Let the rain fall down — and stir the pot! Laguna Beach alum Alex Murrel broke down her high school love triangle with Jason Wahler and Jessica Smith, teasing that it wasn’t as real as viewers thought.
“It was very contrived. They knew that there was a storylines and they built upon those and timelines were split and cut apart,” Murrel, 35, exclusively told Us Weekly on November 1, noting that the same went for Kristin Cavallari, Stephen Colletti and Lauren Conrad’s onscreen drama during season 1. “Because it was shot like a soap opera pretty much, it was hard for viewers to, like, understand if it was reality or real.”
Once the “Let the Journey Begin” podcast cohost and Smith called it quits on their romance, he quickly moved on with Murrel, but the marketing guru told Us the timeline wasn’t exactly what it appeared.
“It just kind of blurred those lines ’cause [the show] was the first of its kind,” Murrel said while promoting Laguna Beach‘s Netflix debut. “There was those [love triangle] story lines [and] things happened, but I think, like, with the editing, it really kind of piecemeal things together that maybe weren’t, like, a hundred percent.”
Following the show, which included a third season that aired in 2006, the teens grew up and found love outside of reality TV.
Murrel married Kyle Johnson in October 2014. The couple share three sons: Levi, 6, Kase, 4, and Rome, 19 months. Jason, for his part, wed Ashley Wahler (née Slack) in October 2013. The twosome share daughter Delilah, 5, and son Wyatt, 16 months.
Smith, who was one of Cavallari’s best friends on seasons 1 and 2 of the MTV show, currently lives in Texas with her husband and their four kids.
Looking back on the childhood drama, Murrel confessed that she and Jason don’t often talk about their brief fling, but they do stay in touch.
“I love Jason’s wife, Ashley. I mean, Jason and I maybe, like — and this is where it can be contrived — we, like, dated for … [it was a] high school relationship,” the Newport Beach, California, resident told Us earlier this month. “It was, like, a week or two and then that got piecemealed.”
Murrel concluded: “We were friends first, always, and then friends after. We’re married [and have] kids [so] there’s no reason to talk about any of that anyway. We laugh about it, that’s for sure.”
Laguna Beach seasons 1 and 2 hit Netflix on Friday, November 11.
With reporting by Christina Garibaldi