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The Most Violent Stars of Reality Television

From Sammi on ‘Jersey Shore’ to Stephen from ‘The Real World: Seattle,’ these stars aren’t shy about getting tough

Sammi, snookie, jwoww, Jersey Shore

Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire/Getty

From Sammi on 'Jersey Shore' to Stephen from 'The Real World: Seattle,' these stars aren't shy about getting tough

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Nicole ‘Snooki’ Polizzi

Rolling Stone cover girl Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi is famous for a lot of things. Her taste for fuzzy pink slippers, fried pickles and gorilla juiceheads. Her short stature. Public drunkenness. But it wasn’t until she was decked in the face by a belligerent bar patron on the fourth episode of Jersey Shore in 2009 that Polizzi became a beloved reality TV star better known as Snooki.

While Snooki wasn’t the one who threw the punch, her bar fight is just one of many incendiary moments that are staples of riveting – if sometimes disturbing – reality TV.

Here are 21 other reality stars who found fame by refusing to keep their hands to themselves.

By Sarene Leeds

Snooki Discusses Smushing and the Stress of Jersey Shore in Rolling Stone Cover Story

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‘Jersey Shore’: Sammi ‘Sweetheart’ Giancola and Jenni ‘JWOWW’ Farley

Snooki’s fellow guidettes have been frenemies since Season Two in Miami, when JWOWW and Snooki attempted to tell Sammi about Ronnie’s infidelities in a now-infamous letter. After two epic bitch-slap fests – one in Miami and the other at the start of Season Three in Jersey – Sammi and JWOWW appear to have finally reached a truce, but not before Sammi popped Ronnie a new one for seeking relationship advice from JWOWW.

Ronnie should've just read JWOWW’s new book, The Rules According to JWOWW: Shore-Tested Secrets on Landing a Mint Guy, Staying Fresh to Death, and Kicking the Competition to the Curb, and saved himself from Sammi’s wrath. Instead he completely trashed her stuff after their 705th lovers’ quarrel. Breaking Sammi’s glasses, Ron? Really? No wonder she went home to Mommy. Just break up already. For real. Please.

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‘Teen Mom’: Amber Portwood; ‘Teen Mom 2’: Jenelle Evans

Amber and Jenelle first appeared on MTV’s 16 and Pregnant series, and now they’ve parlayed their fame into notoriety on the spinoff Teen Mom. While they’ve blown their chances at any Mother of the Year awards, they’ve assured themselves placement in the annals of reality-TV history thanks to their affinity for assault. Anger-management-deficient Amber liked to use hapless on-again-off-again fiancé Gary Shirley as her own personal punching bag (in front of their toddler-age daughter, no less – which landed Amber briefly behind bars), whereas perennial party girl Jenelle, who has taken Amber’s place as Teen Mom 2’s resident bad girl, prefers to take her frustrations out on her constantly nagging mother – in the form of shoves and vicious physical threats.

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‘You’re Cut Off!’: Jenn Jowett and Aimee Johnson

It seems fitting that a croquet mallet was the weapon of choice in the squabble that erupted between two spoiled women undergoing “princess rehab.” A civilized game goes horribly wrong when, after being verbally taunted by a drunk Jenn, Aimee reaches her breaking point as Jenn grabs her croquet mallet – and causes Aimee to start swinging. Needless to say, the production guys are forced to step in front of the cameras in order to keep the girls from cracking skulls. With her baked-potato obsession and permanent stink eye, lollipop-sucking Jenn established herself as the queen of crazy early on, so much so that eventually her antagonistic behavior was considered a danger to her housemates and she was booted from the show in the fourth episode.

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‘The Real Housewives of New Jersey’: Teresa Giudice and Ashley Holmes

Don’t ever tell Teresa Giudice to “pay attention,” because you might get a table flipped at you. RHONJ closed out its first season with a heated argument between shopaholic Teresa and cast “villain” Danielle Staub, in which Teresa accused Danielle of being a “prostitution whore” and wound up taking her anger out on a poor, defenseless dinner table. Unfortunately, fellow Housewife Jacqueline Laurita’s impressionable teenage daughter, Ashley Holmes, was in the room at the time. By Season Two, Ashley figured physical abuse was totally legit, and when Danielle and Teresa had their next inevitable meltdown, Ashley took it upon herself to rip out Danielle’s weave.

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‘The Real World: Seattle’: Stephen Williams

Since brutal smackdowns are so commonplace on an average episode of the Bad Girls Club nowadays, the “slap heard around the world” from this 1998 season of MTV’s seminal reality show seems tame by comparison. As departing cast member Irene McGee made her way to her car, she called housemate Stephen a “homosexual.” Incensed, Stephen retaliated by first throwing her favorite stuffed animal into the water, then stopped her car so he could open the passenger door and hit her in the face. Irene may have laughed it off, but the remaining housemates didn’t find any humor in what had happened. Stephen was allowed to stay in the house, provided he took an anger-management course. Oh, and he came out as gay 10 years later.

‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta’: Sheree Whitfield and Kim Zolciak

These Southern belles have no qualms about getting in one another’s faces when there’s a bone to be picked (just ask Housewife NeNe Leakes and her “gay husband” Dwight Eubanks – seems like they can’t have a conversation unless they can literally breathe on each other). But in Season Two, former football wife Sheree Whitfield crossed the line while in the midst of a “You’re a fucking liar!” and “trailer trash”-punctured argument with aspiring one-hit wonder Kim Zolciak, when she started tugging on Zolciak’s platinum-blond wig. This of course happened after Zolciak said Whitfield had “no class." We can only wonder what Whitfield wanted to do to Zolciak after she heard “Tardy for the Party."

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‘Bridezillas’: Karen Refaeli and Lisa Coppola on Bridezillas

If there’s anything that Bridezillas has taught us, it’s that getting married can be the most miserable time of your life. Staten Island’s Karen Refaeli has been one of the more unforgettable brides on the show thanks to her penchant for announcing how much her wedding gown and engagement ring cost, and for insulting doormen and street vendors (“You nine-dollars-an-hour human being!”). She had such a violent temper that she not only physically threatened both her seamstress and hair stylist on camera, but mere minutes before she walked down the aisle, she destroyed her red-rose bouquet. New Jersey bride Lisa Coppola, who had the distinction of remarrying her ex-husband on the show, also had the misfortune of vocal friends and family who pointed out that her veil was a slightly different shade than her dress. In a fit of anger, Lisa tore the veil to shreds – along with her sanity.

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‘Kourtney and Kim Take New York’: Scott Disick

When your reputation precedes you (“In the past, Scott used to just have random anger outbursts,” said Khloe Kardashian), it’s not easy to prove that there was actually chivalry behind a club brawl. Chuck Bass wanna-be (and Kourtney Kardashian baby daddy and maybe-fiance) Scott Disick decided to intervene when he saw his sort-of-sister-in-law, Kim Kardashian, getting verbally harassed by the drunk girlfriend of a guy who wanted his picture taken with the celebutante. Disick’s intentions may have been noble, but an opening line like “I don’t talk to people of your nature” is usually not the best way to diffuse an already tense situation. No wonder Kourtney blamed the subsequent hand-to-hand combat on her man – escalating an argument is just asking for an ass-kicking.

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‘Big Brother 2’: Justin Sebik

It’s never a good sign when your fellow cast members go on camera to admit that they are scared of you. Justin, a bartender from Bayonne, New Jersey, who didn’t seem to own a shirt (or know a dentist), was already on thin ice for physically threatening houseguest Kent. But that didn’t stop him from asking another houseguest, Krista, “Would you get mad if I killed you?” and then placing a kitchen knife to her throat. Oh, did we mention that he kissed Krista after he pulled the knife away? Such a romantic, that Justin! When the d-bag was called in to meet with the show’s producers, he astutely stated to Krista, “I think it might have been that knife to your neck?” He was evicted from the house (and the show) immediately.

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‘The Bachelor’: Chantal O’Brien

Judging from his initial reaction (and rumors that he’s already popped the question), Brad Womack likes a woman who doesn’t hold back, even if that means slapping him across the face at their initial meeting. When Chantal O'Brien was introduced to the repeat Bachelor, she greeted him with an assurance that what she had for him was “not from me, it’s from every woman in America. I’m just a messenger.” The smack was Womack’s punishment for refusing to propose to either of the two finalists when he appeared on the show four seasons earlier. Apparently Womack was turned on by O'Brien’s feistiness: Although the season finale of The Bachelor doesn’t air until March 14th, the New York Post is claiming Womack not only chose O'Brien – who is now one of the final two left on the show – but is engaged to her as well.

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‘Flavor of Love’: Brooke ‘Pumkin’ Thompson and Tiffany ‘New York’ Pollard

Some bachelorettes hope for a rose, others a big-ass clock. When Flavor Flav didn’t offer Pumkin a golden timepiece during the penultimate elimination ceremony, she took it out on her rival, New York. Naturally, New York didn’t help matters by initially provoking Pumkin to “slap me, bitch.” Instead of hitting her, Pumkin spat in New York’s face, causing New York to shove her to the floor, necessitating Flav himself to restrain the future I Love New York star. See, not only was Pumkin bummed over Flav’s rejection, but Flav had added insult to injury by insinuating that she was only there for the fame: “I know you got love for me but I think you’re still here more for TV than for me. This is like your sixth reality-TV show.”

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‘Bad Girls Club’: Natalie Nunn and Portia Beaman

Considering the title and premise of this show, Bad Girls Club deserves its own list for the top 10 most violent moments. So since we could only pick one, Natalie and Portia’s Season Four clash seemed like a no-brainer. Wiz Khalifa’s former flame started shooting off her mouth about Portia’s daughter, suggesting that Portia didn’t even know who her child’s father was. Bad move, Natalie. The best part of this fight had to be the one-minute-plus buildup to the actual brawl, which pretty much followed Portia as she ran through the house looking for Natalie. When the mauling finally began, it was a little anticlimactic – the fight was way shorter than the running-through-the-house lead-in. But it had all the elements of a classic reality-TV smackdown: hardcore thrash music, hair-pulling, bitch-slapping, rolling on the floor and of course, production guys pulling the two Bad Girls apart.

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