Vinny Guadagnino is used to the reality TV cameras after six “Jersey Shore” stints and two “Family Vacations.” He just might be more comfortable without the “reality” part, though.
In the five-plus-year gap between “Shore” and “Vacation” — you know, that stretch of time when Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi had two kids, Jenni “JWoww” Farley tied the knot and welcomed a son and daughter, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino became The Incarceration, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro moved on from Sam, Paul “DJ Pauly D” DelVecchio DJ’d the club scene and Deena Cortese said “I do” — Guadagnino pursued a hosting career, landing his own talk series “The Show with Vinny,” “Vinny & Ma Eat America” and leading MTV aftershow chats.
Returning back home after filming the second season of “Jersey Shore Family Vacation” in Las Vegas, the Staten Islander jumped back behind the mic for MTV’s Video Music Awards pre-show red carpet coverage.
“That was probably the coolest experience of my life,” Guadagnino says. “We’re used to walking the carpets and being the talent, so it felt really good to be there as a part of the production because that’s the sort of thing I went to school for and want to pursue after ‘Jersey Shore.’ ”
There’s no current expiration set for how long the “Shore” house crew will keep heading out on “Family Vacations,” but Guadagnino’s not in any rush either. The 30-year-old, who attended SUNY New Paltz and the College of Staten Island, has found his footing in MTV’s reality realm. Alongside his housemates, he’s responsible for the series’ record-shattering viewership.
Below, Guadagnino delves into what we can expect to see from the rest of this second “Family Vacation” season. New episodes air every “Jerzday” (Thursday) at 8 p.m. on MTV
A lot has changed for the group outside of the series. Revisiting “Jersey Shore,” how has the house dynamic continued to evolve?
Everybody’s experiences have kind of shaped them to be the new people they are today. I think Jenny and Nicole are hilarious. I think Nicole is more hilarious than ever and it’s because she’s a mom now. It’s because she’s had those experiences and you know moms go pretty crazy. Moms, they drink wine all day, they want to get out of the house. I always say moms go harder than any teenage guy you’ll ever meet. So, there’s that element. But also the element of family and people being real. I think everyone’s been humbled, matured and grown up now so it reflects in all of us when we’re dealing with each other and being authentic. I think that’s the No. 1 thing people wanted to see on TV, and miss on TV, people not faking it for the cameras.
You guys have known one another for so long, but it seems as you go on these trips together you’re still learning so much about one another, along with the viewers.
We never used to be like a real family back in the day we were kind of more friends who had a shore house. Now, we really are a family and we talk to each other every day even if we’re not filming.
Nicole, she couldn’t boil water back in the day. Her idea of cooking was taking a pickle out of the fridge. Now she’s a mom and everyone knows I’m a mama’s boy, so every time I see them I’m very impressed. These girls have really grown up and it’s stuff I thought I’d never see before. Same thing with Mike and his recovery, we never thought we’d have the relationship we had today. Everyone’s grown and we keep learning about each other because we’re in these houses for an extended period of time; we’re all we have.
In Thursday’s episode, you and Mike have a pretty epic inspirational “quote-off” battle. How’d you guys come up with these?
The funny thing is Mike is now The Inspiration and he’s in recovery so he knows all these quotes from his program and I’ve battled mental health issues my whole life, like anxiety, so I learned those quotes from my own experiences. I wrote a book about it, “Control the Crazy.” We’ve both been on these weird inspirational paths and now that he’s like that we kind of just joke around all the time and just say these quotes to each other.
How does the lifestyle we see on “Family Vacation” compare to your off-camera routine?
I used to go out and party a lot more. I go through phases. I’d party, go to the clubs in New York City, go to the gym during the day. But since I got more involved in health and fitness and became the Keto Guido, I definitely calmed down with the going out … When I’m home I have to count every minute to go to the gym, to catch up on sleep, to catch up on my TV shows that I’m watching. So, I’m basically just like, waking up, going to the gym, going shopping for what I’ll be eating that night, cooking, walking my dog, and then it’s bedtime. My life is very, very boring when I’m not doing the show.