Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Biggest Loser Review, 2009/02/24


Okay, I HATE not having weigh-in results at the end of a show. It totally blows. Can't wait until tonight.

So the pop challenge: mud. First of all, this shouldn't have been a big deal since they all got down and dirty with the mud wrestling last week and had a fantastic time. I particularly loved Kristin's football player raccoon eyes with the mud streaks, and her determined "plop" right into the mud. Hilarious. Also funny was Helen's "Oooh! Oooh!" icky-it's-cold reaction as she slowly lowered herself into it. And finally, after it was all over, we discover the true advantage of being on the Brown team - mud doesn't show on your shirt! It just obscures the Biggest Loser logo...oh hey, another advantage! ;)

However, I was diappointed with the results of the challenge. Of all the teams in the house, I thought Sione and Filipe would be most screwed by a trainer switch, and I was really rooting for Sione to win it. I felt so sorry for them. Watching Sione's face and body language as he handed his muddy blue shirt to Alison and took the black was really saddening. (Tara's reaction to the black shirt, however, that it was "slimming", was pretty funny.) That said, Sione and Filipe (especially Sione) REALLY need to get over the trainer switch or they're gonna be screwed.

As for my reaction to the team changes, I thought Brown's strategy on how to split them up was interesting. Certainly this whole change is going to make voting seriously weird from now on. I also think Mike's going to do great with Jillian. I also think Dane, Mandi and Aubrey will do fine with Bob. It's all going to work out fine. Humans are adaptable. Jillian, however (who was so cool with Sione's disappointment at that first meeting, it was really sweet to see), has now got herself a TREMENDOUSLY strong black team. Bob's at a serious disadvantage here.

And speaking of Bob, he just exacerbated the whole situation. He just compounded the problem for Sione, Filipe, and Helen (Mike, on the other hand, seemed totally cool with being with Jillian), clearly sending them the message: We can't get along without each other. What he should have done was suppress whatever emotional pain he was going through...and LIE. Lie like his life depended on it, to convince his former people that they CAN do it, that it WILL be okay. He was the only guy that could have convinced them of that, and instead, he screwed up large, and just made it worse. Instead, he actually started looking to THEM to help emotionally support HIM, which is so very wrong! Bad Bob. Bad. This is Bob's problem, his weakness - being too involved with the people. I mean, Jillian gets attached, too, but not like that. And I think Jillian knows this about Bob, and uses it to give her an advantage every time.

Generally speaking, I think the team switches send a very important message to people at home, which seems to be a theme this season: it's not about the trainer, it's not about the equipment, it's not about having your teammate with you, it's not about being on a show. At the end of the day, there is only ONE person who can make you work to lose the weight, and that is YOU. The circumstances may be good or bad, but they can't be the reason you do or don't succeed. It's all got to come from inside you.

And what was nice about the overly-schmaltzy, emotional retrospectives of Bob-with-old-team was to see how much smaller Mike has become! That was great.

EXCRUCIATINGLY painful product placement this week. Ugh. Jillian's right, though, and it sucks: the food that is best for you is the food that spoils the quickest. Bleargh. Oh, and Filipe? Hairbands are not a good look for you. Just sayin'.

I don't have too much to say about the challenge - yeah yeah, it was gruelling, it was impressive. It's just that...well, I'm all for the not quitting thing and everything, and I did love the symbolism of working through the awfulness and finishing the challenge and completing what you start and all that great stuff. And hooray for Sione for being the house inspiration to complete the challenge...but, y'know, can we just look at the big picture here? And that is that sleep deprivation is BAD for weight loss. Bad. STOOPID challenge. But hey, did you see Sione's ARMS at one point near the end when he was on the bike? That was MUSCLE, baybee! It was pretty wow. They can flash his arms on my screen again anytime, thanks.

Oh, and Tara? Did you actually sit there on my TV whining about being scared that you won't "look good" to your new team members? Hello?!? Spare me! You're TARA, for the love of gawd! Wake up! NOBODY in the house thinks you're not an asset to your team. Nobody in the FREAKIN VIEWING AUDIENCE ALL AROUND THE WORLD thinks you're a slacker! Please!

Other miscellaneous observations about the challenge:

  • I liked the attempt at trash-talking between Mandi and Helen near the beginning - it was nice to see something that fun and good-natured.
  • Anybody else notice Alison's righteous cardigan at the end of the challenge? I'd knit that.

And best quote of the show:

Aubrey: My ass is on FIRE.
Mandi: Oh, it'll go numb, don't worry.

Tomorrow: (SPOILERS)

The contestants adjust to their newly formed teams and take a quiz about aging and health; after a grueling workout, another contestant is eliminated.

And next week: (again, SPOILERS)

Chef Rocco DiSpirito takes contestants to a restaurant, where they learn to make healthier choices when dining out; contestants compete in a lively cook-off, preparing healthier versions of their favorite meals.

And the week after that: (more SPOILERS)

The team that wins a 24-hour fitness relay is promised 24 hours of luxury, but some contestants are unable to resist temptation; one contestant has it out with the trainer; one contestant is eliminated.

Finally, FYI, the new teams - people marked with an asterisk are those who have switched trainers. Teams marked with a plus sign are those who have been split up from their original partner. Teams marked with a number sign are those whose original partner is no longer in the house.

BLACK (Jillian)

BLUE (Bob)

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