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July 28, 2014

'The Real World D.C.': Meet Ashley

by Anna Dimond, posted Dec 30th 2009 2:10PM
Ashley Real WorldTonight, a new season is dawning in Washington D.C. It's not at the White House, but on MTV when 'Real World XXIII: Washington, D.C.' premieres (10 pm ET/PT).

On the cusp of the series' return, we spoke with one of the new cast mates to get a taste of what's ahead. Ashley, a Houston local, offered a sneak peek at the friction that sparks in the first episode, as well as what drama, romance and throw-downs might be just around the corner. But don't expect all hot tubs and hooking up. As Ashley explains, this season's tensions hinge more on politics than ménages à troi.

Once you were cast on 'Real World,' did you ever think twice about being a part of it?
I had a few nights were I couldn't sleep, because I was so afraid of this side of me that people would see. I know I have moments where I feel like s--t... . I was afraid that edit would make me look like...Ashley Real WorldTonight, a new season is dawning in Washington D.C. It's not at the White House, but on MTV when 'Real World XXIII: Washington D.C.' premieres (10PM ET/PT).

On the cusp of the series' return, we spoke with two of the new cast members to get a taste of what's ahead. Ashley, a Houston local whom MTV describes as "a Portuguese beauty with a hot temper and a blunt demeanor," offered a sneak peek at the friction that sparks in the first episode, as well as what drama, romance and throw-downs might be just around the corner.

But don't expect all hot tubs and hooking up. As Ashley explains, this season's tensions hinge more on politics than ménages à trois.

Read our interview with fellow 'Real World DC' housemate Ty.

Once you were cast on 'Real World,' did you ever think twice about being a part of it?
I had a few nights were I couldn't sleep, because I was so afraid of this side of me that people would see. I know I have moments where I feel like s--t ... I was afraid that edits would make me look like just one thing, or just another, because I have a tendency to be very emotional ... I'm very extreme.

In the season premiere, all the cast members arrive in Washington, D.C. and meet each other for the first time. How would you describe your first impressions?
I was freaking out! I have never seen such a beautiful home before, so it was beyond me. I was flabbergasted.

During the first episode, here are a few hot buttons that come up right away. One is politics, and another is religion and later, sexuality. For you personally, are there any themes that we'll see?
Everything you just spoke of will become big themes. I'm very religious, as is [fellow cast member] Mikey, and to have that conflicting tension with [cast members] Ty and Emily is interesting to see how it unfolds. The sexuality thing with Mikey and Emily, and the tension between Mikey and I because of his sexuality is interesting. Politics-wise, I think we all learned how to treat each other better, but I don't think we'll ever agree.

How do you see yourself and your role in house?
I was happy that there were people that were as politically minded and as interested in politics as I was. But I don't agree with any of them about everything, so it gave me a little bit to work with -- that's what I like to say: "It gave me something to work with."

Are there any particular hurdles you face, or specific challenges that we'll see you face throughout the season?
Learning to hold my tongue with [the housemates] was difficult. Learning to listen has not been a strong suit for me. I went out there single, so a big part of my story is learning how to cope without a man.

What about 'Real World' romance? Do you have any instant pitter-patter of the heart when you arrive at the house?
I think there's an instant pitter-patter between everyone who got grouped together on the show. ... Mike and I do have a little cute flirtation going on ... But he thinks I'm cute. That's all there is.

What do you think defines you throughout this season -- what will we see, and what's missing?
I think right now I'm a bit of an opinionista, and I think that's a good thing. I like to [come off] as a strong, independent, capable female. As the show progresses -- and I'm hoping the show progresses because I've only seen three episodes -- I'm hoping they'll show that we're all people, and we're all well-rounded. I also have the most crying time on the show, so I think people just need to remember that we're human, and we're not characters.

You're very upfront about your politics. What was it like for you being in the heart of it all in Washington?
It was fantastic. I was a little concerned prior to going out there that I would always be in a debate. I was also afraid of being a little pompous, a little bit arrogant, I was afraid that locals wouldn't believe that we [on the show] could be intelligent people or able to have good conversations or know what we're talking about. When you think of reality television, you don't think of political debate.

There's a kind of evolution that 'Real World' has made over the years from hard-partying to more socially responsible. What do you think about your season, and what defines it?
I'm proud of our season. I don't think that I would be proud to be on a show that was all about partying and sex and hooking up. Not that we're not young people and we don't have fun, but I'm proud to be a part of the D.C, cast, and think it goes back to the roots of the 'Real World.' I grew up on the 'Real World.' I've seen every season -- it's really pathetic! But I [loved] the cast of Seattle [in 1998] and San Francisco [in 1994], and seeing young people pursue their dreams while they're figuring who they are and learning what they want ... And I feel that [this season] goes back to the roots of that.

Now that the show's wrapped, what are your plans?
Right now it's just acting school, acting books plays, movies. The whole nine yards ... Hopefully one day I'll be a Meryl Streep. I don't want [people to think] I did a reality show, and now I just hope to be famous. I don't want to be famous, I just want to act.

<a href="http://www.realworldDCmtv.com" _fcksavedurl="http://www.realworldDCmtv.com" target="_blank">The Real World DC: Meet Ashley</a>

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