Wednesday, April 14, 2010


So brilliant me over here started taping on the wrong channel before zipping upstairs to continue putting the kids to bed. Captured about 10 minutes of NCIS before DH alerted me to the fact that he thought I wasn't taping the right thing. Curses! At least I'm able to start near the beginning of the week with a...

Bonus video: Andrea is delighted to have been chosen to stay in the house. Koli says it's because Drea needs to be here and she had a bad week, evn though Drea is the bigger threat. We also get a clip from last week's elimination that was not aired where Melissa turns to Andrea and says that she doesn't think Drea an dAshley did their best that week. She also slams Drea for eating breakfast in front of the TV, saying that doing so is just "setting yourself up for failure". Without changing one's lifestyle, she admonishes everyone, returning to the outside world means that you're just going to be fat again. But back into the post-elimination moment, O'Neal says that's ridiculous. Koli goes on to say that the players in the house represent an awesome group and he loves all of them. (Oh sure, he can say that now that he's gotten rid of Stepanie and Melissa.) He loves being around people who want him to succeed, and getting rid of the negativity that is Melissa just makes everything better because now people don't have to worry about watching their backs. I agree with him. Koli also goes on to say that he doesn't like manipulation and deceit, and wants to win honestly. (I wonder what he thinks what he did to Steph was?)

My tape starts in the middle of some kind of pop challenge where people are holding up trays with one hand. The trays are hinged on one side to a post, and they have coins on them. Quarters, apparently. DH fills me in on a bit of what's going on - apparently each contestant got to pick how many quarters to put on their tray, and each quarter on your tray will translate into $10 dollars won if you're the last person holding up your tray. As my tape cuts in, only Drea, Sunshine and Michael are left, and Drea drops out. Sunshine is playing for $650, and Michael is playing for $1,000. Sunshine struggles really, really hard. Her hand is seriously shaking, she's drenched with sweat and tears are rolling down her face. Also, O'Neal seems to be putting a lot of pressure on her here to win. As she pushes quarters back into the centre of the tray(at O'Neal's urging), she loses her hold and the quarters crash to the ground. Michael has won his $1K, although as he hears Sunshine's feeble whimpers, he doesn't look too thrilled. He then gives Sunshine a really beautiful and tender embrace, wiping away her tears and saying, "Don't cry, you were strong, okay? Beautiful, I love you. You put up a big fight," plus some other murmured stuff I couldn't catch but which sounded like it was really sweet. The way he looked at, spoke to and held her is verrrry interesting! Makes me wonder if there's something-something happening there?

(Yes, I'm seeing potential relationships everywhere. So shoot me.)

But the good news is not over yet for Michael - because he gave 100% by putting 100 quarters on his tray, Total (the provider of the prize) is doubling his winnings to give him $2,000. Awesome! And it gets better - Total feels Sunshine did so well, too, that she is going to get the $650 she was playing for! That's great!

Speaking of money, though, there's a surprise - Suze Orman is visiting the house. I find her super-irritating, so this is not going to be a pleasant segment for me. Michael is nervous. Suze, with her oversized coat, too-dark tan, over-enunciated words, and usual self-glorification, interviews that she's on the show today because health and wealth are connected. She talks to the contestants about how heavy debt can feel. Winning the competition means taking responsibility for the financial debt they've all created. (Actually, no, winning the competition means not having to WORRY about all the financial debt you've created, since the prize is a quarter million dollars.) Apparently, last season, she looked at the financial situations of the contestants and predicted that Danny would be the winner because his FICO credit score was the highest. I have no idea what a good credit rating has to do with your ability to exercise hard and count calories, but in Suze's mind, clearly the two things are connected.

As we go to commercial, Bob encourages people to start their own office Biggest Loser competition going.

Suze then brings out Danny, last season's Biggest Loser! Everyone's very excited, and I'm very glad to see him, too. He still looks fantastic. Danny talks to the contestants about how he was $40,000 in debt with credit cards before coming on the show, and compares putting off his debt problem to the way he put off his weight problems. I think he's wearing eyeliner, it's very distracting.

However, Suze is not ready to leave the spotlight, and keeps talking. She wants the players to take full responsibility for their lives. Taking responsibility = winning. She advises anyone with debt already in collections who wants to settle to call their debtors. She is "sure" that if they offer about 40-50% of what they owe, the debtors will settle it with them. She offers no advice, however, on what to do if you don't have that 40-50% to offer. We also find out that Michael has so much debt he can't even count it, and doesn't know what to do to get out of the spiral he's in. Suze doesn't give him any advice about that, although she does say it can't possibly be as bad a burden as being 300lbs overweight, which he's now fixing. Danny follows this up by saying that the debt is something he has to deal with, just like he's dealing with the weight. (I'm not sure how one "deals" with debt when one doesn't have any money, but whatever.) Suze also avoids giving Michael advice by asking who in the house counts their calories. Sunshine and Michael do, sure, but not Koli, who looks embarrassed about admitting it. Busted! Suze originally thought the winner of the competition would be Koli, but hearing that he doesn't count calories has made her drop him like a hot potato. Instead, she taps Sunshine, who's pretty jazzed about that. Koli, who wants to be like Danny, is just going to have to start counting calories if he wants that confetti that he's obsessed with.

Suze then, mercifully, leaves, so Danny takes everybody to work out!

Bob and Jillian are really happy to see Danny. Jillian's particularly proud. "Hi, Skinny!" she exclaims.

"Oklahoma is in the HOUSE!" Bob pronounces as we see Danny and Daris working out together. Danny calls Daris a machine, and confesses that he forgot how hard the ranch is. There's then a pretty intense moment between Daris and Bob. Bob is very concerned and doesn't want Daris to have any stress. This kind of comes out of nowhere with no background or explanation, so...moving on...

Koli and Sunshine work out together. Bob tells us that these two are the most competitive in the house. It's indeed a pretty powerful sight. Koli is still obsessing about confetti. Sunshine: "I didn't know they do that for the at-home winner." Oh, SNAP, girl!!! :D

We then have a Danny-and-Drea moment. She says that she didn't think she deserved to be in the final four until just recently. Danny knows where she's coming from. He came to the show for his kids, but eventually started wanting to do it for himself, and that's when he took off. This resonates for Drea.

There's lots of running on treadmills, and Michael REALLY looks like he's working, good for him. Victoria grabs the handlebars and incurs Jillian's wrath. Thus we begin a series of profiles on how Victoria is struggling emotionally in the house. Jillian says she's so far behind psychologically, which is really hurting her in the gym - the other contestants had their 'aha' moments in week three, and Vicky is still aha-less in week thirteen. So Jillian's focus is on giving Vicky some breakthroughs. You know what that means - insults! Accusations! Yelling! Beatings! Jillian accuses Vicky of having an "everything's perfect" facade. What's stopping her, Jillian asks. Vicky has no answer, so...she gets to run while she comes up with a good one. Vicky interviews that she just doesn't know why she gained so much weight, but is looking forward to figuring it out.

Bonus video: Danny concentrates on Victoria, who seems lost and confused. He advises her to take advantage of things and change herself, instead of simply losing the weight. He says that what got him to his win was realising things about imself. He advises her that it may not actually be just one single answer. "Does it get any easier?" she asks him. "Yeah," he replies, "it does." He loves running now, which is way easier now that the weight is off. Vicky looks really happy to hear about how it truly is going to get better. "Win this game by winning yourself back. That's the way you win it," Danny says.


We continue the Vicky focus by seeing her telling Sam she doesn't know why she got so big. Sam says he can relate, that's how he was when he got to the ranch. He advises her that if she doesn't get anything out of the ranch experience emotionally, she's missed the point. Weight is fluid - it goes away and comes back, unless you figure out what's going on mentally.


Ali shows up in rain gear, looking - as Drea notes - very cute. She announces today's challenge, after which, two people are going to own brand-new cars. This of course is the American dream, so everyone loses their minds. Mazda is our automotive sponsor today, and two 2010 Mazda-3s are up for garbs. "TWO cars!" flips out Michael. Ali sells us on the vehicles by expounding their features. After she's done shilling, we hear how the challenge will actually work: on the hill outside are seven giant floating balloons, tethered by rope to the ground. Along the rope of each balloon are 20 keys, for a total of 140 keys. Two of them start one of the cars. Keys can only be brought back one at a time. And did we mention it's pouring rain? And didn't Benjamin Franklin do this with kites?

Sam tells us that it was so wet and muddy during the challenge that he wished he had an ark. He and Drea are the first ones back with their keys. They try them in the ignitions...and now the car seats are all wet! Man, I hope interior detailing comes with these free cars, because you know that as the challenge continues there will end up being mud on the seats, too. Oh, and then the wind picks up. This does not make grabbing the keys easy.

Continually running up a hill to grab a key that doesn't make a car start begins to grate on the contestants. Sunshine gets to the point where she believes she can "feel the energy" of the keys. (She can't.) O'Neal reveals that if he wins, he's giving the car to Sunshine. Drea tells us that she's desperate to win a car because what she owns now is more like a go-cart than an actual car, which doesn't work well as she also owns a 90lb dog. Incredibly, she then manages to start a car! Much screaming ensues. She and Michael jump-hug together in triumph. (That's pretty unselfish of Michael to be so happy for her.) DH mentions that he would've been happy simply to not have to venture back out in the rain anymore.

Everyone keeps trying to find the key that starts the other car, but it just isn't showing up. It takes a ton more tries, with very few keys remaining on the balloon strings, before O'Neal finally hits the jackpot. Sunshine, hearing the engine and seeing her dad at the wheel, runs back to the garage full-tilt, screaming her head off. "This is your car! This is YOUR car!" O'Neal yells back gleefully. She run-hugs into him so hard I think he's going to go down - but he's a rock. Good times!

For the next workout, Bob and Jillian divvy everyone up. Jillian's plan is to run Victoria through the exact same thing she did the previous day. But first she shills Body Buggs for a bit. Vicky is very unimpressed when Jillian announces she has to do five sprints with every single person on the treadmills, for a total of thirty sprints. Off she goes.

Meanwhile, Bob talks to Drea about the breakthrough moment she had last week. Drea tells him that she didn't want to touch people when she was fat, because she didn't want others touching her and going all, "Ew!" Bob asks how come, if she hated being fat so much, it took coming on the Biggest Loser to make a change? Drea tells him it's because she's really good at putting things off, but it's huge that she can hug people now. All this Drea focus is making me think she's going to be the one who's toast this week.

By this point, Victoria is wiped. Jillian compounds the problem by announcing that she has to do five more sprints than originally stipulated. But Vicky pushes through and does it, looking pretty strong, too! After which, Jillian says they have to box. But first, time for a chin wag. Jillian tells Victoria how far she's come from yesterday, to do 35 sprints so quickly. However, Vicky is still acting like the victim of a Greek tragedy, like she's being punished. Also, Jillian still doesn't know why Vicky got so heavy in the first place. Finally we get a few answers. Victoria says she sometimes feels like she's not worth being the best, that she isn't worth good things in general. When Jillian asks where else she's felt "not good enough", Vicky says in friendships and in being a daughter. Why? Because she felt like her parents should have a more beautiful child. This stuns me, because fat or thin, Vicky is a very pretty person. So I have to wonder where this all came from? We don't find out. But Jillian does tell Victoria that she is as deserving and special and beautiful as anyone else on the planet. She then tells us that on the show, you have to figure out the root of your self-destructive behaviour. Vicky appears to be starting to do this. They hug it out.

Meanwhile, in order for Vicky and Jillian to have all this precious private time together, Bob has taken everyone else to work out in the mud. Doing pushups in this is of course bound to get messy, and eventually the contestants all drag each other and Bob through the muck. "There is so much payback in this bitch right now!" exclaims Bob as he pulls mud out of his undies. The best is yet to come, however. When Vicky and Jillian are done with their 'moment', Jillian opens the gym doors to discover all the mud-sloshing, and Bob tells her that she's next. At first, Jillian doesn't take this seriously, but then realises that she is indeed in for a soaking and gets the most HILARIOUS 'oh shit' look on her face before turning and fleeing. We are talking SERIOUS fleeing, y'all. Ripping off her jacket as she goes because it probably cost her a pretty penny and she doesn't want it to get ruined.

DH: "Jillian Michaels! How fast can you run! You have made them strong, and you have made them fit...and now that's gonna put your ass in a sling!"

Needless to say, she is chased down and given a right royal muddification. They even smush a bunch of mud in her hair. "My extensions!" quips DH. :D Jillian swears that there will be revenge at the last chance workout. "I'll have you know that I hold a grudge!" she vows as she limps away from the mudfield.

And speaking of the last-chance workout, here it is. Bob warns everyone that five of the nine people left are NOT going to be in the final four, so they all have to push themselves accordingly. Jillian, however, doesn't care about any of that game crap, she just wants sweet revenge. It's not just a generic butt-kicking today, boy howdy. Sunshine's attitude is "bring it on", she just wants to get the most out of the workout. (Good for her.) Jillian says, "I beat them and beat them until the pain of the mud went away." It's pretty hilarious stuff. And everyone looks good and strong. Michael runs for 5K, to general applause, but that's not good enough for Bob, who makes him go on to do a full five miles. And Michael DOES IT! Bob is impressed. So am I.

Bonus video: O'Neal has been listening to Bob, and realises that his odds of being in the final four are worse than fifty-fifty. So he and Sunshine talk about how they can both get in there. They both really believe they can do it. O'Neal announces, "I'm here for one purpose - that's to get healthy, lose weight, and US go to the final four." O'Neal honey, I love ya, but that's THREE purposes. Sunshine is glad to see her dad getting the same kind of tunnel vision that she found last week.

We then go to weigh-in. Drea is feeling confident. Koli is also expecting a good number because he was much better with his food this week. (I guess he started counting calories.) Michael has so much confidence that he runs up the steps to the scale. Alas, he has a ridiculous ponytail that ruins the moment for me. Amazingly, I think I prefer the 'fro for him.

Milestones achieved:

  • Koli drops below 275lbs
  • Andrea drops below 225lbs
  • Andrea hits the 75lb mark of total loss
  • Victoria goes from morbidly obese to clinically obese
  • Andrea moves from clinically obese to obese
  • Andrea and Victoria hit the 25% mark of total loss
  • Ashley, Sunshine and Michael hit the 30% mark of total loss

When it's all over, it's Sam and Drea below the yellow line, Sam having lost no weight at all, and Drea having her second bad week in a row, about which she is, understandably, totally pissed (although I wasn't too pleased to hear her saying that Bob and Jillian could "contest" to the fact that she'd worked hard...sweetie, it's "ATtest"). Back in the house, Sam is hilarious. He refers to the strategy of badmouthing his fellow yellow liner as "going the Melissa route". I heart him. The house ends up voting out Drea. Personally, I think this is a poor choice. Drea needs to be in the house more, and Sam is a bigger threat in challenges. I know everyone loves Sam and everything, but come on. Still, we say goodbye to Drea. Off she goes, driving her new car. :) Her dad Darrell is excited to see her, and DH is excited to see that Darrell now has a neck. We both notice that there are a lot of obese people in that group of family and friends. They all go crazy when they hear about the car win.

Some time later, we find that walking her dog is no longer a chore for Andrea. Also, she gets a DVD from Bob which shows herself on day one talking to herself in the future. She knows she's come a long way, but she's not finished. I agree, it's clear she still has a lot more weight to lose, although her face looks thinner. She's also now a spin instructor, and we watch her do her stuff. Darrell, who takes her class, thinks she has a real knack for it. She plans on becoming a certified personal trainer focusing on children with special needs.

Next week (SPOILERS)

Look for the following potential milestones:

  • O'Neal could drop below 275lbs
  • Sam could drop below 250lbs
  • Daris could drop below 225lbs
  • Daris and Sam could hit the 125lb mark of total loss
  • Koli could move from clinically obese to obese
  • Sam could move from obese to overweight
  • O'Neal could hit the 30% mark of total loss
  • Daris and Koli could hit the 35% mark of total loss

The contestants eat at a buffet featuring a variety of foods. The player who consumes the most calories wins the sole vote at elimination. Elsewhere, Gabrielle Reece works out on the beach with the players; a building-block challenge tests the gang's climbing skills; Dr. Huizenga reveals updated health scores; and a player receives bad news before the weigh-in

(Remember that the bad news is going to be that one of the male contestants loses a brother, as tweeted in early February by Jillian. The remaining male contestants are Daris, Koli, Michael, O'Neal, and Sam. I don't want any of them to go through this, but if anyone has to, I'm hoping it's O'Neal, because he's 51, so his brother would be old enough to have lived a fair bit of life instead of dying tragically young. The other guys, however, are all young so their brothers probably are too: Daris is 25, Koli is 29, Michael is 30, and Sam is 24. But no matter what, it's going to suck large.)

Week after next: The remaining seven contestants head to Dallas to inspire Texans to live healthier lives; a wild challenge involves wrangling calves; the elimination leaves one player feeling lonely.

(TEXAS?!? Lordy, I hope this doesn't mean we'll be seeing Melissa again.)


# This wk % Overall % This wk lbs Overall lbs BMI
1 Daris (3.00) Daris (34.68) Michael (9) Michael (163) Sam (30.7)
2 Michael (2.42) Koli (33.00) Daris (7) Koli (133) Sunshine (31.0)
3 Ashley (2.27) Sam (32.26) Ashley, Koli (6) Daris, Sam (120) Daris (32.4)
4 Koli (2.17) Ashley (31.02) Andrea (34.8)
5 Victoria (1.84) Michael (30.99) O'Neal, Victoria (5) Ashley (116) Koli (35.6)
6 O'Neal (1.77) Sunshine (30.18) O'Neal (111) O'Neal (38.8)
7 Sunshine (1.54) O'Neal (28.53) Andrea, Sunshine (3) Vicky (91) Vicky (39.4)
8 Andrea (1.33) Andrea (25.50) Sunshine (83) Ashley (42.9)
9 Sam (0.00) Victoria (25.42) Sam (0) Andrea (76) Michael (45.4)

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