Sunday, May 09, 2010

I feel pretty

With the departure of her father last week, Sunshine is now alone on the ranch. This is a very new experience for her, so things are weird.

Ali breaks in on the contestants' breakfast, which is really a product placement for Multigrain Cheerios. At first it looks like a product placement merely by virtue of showing the product while they're eating, but wait for gets worse. Ali points out that the six of them together have lost 805lbs, all thanks to the Cheerios, of course. (But wait for gets worse.) Ali then announces that it's makeover week, and everyone is thrilled. "Make me prettier!" yells Sam. :) Michael wants his hair gone. He is not alone. :) Limos are going to pick them up to take them shopping, and everybody gets $1,000 to do work with, again, thanks to...the Cheerios people. (I did warn you it was going to get worse.) Sam is especially stoked about this, because he loves clothes and fashion. And a good thing too, because he, like his fellow contestants, is on his own with the shopping thing. Whither Tim Gunn? Guess they couldn't afford him this season. Of course there will be hair and makeup, too, followed by a concert of some kind. Sunshine remarks that she's always gotten so excited for the contestants on makeover week on the show, and she's really excited that this time it's for her. Yay!

Swanky music, swanky clothing shops. Sam really likes looking at the sizes and knowing he can fit in them. He's tired ofdriving tons of miles to get to the nearest Big and Tall store. "This is my new reality, and I love it," he says of the sizes he can just pick out off the rack. Sunshine claims she's forgotten how to shop. Ashley is a bit nervous because she still has 100lbs to go, so this shopping expedition isn't really for her permanent wardrobe. Sunshine tries on something huge. The store doesn't even have her SIZE, she's so much smaller. Hee hee. Good times. In another shop, Daris reflects that he used to wear t-shirts and jeans at farm & ranch supply stores, right next to the tarps. So where he's at now is a totally different world, he has no idea what he's doing. usually all the nice stuff he's ever had was picked out by his mom or sister. Naturally, given a chance to do this himself, he picks out a plaid shirt and jeans. Oi.

But all is not fun and games and slipping into small sizes. Michael, for example, is bummed that after losing a whopping 183lbs, he STILL has to go to a specialty store for big and tall men. He doesn't even get to shop with any of his fellow Losers, and the stuff he likes still doesn't fit. He's very frustrated. I feel really bad for him, that does indeed suck. But Michael, you just have to keep remembering: if you're going to get down from 526lbs to your ideal weight, you can't possibly do that without passing through 343lbs first. Keep on keepin' on, Mike.

Bonus video: Michael's not the only one experiencing disappointment. Koli was thinking that this would be the day he could try anything on and not worry about the size. But it turns out that that hasn't happened. While Sam is capering through the store grabbing anything that catches his eye and looking sizzling in it, none of the pants in the store fit poor Koli. So he's thinking he hasn't done enough. He wants to know he can walk into a store and know he can get anything. He reflects that he is progressing, but he's still got a lot of mental stuff to work through; stuff that will take longer than it'll take to get the weight off. He's had twenty-nine years of beating himself down and doesn't know what it will take to get him to the mental place he wants. :(

Salon time! No Tabitha Coffey of the undead, thank goodness. Instead we have Jonathan Antin, the head judge of Bravo's new show, "Shear Genius". He calls himself the "go-to hair guy". (Clearly, incredibly modest as well.) For Sam, he's feeling the "classic penitentiary look...the handsome version". I don't know what the hell that means, but I'm sure I'll find out. Sunshine is nervous. We see colour applied, locks being clipped, etc. Michael's hoping to walk out of there feeling great. We get funny shots of Michael's hair falling to the ground and the camera shaking with the weight of it all as Jonathan says he's clipping off the pounds. He waxes eloquent about how they're just "raw canvases". Daris is another guy who's (fortunately) ready to shed some hair. Alllll the contestants stop and watch as the curly locks come off. Jonathan reckons he's chopping off about ten inches and asks Daris to consider donating the hair to Locks of Love. That's cool.

With hair, makeup, and clothes all set, the contestants enter the 360-degree mirror room. Sunshine is first. Holy shit, does she look hot. She can't believe it's her. She can't stop smiling. (Duh, honey, you're GORGEOUS!) Behind the mirror are two of her brothers, Jazz and Arece. It's a two-way mirror, so they can see what she looks like, and they're amazed. She screams as the mirror opens and they grab her and lift her up. It's pretty awesome, the sibling bond in that family has always seemed so terrific. Oh, she looks like such a star.

Koli's next. We get flashbacks from 16 weeks previous. He's put himself in really geeky glasses (which DH isn't keen on) and given himself a kind of Poindexter look. (I read an article online somewhere where Sam interviews that Koli doesn't actually need glasses, it's just a "look".) Koli's parents are behind the mirror with a lei to drape around his neck. The lei is traditionally given on occasions of great importance and/or accomplishment, so of course this is very significant for him. He cries to see them and his mom is really delighted. She pats his stomach because the big belly isn't there anymore. She's so happy that he's happy and healthy. Koli's really happy that they're proud - he hasn't had a lot of that for a while.

Ashley is floored at the changes she sees, even though she's elected to go with spandex leggings for this auspicious moment. (QFM.) She's still very large, but there are big, big differences. She feels more sexy and womanly than ever. (She should, her waist-to-hip transition is stunning.) Her sisters are behind the glass flabbergasted at her tiny little waist and neck and gorgeousness, etc. etc. Cue the three-way scream as they're revealed. They assure her that she looks different and great and you can even see her collarbones. They slap her butt as they freak out over her waistline and reduced ass size. And with the three of them in that tiny little mirror room, that is a whole lot of cleavage. :)

Time to see Sam! Ladies, start your engines. Oh, they've given him a niiiiice. goatee. That looks great. His parents are all vorklempt behind the mirror. He gives this fantastic roar when he sees them, and of course his mom puts a lei around his neck.

My younger daughter cries and I go up to settle her. But I don't miss much; mostly ads. When I return, we're onto Daris. And...Ho. Lee. Shit. Wow, does he ever clean up good. He looks completely different! He loves it. I can see more of Cheryl in him now, too. His dad and sister Brandi are there and he's very surprised. He's really missed his family. "What happened to this, it all went away!" exclaims his dad, touching his stomach. Daris is now in size 34 jeans. We see another flashback to Fat Daris, and holy crap, he really is totally different. His dad thinks he's looking good. Daris loves the reaction. DH: "He's going to be in demand!"

Lastly, we have Michael's reveal. Oh, WOW. He's got a slick goatee and a really nice haircut and DH sez: "He's got a bit of Ed Robertson going." Michael's sisters are gobsmacked behind the mirror. Rosangela, who is quite large, wants him to teach her what to do. He says she's missing a lot because she's hiding behind her weight. She doesn't like that she's the bigger sister now, and she's very emotional about the journey she knows she has to take.

Chandeliers. Other fancy lighting. Persian rugs. No chairs. It's like the Sultan's Tent restaurant! "Pull up a pillow," Ali offers to the families as they arrive. She also says that the journey is far from over - they've committed to the rest of their lives, and are celebrating a new outlook on life. Someone named Ashanti has come to give them all a private performance. Sunshine and Ashley are pretty stoked over this. And I'd imagine the guys are particularly stoked, too, because having to sit on the floor enables them to see up her skirt even better. She tells them to always shine no matter how hard it is. DH: "Profound."

She sings.
Okay, she sounds good.

We get montages of the contestants during the music. It's all very emotional. There's a particularly wonderful little clip of Ashley and Sherry from probably about Day One with Ashley turning to her mom and saying, "What happens if I go in there and I can't do it?" Sherry pauses, then turns to Ashley and says, "But what if you go in there and you CAN?" Koli looks like he's thinking really hard and I have to wonder what's going through his head. Maybe he's contemplating the deeper meaning of his life and how maybe he is worth a damn. Or maybe he's trying to peer further up Ashanti's skirt. Who knows.

DH: "Challenge time. And it looks wet."

"It's the Jacob's Ladder to hell!" exclaims Ashley. This is a pretty straightforward challenge - everybody has a Jacob's Ladder suspended over the pool. If they stop climbing, they're in the drink. Last person climbing wins a 1lb advantage at the weigh-in. Sam muses that that means more to him than to anyeone else because he has less to lose. And the first person in the water gets a 1lb disadvantage. Michael rolls his eyes and looks at Daris knowingly.

The problems begin immediately. First, Sunshine tells us, it's faster than she's used to. Secondly, it's all wobbly. Ashley tries to focus on a single point and ignore Ali mentioning that she's behind everybody else. She looks across at her competitors and loses focus really quickly. Good-bye, Ashley. She slaps the water in frustration. She's disgusted that she's out at less than three and a half minutes. But this is good news for Michael, who doesn't have to worry about a 1lb disadvantage this week. He is, however, next to go at about the five minute mark. Susnhine starts getting intimidated being up there with a bunch of boys. Oh, suck it up, sweetie, don't get hung up on chromosomes. Remember Tara pulling the car?

Everybody else lasts way longer than five minutes, and I bet Michael and Ashley are feeling pretty stupid watching them go on and on. Over 40 minutes later, Ashley can't believe it, she doesn't understand how they're doing it. DH points out that Ashley and Michael have the highest BMIs, so it makes sense that they would have had the most trouble with this challenge. Daris points out that a bit of a wrong move on the Jacob's Ladder can hurl you off. Everyone remarks in interviews about how really hard this is. Sunshine gets to the bottom of her ladder but pulls herself up...and then falls off at about 45 minutes. Sam's prety happy about this because it brings him closer to the weigh-in advantage. He believes that Koli would jump off the ladder if it's just the two of them left (I'm sure he's right), so really the two of them just have to beat Daris. For his part, Daris is tired of Grey winning challenges all the time, and is determined to stay on.

Koli gives Sam a pep talk to try and keep him on the ladder. But Sam is genuinely struggling and falls in at 55 minutes. Koli claims not to be tired at all (which I believe, because he looks really strong, but I am amazed at it). At one hour, Daris isn't particularly struggling, either, and predicts this could take a while. He tells Koli he won't judge him if he jumps off. :) They exchange remarks to feel each other out. Koli doesn't really want the prize, but he's feeling good and does want to win. Daris slips down a bit, chides himself for daydreaming and climbs back up near the top. He's visualising his dad and sister's reactions at the makeover and his mom's reaction when he returned home, and it keeps him going. At about two hours they're both starting to struggle. "Would it be considered peeing in the pool if I did it from up here?" asks Daris jokingly. Like, ew, man.

Hey, y'know, if nothing else, they're burning a lot of calories.

Sam sees each rung Koli climbs as him climbing to success. He loves the new Koli. DH: "Maybe a Koli that doesn't need to drive girlfriends away from Sam." Finally, Daris hits the wall, and jumps into the water at two and a half hours. Koli's pretty stoked. He reflects that he doesn't win stuff in his life, this is new, and he did it on his own strength. He's really confident now. Yay!

So later, Bob and Jillian are waiting for the results of the makeovers and they love what they see. "We got Lyle Lovett in the house! You've got a pompadour!" exclaims Bob. "I hope you feel as great as you look," says Jillian. She reflects on the emotional changes, too. Then we get down to business. Ashley explains how the challenge worked. Hey, she's pretty funny sometimes when she relaxes into her storytelling. Bob and Jillian are gobsmacked that the challenge last two and a half hours. They're very impressed. Daris admits that he quit and jumped off, and he's mad at himself for that. Koli pats him on the back as comfort. Bob says that there's a mental thing there that still needs to be worked on. DH believes this means Daris is going to be stuck with Jillian's psychoanalysis today.

Bonus video: Bob comes to hang out with Michael, who breaks out the pants he was wearing when he came to the ranch. Bob actually gets his whole self into ONE LEG of them. Bob thinks this is hilarious and waddles off to show this to Koli. Sam takes pictures, most likely destined for Facebook. Michael reflects on how far he's come. They compare pants then and now and there's a massive difference. Michael looks forward to the moment when he can laugh about the size of his current pants just as much.

Last chance workout begins with Sam getting taped up like he's going into battle. Because this. Is. War. They all do crazy things, like walking with their hands on the treadmill. Ashley stands on one foot on a half-medicine ball while lifting dumbells. Jillian doesn't want her going home without a fight. Ashley struggles on the treadmill, but takes a deep breath and soldiers on. Her speed is 9mph. "Are you going home?!?" Jillian roars as Ashley gets into the zone.

Surprisingly, Bob takes Daris. I guess that does make sense - Daris is one of his special people. They go outside. Bob begins the conversation with "I need to know where your head is right now." He's mad because Daris broke. He wants Daris to get into an "I'm gonna win this" mentality, and doesn't want him tripping up at the 1-yard line, which is where the competition is at the moment. Daris tears up. DH points out that maybe Daris feels that he feels that he's already at his goal, so there's not much left to do, that the fire is gone from his eyes. "I don't think the haircut is doing him any favours," DH reflects. Bob puts Daris through a whole bunch of paces, and day-um, Daris is looking good. Finally Bob gets Daris to do a low crouch for 20 seconds. This is the moment where Daris has to fight for it, but he gives up halfway through. Oh dear, giving up goes against the lesson of the day. So Daris has to try again. Bob starts telling him that he WILL NOT GIVE UP, and in response, up. Bob interviews, though, that he and Jillian couldn't do what they made Daris do today. Finally Daris does the crouch for 20 seconds. Yay. Later, he wipes out on the treadmill, but gets back up again. Ashley watches with amazement. Jillian later advises us that hanging onto the handrails onthe treadmill reduces your bodyfat burning by 20-30%.

Weigh-in. Nobody knows how it's going to go down. Koli's feeling confident, though. And well he should be, since he blows everyone else out of the water.

Milestones achieved:

  • Koli drops under 250lbs
  • Ashley moves from morbidly obese to clinically obese
  • Daris and Sunshine move from obese to overweight
  • Ashley, Sunshine and Michael hit the 35% mark of total loss
  • Daris hits the 40% mark of total loss

It's Sam and Michael below the yellow line, with Sam at the bottom.

Bonus video: This is a scene which took place just prior to the weigh-in. Daris and Ashley are discussing how tough this vote is going to be. Daris thinks Sam is awesome and a great friend, but this is the third time Sam's fallen below, and he's already gotten two extra weeks out of the experience. Enter Michael, who wants to see where their votes are at. Is their outsider alliance still in place? He feels like he let them down, which Ashley denies. He promises to look out for them if they keep him around. Ashley says that she knows neither Grey nor Yellow has her back, and knows that she and Daris would be gone if either of them fell below. She acknowledges that Michael will be big competition at the finale, but she needs him to stick around if she wants to actually make it there herself. She points out that staying together this week will give them the advantage next week.

And indeed, since the votes are split evenly between the Grey/Yellow alliance and the outsiders, it's Sam who gets the boot. He's really happy to be home. And damn, he looks like a rock star. :) His sister Sheri's breath is taken away at the sight of him. He feels love walking into the house. He tells people that he is living up to the potential that he was throwing into the toilet over the last few years. He feels he can do anything he wants.

Some time later, he's at 236lbs, which is just 2lbs less than when he left the ranch. This doesn't bother him, though, because he had already hit his goal weight on the ranch - the only contestant in Biggest Loser history to do so, apparently. So he's done losing weight, he's just maintaining it now. And what a life he's maintaining it for - he now has a new roommate in Los Angeles, which, as anyone who's been following story knows, is Stephanie. They started their relationship in Week 3 on the ranch. They've gone through the transformation together, which means they've been through the worst, and are now coming into their best. That's a nice way to look at it. Steph believes she was chosen to go on the show to save her life, save her mom Patti's life, and meet Sam. For his part, Sam feels that even though he's not going to win any of the money prizes on the show, he already has his prize, every day. Awwww. They work out together. "I have a case of the Sams," Stephanie tells us. For his part, Sam is happy as a pig in shit. They run romantically on the beach together and everything. His new goal is to help Stephanie reach her goal weight.

Next week: (SPOILERS)

Look for these potential milestones:

  • Daris could drop under 200lbs
  • Sunshine could drop under 175lbs
  • Sunshine could hit the 100lb mark of total loss
  • Michael could hit the 200lb mark of total loss
  • Koli could hit the 40% mark of total loss

Preview video: Michael is still bitter about being large despite his massive weight drop, and he goes on a bit of a rampage in the gym as he lets out his feelings about that. Bob vows to not let Michael forget about how far he's come. Another downer comes in the form of Erik, Season Three winner, who's gained a whole lot of his weight back. We also find out that this week's elimination will be automatic - lowest percentage of weight loss automatically sends you home.

TV Guide: Quarterback Tony Romo takes the contestants on a hike; past winners Helen Phillips and Erik Chopin discuss the challenges of keeping weight off away from the ranch. Also: Dr. Huizenga offers health updates; the players race over hills of sand while carrying the amount of weight they've lost; Bob and Jillian review videos of the contestants' weight-loss journeys; and the final four are determined at the weigh-in.

Week after next: The players train for a marathon at home and must work to stay on track while away from the ranch. During the race, the contestants receive support from former players and family members. Later, Bob and Jillian hold last-chance workouts before the weigh-in, which determines who's moving on to the final round.


# This wk % Overall % This wk lbs Overall lbs BMI
1 Koli (5.79) Daris (40.75) Koli (15) Michael (192) Sunshine (28.7)
2 Sunshine (4.81) Koli (39.45) Ashley (10) Koli (159) Sam (29.0)
3 Daris (4.21) Michael (36.50) Daris, Michael, Sunshine (9) Ashley, Daris (141) Daris (29.4)
4 Ashley (4.03) Ashley (36.36) Koli (32.2)
5 Michael (2.62) Sam (36.02) Sam (134) Ashley (39.6)
6 Sam (0.83) Sunshine (35.27) Sam (2) Sunshine (97) Michael (41.7)

No comments: