As much as Joelle is whiny, childish, dependent, lazy, and BS-ing, I totally feel like she's getting far more of a bum rap here than she deserves. Carla ganged up on her and bullied her throughout the time at home, and with very little justification, as far as I'm concerned. Who was the person with the smallest percentage of weight loss in week one? Carla. Who consumed over 2700 calories at the temptation this week while her partner did a really good job of resisting? Carla. Who accused her partner of not sweating enough when there wasn't a drop of the salty stuff marring her own damn shirt? Carla. I mean, yes, there's a lot of justification for portraying Joelle as a wash-up, but NONE for portraying Carla as a righteous martyr. And Bob did NOTHING to stop the dysfunctional crap, and even backed it up a little! They are seriously too much for him to handle, he had no control there. Carla was spouting meaningless jibberish which was completely ineffectual because you could actually SEE Joelle shutting down and retreating into herself, stopping all listening entirely. (Which was really sad, because a few times she really started doing some mature communication - not that "I have vision" crap, but the calm "You're mad at me" bit. Carla just WAS NOT LISTENING, she just wanted to yell and rant and yell some more, not solving a single damn thing. Geez, even if Joelle had shouted her undying commitment from the rooftops I don't think Carla would have let up.) I mean, shit, how do you expect someone to react when you're dumping all over her like that ALL THE FRICKIN' TIME? Sir yes sir? The whole thing just made me mad. The both of them each think they're the centre of the universe.
Other things that made me unhappy:
- Dave. Like, seriously, what the HELL is he doing? Does he take this seriously at all? While Dan is working his ass off at the ranch, totally devoted to saving his life, inspiring the crap out of everybody else in the house? That boy needs to find some self-control. His weigh-in in three weeks is going to be painful.
- Jillian's team's duplicity. I mean, okay, there are two very good reasons for them to have voted for Damien. Firstly, compassion/bigger picture: Damien has Nicole at home, who is completely fired up about this process and so he's going to manage to do well, whereas Joelle needs so badly to stay in the program - partly so that Carla won't murder her if she goes back, and partly because she has such a serious need for a breakthrough, and she sure as hell isn't going to get it at home with her beeyotch of a partner. Secondly, voting off the stronger member of the opposing team is just good sense, gameplay-wise. HOWEVER...for them to make Bob's team THINK they were going to vote unanimously against Joelle and then turn it around in the elimination room? Not. Cool. It's only going to foster bad feelings between the two teams (did you see Ron's face when Blaine revealed the black team's vote?), which is the kind of crap I think I can safely say the viewing audience for this show is really sick of seeing. Ten bucks says this was the brainchild of Blaine and Tara.
- Mandi needs to suck it up. There are five other contestants on the ranch who are away from their kids, too (some with little ones - Blaine's going to miss his fourth child's BIRTH, for heaven's sakes and you don't see him wiping away tears every five minutes), and she's the only one who seems to be letting it drag her down.
- But Mandi breaking her styrofoam bar in the challenge was really sad. She was doing so well, looked fresher than anybody else, I really thought she was going to wipe the floor with the rest of them; she just messed up her timing. That sucked.
- Carla's! Utter! Agony! Every! Time! She! Presses! Weight! Oh, Jesus have mercy! She's a walking stereotype.
- If I hear ONE MORE CONTESTANT in the interviews talking about how it's not just about them, it's about their partner at home? Well, duh!!! We get it.
- Blaine, can we cut it out with the "don't wanna lose to a girl" crap? It's still a piss-off, even if you're kidding.
But, things that made me happy:
- How about Damien's reaction when Nicole showed up on the screen? Loved it! He was so totally into her! Which was really good to see, because up until this point he seemed pretty emotionless about a lot of stuff.
- How about that Kristin and the challenge? I was absolutely elated to see how well she did!!! Total surprise. She blew away all expectations. I really wish Tara had just let her take it. I'm convinced Tara waterloaded last week, so she knew she was going to post a good number this week, and could have just let Kristin have the glory. However, I guess you always have to do your very best in these things, so I guess it did have to go the way it did. (Although hearing that Tara kept hydrated by throwing up in her own mouth was way more information than I needed to know. And can we please stop showing Tara throwing up on the screen? I'd like to ditch the association between models and vomiting, thanks.) I'm sorry Kristin was so down about it though, she should be ferociously proud of her accomplishment. I think Cathy is going to completely plotz at how hard Kristin rocked the challenge when she sees this episode.
- How about that cute expression of surprise on Dan's face when he saw that 406 on the scale? I loved it. He could go below 400 next week - I'm so looking forward to it.
- We finally got to see a freakin' interview with Mike! He has been totally underprofiled in the show so far, and it's seemed like he's really in the shadow of his dad (who seems like a great guy, just with a big personality). It was really nice to start to get a sense of him.
- Blaine's and Ron's meetings with Dr. H. Nice to see. And sending the message that obesity hits you in the WALLET - that's a message America might actually listen to, especially now. Well done.
- I was totally cheering for Mike and Helen during the last chance workout. Way to go, guys.
All in all, though, the Week 3 show can't even hope to touch the Week 2 show for heartwarmingness and just plain old good TV. Hopefully next week will be an improvement.