The early 2000s was a time that was filled with plenty of cult reality TV shows – from The Hills and its predecessor Laguna Beach, to the early days of Keeping up with the Kardashians – but there wasn't really anything on the small screen that came close to being as iconic (in our opinion, anyway) as the riches-to-rags 'buddy comedy' reality series The Simple Life.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the TV show – starring heiresses and original nepo babies Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie – was an immediate success. Hilton and Richie, childhood pals, had an instant knack for cheeky one-liners, madcap charm and near-perfect comedic timing – even when things got testy between the two over the course of the show's five seasons.
Whether infiltrating a quintessential Arkansas household, working as mechanics at an auto-repair shop, or setting up shop at an unoccupied summer camp in Malibu, the duo were up for almost anything it seemed.
Two decades later, The Simple Life has carved out prime real estate for itself in the pantheon of reality television history, and has permanently cemented both Hilton and Richie's place as icons of the genre. They've both gone on to have mega success in their careers – Hilton about to have her memoir adapted by A24 for a television series, and Richie at the helm of her own fashion brand called House of Harlow since 2008. And they've inspired plenty of knock-offs and reboots attempting to recapture the same fish-out-of-water formula – including a spin-off featuring Kelly Osbourne and Kimberly Stewart that apparently never made it to air.
To celebrate and acknowledge the show's milestone anniversary this year, we here at RUSSH thought it would be a good time to take a look back at some of the dynamic duo's most quote-able moments and frenetic on-screen antics from all five seasons of The Simple Life. See our round-up, below.