1. Arts & Entertainment

Floribama Shore recap: The one where Nilsa gets arrested

It’s still as confusing now as it was when the news broke in July.
The cast of "Floribama Shore." Season 3, which was shot in Pinellas County, premieres in November. [Courtesy of MTV]
The cast of "Floribama Shore." Season 3, which was shot in Pinellas County, premieres in November. [Courtesy of MTV]
Published Jan. 24
Updated Jan. 24


Ten years have passed since Papa Butts swore a blood oath to never again conjure the evil potion, but this is a dark time in the realm of Floribama. Gus and Jeremiah’s once unshakable bromance has been torn asunder by the insolent personal trainer, Cole. Then there was the sushi incident.

And so, Papa Butts, oath be damned, knows what he must do.

He solemnly assembles the tinctures and tonics ⁠— a distilled spirit of formidable strength, and the essence of sweet citrus ⁠— and dumps them into his cauldron with great ceremony. And as that grain alcohol swirls together with that entire container of powdered pink lemonade inside that five-gallon plastic cooler, the impish Kirk and the trickster Codi dance in the shadows cast by the flames. (Disclaimer: There were no actual flames, because Everclear is flammable).

“Koo-ka-poo. Koo-ka-poo," goes the minions’ incantation.

All partake in the kookapoo, and also a great feast at the Butts’ home, which includes beans that are not only “fire,” but also “bangin'.” Candace’s, Jeremiah’s and Gus’ parents come over, too, and it was genuinely nice to see everyone enjoying time with their families, blood and otherwise.

And, at the end of the party, Gus and Jeremiah “squash” their feud, and hug it out, because “at the end of the day,” yadda, yadda, yadda. Also we learn that Jeremiah’s dad was a stripper who met his mother at a male revue. Thus ends the tale of kookapoo.

With everything back to normal, the crew returns to St. Pete Beach from the Butts’ home in South Carolina and is reunited with Kortni, who is almost completely healed from her tonsillectomy. Mostly though, she’s back in St. Pete because her ex-boyfriend was just released from jail and it seems safer there.

There’s a budding romance between Jeremiah and Mattie, who has officially joined the house for the rest of the summer. Jeremiah seems to think this means that he has to break up with Kristen, the woman from Ferg’s who he hung out with a couple of times. When Jeremiah calls on the gator phone, Kristen seems fairly confused about how she is being broken up with by someone she wasn’t dating.

But, as we are reminded by Aimee once again, Jeremiah was home schooled, and so essentially has the social skills of a thawed-out cave man. (Note to self: Encino Man reboot with Jeremiah in the Brendan Fraser role, and Millie Bobby Brown as the Pauly Shore part? Is America ready?)

After a grilling mishap that sets a propane tank on fire at the beach house, and watching Fourth of July fireworks on the beach, the crew heads out to 260 First in downtown St. Pete. Kortni’s decision to wear a big T-shirt and running shorts to the club seems odd at first, but when she begins to whip her ponytail around dangerously, you realize that athleisure wear was a necessary concession for this type of violent movement.

And then, the big moment, which we’ve known was coming since July when news broke that Nilsa was arrested during filming.

Here’s what we saw in the final edit of the show: Nilsa was feeling rejected by Gus, and wondered aloud what she had to do to get some attention. She walked out on the balcony, shouted down to a cop on a horse and lifted up her shirt. The cops ordered her down and took her ID.

The next time we see Nilsa, though, she’s in the back of one of the show’s “cabs," with a very nervous looking producer in the front seat telling her to calm down. A police officer tells her everything is fine, she’s free to go. Then she starts screaming, leans back in the seat and kicks out the rear window of the minivan. An officer, understandably pissed, gets her out of the minivan and tells her she’s under arrest.

Why did she freak out? Was something edited out? What did we miss? For her part, Nilsa told the Tampa Bay Times in November that “I simply did not want to leave the bar.”

The police reports from the arrest don’t clarify much more. Three different officers wrote that Nilsa was calm and even smiling and joking with them until she got into the back of the cab, although one officer seemed momentarily concerned that Nilsa was being held captive by the show. From his report:

While standing there Nilsa began speaking with me, and I advised her to stay relaxed and understand she was not in handcuffs and officers would work with her. “Officer I appreciate you trying to help, but if it gets me kicked off the show take me to jail.” I asked Nilsa if everything was ok and if she needed me to help her with anything. I also explained to her there would be a better way to get off the show then go to jail. Nilsa stated, “Forget I said anything, I did not mean that.” I then stated to Nilsa if she needed help, to not hesitate to contact the police.

Nilsa was charged with two misdemeanors, disorderly conduct and “exposure of sexual organs.” The files on her court case were not immediately available, but records indicate she may have entered some kind of pre-trial diversionary program.

Pinellas County mug shot of Nilsa Anderson, 25, a star on MTV's Floribama Shore. Anderson was arrested July 6, 2019 by St. Petersburg police after allegedly kicking out a car window. [Pinellas County]

In the world of the show, Nilsa’s arrest was this week’s cliffhanger. Next week: Can her drunk friends figure out how to bail her out?

P.S. I didn’t explain this at the beginning, but this is a recap of two separate episodes combined into one. The first one with the kookapoo aired a week ago.

Other local stuff spotted: Baggage claim at Tampa International Airport.

Related: Every Floribama Shore episode so far, recapped


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