done by the Divas but instead strictly for show purposes. Even episodes that see the Divas get together is usually scripted by the show wanting shots of the cast together.
These types of scenarios create a lot more intensity and tension, which of course leads to increased views. Lana is a perfect example of what to expect when all the Divas get together, we’ve seen Lana clash with just about everyone from Paige to Natalya to Nia Jax. The trips are pre-planned well in advance by the producers, so we know what to expect.
4 Too Real - Brie Going Into “Brie Mode”
Brie Mode isn’t just some catchy slogan on a t-shirt. The real meaning behind Brie Mode is the Total Divas cast member going absolutely wild and partying it up. This isn’t fabricated and it’s an actual thing.
Brie gave us a glimpse of Brie Mode during her bar outing with Paige. From taking endless shots to dancing on top of the bar, Brie definitely didn’t disappoint. Even party animal Paige admitted that she was very impressed with Brie’s behavior. Husband Daniel Bryan was a lot less pleased. That being said, Brie Mode is definitely a lot rarer nowadays compared to her earlier days with WWE.
3 Fake - Paige’s Date With Nia’s Brother
While they were both living the single life, Nia Jax decided to set Paige up with her brother. The date was a total mess as Paige purposely seemed uninterested throughout the outing. This was one of those moments that seemed entirely scripted and only for show purposes in order to fill the episode. We doubt Paige would have behaved in this manner on a real date–it seems like everything she did was entirely magnified and overblown specifically for the show.
Nia’s brother definitely didn’t seem to be Paige’s type–though the way everything unfolded was a little too overdone for our liking.
2 Too Real - Lana’s Heat With Paige
"I felt like, over time, so many people were telling me what to do, and I don't do very well when people tell me what to do," Lana told us. "It all started from that, but it really escalated to something much bigger."
Lana took it a step further during an interview with Pop Culture, claiming she got anxiety watching her dispute with Paige over again on-screen. The two share legitimate heat, with Lana bashing Paige online and calling her a bully for her past antics. The two let loose on each other during a Divas trip, and you can tell the emotion showed between the two was legitimate.
1 Fake – Lana & Natalya Disputes
One of the most entertaining feuds to watch on Total Divas featured both Lana and Natalya. Although it was great for the viewers, a lot of it was completely overblown. One clear instance was Natalya shooting Lana’s phone and clothes into the ocean during the Divas trip—that was surely an exaggeration or at least pre-planned.
Natalya getting mad at Lana for training with Tyson Kidd, her husband, is another example–we doubt Nattie was really all that mad–this was likely dramatized for the show. But fans of the show love drama, and these two have definitely delivered that over the last couple of seasons.
Sources: Pop Culture, TMZ, Us Magazine, People, CBS