Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Drama Club

Sunrise on the ranch, plus inspiring chamber music. Oh, and cupcakes. Hundreds of them. Why deary me, it must be a temptation!

Adam is unmoved. He's not a cupcake guy. But Burgandy is tempted by the very smell. Apparently when you get four hundred cupcakes all in the same room, it is an olfactory assault.

However, forget about basking in the cupcakey goodness, because Ali reveals that TWO (count 'em) people are going home this week. Yes, this week there will be a RED LINE. And as anyone who's been watching the past few seasons knows, anyone below the red line is automatically eliminated without any challenge or vote to give them the slimmest possibility of reprieve. But today's temptation could pull your ass out of the fire! There is one cupcake out here with the Biggest Loser logo on it. Finding that cupcake means you can choose to have a 1lb advantage at the weigh-in. BUT, for every week you keep the logo and choose not to use it, the advantage increases by another pound the following week. So, for example, Ali tells us, if you held onto the logo for eight weeks, you could cash it in for an eight-pound advantage. So, that's huge. Suddenly, Adam is a cupcake guy.

But it's not just blind chance. If you eat a cupcake and don't find the logo, you will get a clue as to where the winning cupcake actually is. Rick, Adam, Jesse and Elizabeth all play. Rick goes for a small one on the first shot to minimize calorie consumption. Elizabeth had no such strategy and stuffed a big one in her mouth. Lisa's strategy was to just stay away from the whole damn mess. Jesse gets "lapped" in cupcakes by Adam and Rick and wishes he'd never started. Rick eventually gets one more clue than Adam, a clue which REALLY narrows it down, but Adam picks the right cupcake first and gets the advantage. He feels great - this on top of his work ethic puts him in a really good position. The price, however, was 1350 bad calories consumed. He says it's no big deal because he'll just burn an extra 1350 calories tonight. Whispers break out behind his back and someone calls him "cocky". (I don't think it was cocky myself, I thought it was just good sense.)

Ali notes that Frado and Brendan didn't play, and Brendan says he didn't want a target on his back for a prize that wouldn't pay off for a while. Adam reflects that he didn't realise about the becoming a target thing. Oh, well!

Elizabeth is tearful and regrets participating. She's also terrified of the red line and going home. She's trying to work hard but doesn't feel any change. Brendan, standing behind her, comforts her with a bit of a back rub. This makes me realise that what Elizabeth doesn't know is that she actually has a big advantage - Brendan and Frado both competed with her in the city challenges to get on the show, and they like her and seem to have a soft spot for her...and they're part of a secret three-person alliance and could probably convince their fellow conspirator Patrick not to vote for her. So whether Elizabeth knows it or not, if it's between her and someone else (who isn't in the alliance), she's probably got three votes that won't swing her way. That's some powerful stuff.

Ali points out that when they go back to the real world, they're not going to avoid desserts for the rest of their lives. So, for healthier options, she brings in Curtis Stone! (Probably to make up for the woody-fest that was the Anna Kournikova visit last week. Now it's the ladies' turn to get their freak on.) Squeals ensue. "Who needs cupcakes?" exclaims Lisa. Apparently everything about him is "delicious". (I cannot help feeling sorry for Curtis.)

So we're going to make something decadent, delicious, and healthy. The winning cupcake, for example, was one which Curtis made, and it was just 100 calories. So you really can have sweet stuff when you're trying to lose weight, but you need positive temptation. Curtis suggests saying, "Do you mind if I make some cupcakes and bring 'em round?" if you're going off to a party at someone's house. That way, the healthy option will be right there for you.

Use egg whites instead of eggs, honey instead of sugar, wheat flour instead of white flour, use raspberry puree in the frosting. Patrick interviews that the resulting cupcakes are good, and this is great compared to the 5500 calories he was eating every day at home. (Ho. Lee. Shit.) Lisa obsesses about Curtis some more and gives him a nice, long hug.

Bonus video: Elizabeth is still mad at herself about participating in the cupcake temptation and opens up to Rick about it. She doesn't even like cupcakes, she laughs. But she's still terrified about going home. She talks about not having control over her body, and we hear that she once had a benign tumor the size of a softball that had to be removed. Rick reflects that having a high-up yellow line only dials up the pressure. He points out that even if she loses just 3lbs a week like she did at the last weigh-in, she'll be at her goal weight before the finale. (THANK YOU! WISDOM AT LAST!) And that's what we're all here for. Elizabeth talks about her father, whose health is falling apart, and she sees her life as his. Again with the fantastic wisdom, Rick points out that every single person in the house could do awesome, but there's still going to be someone below the red line and people below the yellow line. Does that mean the people under the lines did badly? No. He says the worst thing to do is put pressure on ourselves. Just do the best you can, and at the finale you'll do great. Elizabeth appreciates it and thanks him for always listening to her. "I don't have any of my kids here," he shrugs. :) They hug it out.

Adam and Aaron start talking about the temptation and how Adam now has a target on his back. Meanwhile, in another meeting of the super-secret alliance (only this time with Ada included for some reason), Brendan says that Adam went for the temptation because he's scared of the three of them. (Y'know, I want to like all the contestants, but every week I get more and more evidence that Brendan is a jerk.) Frado reflects that as time goes on, the target on Adam's back will just get bigger, so Adam should play the advantage sooner rather than later. But Aaron and Adam think it'll work out. Aaron is of course on Adam's side because Adam saved him from the elimination challenge last week. Finally, Frado points out that the advantage/target thing is kind of immaterial if you just go and put the work in. Adam, he says respectfully, puts the work in. So they have to put the work in, too. I do like Frado, I have to say. In the other room, Aaron and Adam come to the same conclusion. But Brendan is now on an anti-Adam vendetta. He asks Ada if she's in on the anti-Adam action, and she agrees.

Bonus video: So there's drama. Ada has been getting annoyed by Adam, so she vented to Brendan, and Brendan blew it up into drama, and then Frado got on board. Oy, vey. So apparently Adam thinks that Frado is a "shady", Godfather-like character and that Brendan is his concigliere and does whatever Frado tells him to do. Frado is very affronted and feels that Adam should have said such things to his face. You know, "like a man". Frado clarifies that he doesn't mind being called stupid or arrogant, but shady? That cuts deep. (I do notice, however, that Frado doesn't go back to Adam to confront him about these things. You know, "like a man"?) And it turns out that that is how Brendan ends up getting Ada to side with them against Adam.

Ooh. The plot thickens.

Everyone's sitting around and Rick points out that the trainers will be coming soon and grilling them about the temptation. (Rick just keeps proving over and over that he's the smartest man in the house.) Jesse is really nervous and knows Bob and Jillian are going to kick his ass. Sure enough, the trainers show up. Sophia explains the deal. They're blown away by the prize. Oh, and the red line thing, too. They find out that Adam won and are pretty fatalistic about it and the 1350 calories he consumed to get the victory. Sophia is SHOCKED that they didn't chew him out. "Where the heck is the hellfire?!?" she interviews, as we see Tracey flashbacks from a few seasons ago. Bob and Jillian are just having a really good day, I guess. :) Also, Adam is a hard worker, so I think they trust him.

Workout. Everyone has the red line uppermost in their minds. (Probably because Bob and Jillian keep TALKING ABOUT IT!) People freak out in interviews. Patrick remarks that the girls are under a lot of stress, as Lisa walks out of the gym to have a panic attack. Elizabeth fights through another asthma attack. Jillian feels that this is a defense mechanism and knows, from her years of training experience, that asthma isn't really the thing that's holding her back. So they talk it out. Elizabeth doesn't want to die like her father. But she doesn't really believe in her ability to control that. Jillian says that this internal battle with her crap is holding her back, that's what's affecting her breathing. Elizabeth suddenly seems to realise this and gets back on the bike.

Frado tries to keep a low profile but then Bob grabs him, saying that he loves training guys like him. He says that Frado doesn't even know how far his limits are. But Bob wants more. So Frado yells a bunch more. We hear that Frado was taking an unbelievable amount of pills every day and injecting himself with insulin, but now he's off his meds totally...which, I must say, is completely freakin' awesome.

More beatings.

But then Mark screws up his back on the rowing machine. :( This doesn't look good, and Mark is scared.

Next we focus on Aaron. Jillian has him doing ten two-minute sprints, which is pretty unbelievable for a 431lb man. He doesn't think he can do it, either, but Jillian doesn't let him quit. Then we have one of those great moments that keep me watching this show. :) Right before his last sprint, Jillian asks him how it's going to look, that he has an opportunity to change his whole dynamic and finish strong. She interviews that he needs an experience of success in an activity he didn't think he could do. This will help this whole illusion of inability that he's built up about himself to start crashing down. As she asks, "What's the last one gonna be like," Frado calls out from behind Aaron, "London!" which is the name of Aaron's son, the light of his life. Apparently Frado regularly yells this out whenever he sees Aaron ready to quit, which is fantastic. "It's gonna be my best one," Aaron says quietly. Jillian jacks him up until he's yelling it like he means it. "Come on, let's go!" yells out Frado. Aaron interviews that the two things he wants his son to understand are a) unconditional love and b) relentless, passionate, hard work. And he wants London to look at him and say that he wants to be like his dad. So here we go. Supportive yells and whoops come from all over the gym as he sprints it out. And Jillian actually gives out compliments.

Now that is good TV.

Also, eat broccoli. Bob says so.

So...weigh-in! Adam bets on himself and holds back his advantage. Bob and Jillian get into a philosphical argument of gameplay vs getting your life back.

Milestones achieved:

  • Adam dropped under 350lbs
  • Rick dropped under 300lbs
  • Ada and Elizabeth dropped under 225lbs
  • Ada, Lisa and Jessica hit 25lbs of total loss
  • Adam, Rick and Frado hit 50lbs of total loss
  • Aaron, Frado, Patrick, Brendan and Ada hit the 10% mark of total loss
  • Rick hit the 15% mark of total loss
  • Jesse moved from super-obese to morbidly obese
  • Jessica and Lisa moved from morbidly obese to clinically obese

Sadly, though, it's Sophia under the red line and she has to leave campus immediately. Back at home, she's down to 225lbs (a BMI of 35.2, which is clinically obese on the cusp of moving to just plain obese), and is able to coach her cheerleading team properly without looking like a ridiculous hypocrite. The team, for their part, is really supportive of her and is happy to see her doing so well. She also leads spin classes. Her goal is to be down to 172lbs by the finale.

Frado, the biggest loser of the week (thanks to the extra boost from his obvious waterloading last week) has to decide whom to save from the elimination challenge. So he talks to Mark about how his back is doing. Mark wants to be okay so that he can participate in the challenge and Frado can pick someone else. He doesn't seem very sure, but he tells Frado that he can do the challenge.

Bonus video: Frado continues to weigh his options. He says he truly adores the six people at risk, so it's a tough choice. He talks with Jessica, who calls him "Pops". She's pissed off at being under, because she busted her ass this week. She asks Frado to reward her for doing really well this week. He calls her the "top dog of the bottom six". Then he talks to Elizabeth. He asks whether she wants him to save her, or whether she wants to compete. She says that she will always fight. Lisa gets all tearful, which I have to imagine is at least a little bit annoying for a guy like Frado. She claims that she wants to be here and doesn't feel ready to go home, which is how you can tell that she's not, well, ready to go home. Jesse says he's always up for a challenge, so if Frado doesn't pick him, he'll just do his best. Frado obviously likes this, and they clap hands and man-hug it out. Frado really likes Jesse. Burgandy says she feels like she works like crazy. She's never asked for the nod before, she says (hello? last week with Adam?), but she's asking for it now. However, she says, if she doesn't get it, the two of them are still totally cool. At the end of it all, Frado is torn between Jesse and Jessica.

Hey, did you know that Subway is doing breakfasts now? It's called "Build a Better Breakfast". Like OMG, wow! The contestants had no idea they could get breakfast at Subway! And you can, too! Nutritious breakfasts are now easy and delicious! And also, Subway! For breakfast!

Workout time. Ada is in trouble because she basically asked for beatings from Jillian during the weigh-in. We actually get a good bit of insight as to how the weigh-ins are filmed: they take a really long time to do and there's a lot of downtime, during which there's a lot of opportunity to talk. So Ada made the dumbass move of telling Jillian she didn't feel she'd had a breakthrough yet. But what it turns out that what this all is is Ada's way of setting up a failing experience for herself, because that's what she's used to and comfortable with: pushing Jillian to push her so she can give up. And this is exactly what happens. (Incidentally, Jillian is wearing a t-shirt that says Disco Sucks. I think my husband will now love her forever.) "Does this feel just like home?" Jillian asks Ada. "Yup," Ada responds. Jillian follows through: "Good and comfortable here?" This pushes Ada beyond her emotional limits and she leaves the gym.

Outside, they have a heart-to-heart. Nothing Ada has ever done has been good enough for her parents. They call her an idiot, tell her she's worthless. She's always felt they were never proud of her. She tells Jillian about her brother drowning in the kiddie pool with her when her parents went away to get a towel. She knows that they blame her, even though she didn't cause it. But her parents have actually said, "Why couldn't it have been you." They also go on about her weight, saying that she's so fat, she can't do anything right, and they can't stand to look at her.

Man, you know, I already heard most of this before and despised her parents for it, but hearing it again in greater detail, I now loathe them with the heat of a thousand suns. How CAN you do that to your own children. Children are precious, they're gifts to us. It is our sacred responsibility to build them up, and cushion them always with unconditional love, so that they have stability and confidence and self-belief. Hearing the story of a person who experienced the exact opposite of that just breaks my heart. It goes against everything that is good and right and humane. HOW can you do that to a child. Ugh.

But back to Ada specifically. She wants to be happy about the good things she's achieving on the ranch, but she doesn't know how to have those feelings. Jillian advises her to give herself time. She says that until Ada is strong enough to deal with all of her pain, she's not going to be able to feel the good stuff, either. She also identifies to Ada that the environment she grew up in was abusive. (I'm glad someone finally said it.) But, Jillian says, there must be some part of Ada that doesn't believe she's a complete screwup, or she wouldn't bother being here at the ranch. Ada looks up with a hopeful smile that really is like the sun coming up. She wants to be happy with the person that she is.

Okay, it's a start. I just wish Jillian had pointed out that maybe Ada hasn't been failing her whole life, that it's her parents who have been failing her.

For Bob's part, he's pissed off that the girls (yeah, the show is still calling them that) keep falling below the yellow line. He tries to whip them up into a fury of effort. As part of his below-the-yellow-liners rehabilitation effort, he goes to DESPERATE methods and tries something that has NEVER been tried before.


Wait for it...

It's rather shocking...



Dunh, dunh, duuuuuuunh.

So, unsurprisingly, Bob's home is impeccably decorated. He remarks at how nice everyone looks in their off-ranch clothes and how loosely they fit. :)

Mark asks to see Bob's fridge. It contains a lot of fruits and vegetables. But generally he doesn't keep a lot of food in the house. Burgandy doesn't either, that's why they go out for fast food so much, so she's wondering how Bob hacks it. Bob says that the food in the house should have a shelf life of no longer than two weeks, because that means that the food you have is unprocessed. He also works in a little plug for Brita water filters.

He then treats everyone to a vegan meal. Not that he prepared it himself, of course (although he did consider faking it by putting it in pots, which was hilarious), he got a friend to cook for them, but it all looks spectacularly delicious - roasted wild mushroom leek and fennel salad, tomatoes and basil salad, broccolini with pine nuts, and cauliflower. Gawd that makes me hungry, it all looks fantastic. He points out that colourful food is healthy food, that's where all the nutrients are. He remarks that he's been all around the country and seen a lot of beige food, which is not the way to go. (Take note, audience at home!)

Bob then asks people what dinner at their houses look like. Lisa points out that there's a pizza place near their house where they can get a large pizza to feed the family for five bucks. Bob admits that he can't compete with that, but good food (like a bag of beans or whole wheat pasta) is also inexpensive. But he says that Lisa, as a parent, has a responsibility to teach her kids how to eat properly, and he tells her the kids are worth more than a $5 pizza. He knows she's tired, but she can do things to help the kids more. Lisa is jazzed to show her kids how to eat healthily. Everyone's very enthusiastic about the vegan meal, and thank Bob for his hospitality. They all clink their water glasses.

Back at the ranch, Burgandy has been experiencing shin pain for a while now, and finally went to Dr. H. Turns out she has severe tendonitis. She gets a boot to take stress off the bone and immobilize the tendon. But she's out of the elimination challenge. Dr. H. doesn't care much about the yellow line thing, he's more concerned about Burgandy's long-term health, and gets all Dr. McCoy on her ass: "I don't take care of the yellow line, I'm a doctor!"

So Burgandy is therefore automatically up for elimination. They still need to do an elimination challenge, though, because she needs to have someone else with her so people can decide whom to vote for. Meanwhile, Frado has decided to save Jessica from the elimination challenge because she came so close to making it over the yellow line. She is really grateful. Therefore, we have Mark, Jesse, Lisa and Elizabeth duking it out over...carpet! No, not that kind of carpet, you gutter-minded people (although that would be an interesting challenge of...uh...endurance ;). I'm talking about actual carpet. They each have 300ft length of carpet (weighing over 900lbs) rolled up on a big SQUARE tube (the square part making it damn hard to roll, of course) which they have to unroll over the length of some kind of massive sports arena. Then they have to run back and push their button to indicate they're finished. Last one to push their button is up for elimination with Burgandy.

Mark takes an early lead and stays there. Jesse comes in second, so it's down to Lisa and Elizabeth. Elizabeth struggles the whole time because she has a hard time getting a bounce momentum going with the tube. Lisa loses steam near the end because she gets her carpet off-course, but ends up saving herself, encouraging Elizabeth to keep going as she runs back to her button. Elizabeth refuses to give up the whole time and fights, even when she gets her foot stuck under the thing. Mark, Jesse and Lisa then come out to encourage her into finishing, which she does with fantastic, screaming energy. She seems genuinely happy about how she did, which is great.

Personally, I like Elizabeth a lot better than Burgandy (whom I find a bit annoying), but I think Elizabeth has a better shot of succeeding at home. I keep thinking of Burgandy and her military wife-ness and her five children and her foster children, and her having an autistic child as well, and I just cannot imagine where she's going to get the time to work out.

No one else is thinking along these lines, though, because only Ada votes to keep Burgandy around. However, it turns out that I needn't have worried. Burgandy incorporates fitness into her life and takes her kids with her when she does it. As a result, she's down to 180lbs, which gives her a BMI of 30.9. That's very close to being down to just overweight. So she's doing very well indeed. She also seems to be running a community walking club kind of thing, which she seems really good at. Also, she's looking great. Burgandy is a pretty lady.

Ali then springs a surprise on the remaining contestants. The house is empty by one more person...for the moment. But behind them on a balcony are the five contestants that didn't make it out of the city challenges: Montina, Anna, Corey, Sandy and Shanna. All with arms folded and looking fierce, as no doubt instructed by the producers.

A-ha! I knew we'd be seeing those guys again! This of course explains why the show ditched two people this week - to make room for one more.

Next week: (SPOILERS)

TV Guide: Players who didn't make the initial cut for a spot on the ranch return to weigh in, and the person with the highest percentage of weight loss wins entry into the competition. Later, the contestants are split into blue and black teams and compete in a food-trivia challenge in downtown Los Angeles.


  • Mark and Patrick could drop below 350lbs
  • Jessica could drop below 250lbs
  • Elizabeth could hit the 25lb mark of total loss
  • Aaron, Jesse, Patrick and Brendan could hit the 50lb mark of total loss
  • Elizabeth, Lisa and Jessica could hit the 10% mark of total loss
  • Ada, Frado, Mark, Jesse, Brendan and Adam could hit the 15% mark of total loss
  • Aaron could move from super-obese to morbidly obese
  • Ada could move from clinically obese to obese


# loss % total loss % lbs lost total lbs lost BMI
1 Frado (5.93) Rick (15.14) Frado (20) Mark (60) Ada (36.2)
2 Ada (4.27) Mark (14.25) Aaron (12) Adam (56) Burgandy (36.6)
3 Brendan (3.37) Adam (13.93) Brendan (11) Rick (53) Elizabeth (38.3)
4 Rick (2.94) Frado (13.62) Ada, Adam, Patrick (10) Frado (50) Sophia (39.2)
5 Adam (2.81) Ada (13.18) Aaron (49) Lisa (39.5)
6 Aaron (2.78) Jesse (13.01) Jesse (48) Jessica (39.8)
7 Patrick (2.73) Brendan (12.98) Rick (9) Brendan (47) Brendan (42.7)
8 Jessica (2.68) Patrick (11.00) Jesse, Mark (8) Patrick (44) Frado (43.0)
9 Elizabeth, Lisa (2.62) Aaron (10.47) Ada (34) Rick (43.9)
10 Jessica (9.93) Jessica, Lisa (7) Jessica, Lisa (28) Adam (44.4)
11 Jesse (2.43) Lisa (9.72) Mark (45.1)
12 Burgandy (2.29) Elizabeth (8.61) Elizabeth (6) Sophia (22) Patrick (45.7)
13 Mark (2.17) Sophia (8.09) Burgandy (5) Elizabeth (21) Jesse (48.8)
14 Sophia (0.79) Burgandy (7.79) Sophia (2) Burgandy (18) Aaron (51.0)

Selfish is good

(This is an incredibly late recap of the October 5 show.)

We must immediately flash back to last week so that the viewership can understand what's going on. The most important message is that THIS SEASON IS TOTALLY DIFFERENT FROM ALL OTHER SEASONS SO PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GAWD DON'T CHANGE THAT DIAL. The yellow line at weigh-ins is around the halfway mark. This drops a ton of people below, which means we need an elimination challenge so people can fight to stay out of the elimination room. Also, the first weigh-in did not go well for the ladies. Finally, it came down to Allie and Tina. Tina begged tearfully to stay and was kept, leaving Allie terrified of going home.

So what's happening now? What a great question! Could there be...drama??? Patrick interviews that things are TENSE. People are upset and aggravated. The concept of eliminating contestants every week is finally starting to sink in and people are feeling a little stunned. Brendan continues to have one of the hairiest torsos I've ever seen.

Having survived the elimination, Tina is feeling really guilty about having begged to stay over Allie. Lisa interviews that she's really bummed that Allie is gone. And Ada says there are "whispers" going around the house that Tina actually now wants to go home.

Seems like the whispers are true! Tina addresses the entire house and thanks them for keeping her, but then breaks into tears. Almost incomprehensibly (what with all the crying), she confesses that she has guilt, says that her begging to stay was "being all screwed up", and says she's going to ask to go home today.

The hell?

Look, chickie, going home now is not going to bring Allie back! She was already eliminated, her plane has probably touched down in Oklahoma by now, you're not doing ANYBODY any favours by going home, you're just giving up on yourself.

Frado sums my feelings up nicely by telling Tina she's being selfish and she needs to take advantage of the opportunity. Moreover, he says, as Rick nods in agreement, her responsibility is to honour Allie and stay. Brendan also points out, quite rightly, that going home the day after the elimination makes no sense. Tina claims she just doesn't want to bring anybody down, which makes even LESS sense. If she's a weak link that's guaranteed to be below the yellow line, she would actually bump everyone else UP one position. I'm thinking Tina just isn't too bright. Brendan also calls her selfish. Rick, that wise and perceptive paternal figure, asks her if there's anything at home that she wants to go back for. Tina reveals that right before she came on the show, she withdrew $16K from her retirement fund to take her entire family on a once-in-a-lifetime vacation.


Okay, NOW her actions are making sense.

This doesn't change much, though - the rest of the house is still flabbergasted that she wouldn't want to be here. But wait, there's even more flabber to gast! Lisa says that Allie going home has shortened HER stay in the house, because she believes Allie can't lose weight at home and she wants to go home so she can help Allie to do it.

The hell?

Patrick, again expressing my feelings beautifully, interviews that that's absurd. However, Lisa has certainly been effective in taking the heat off Tina, because now everyone concentrates on pointing out how ridiculous LISA is being. Seriously, Lisa? Your mothering complex is THAT BAD that you are willing to throw away a lifetime, life-changing opportunity and sacrifice yourself for some young woman that you only met, what, a month ago? What about Lisa's kids, Frado asks. Lisa has no answer, she just says that she and Allie can do this together because they live just ten miles apart. Elizabeth points out that Lisa needs to take care of herself. Lisa isn't listening. Like, at all. Frado shakes his head pityingly in an interview. Jessica offers to help the both of them pack.

So the show sends Bob in to handle All Teh Drama. When he finds out what's happening, he calls bullshit and tells Tina she's not ready to go home and that every person here is just as deserving to stay as everyone else. He reflects that the first elimination always makes everyone crazy. His cure is to take them all to the gym. No Jillian, just Bob, and it will be a major circuit workout. In fact, from now on, ALL workouts have to be insane because weigh-ins can obviously apparently at any moment. Adam senses impending doom.

Adam interviews that he thinks Bob is on a mission to find out if anyone else is feeling less than totally committed to this process. Case in point: Bob threatens to break Jesse's legs and beat him with them. Much sweat is exuded. We get a bit of focus on Patrick and hear again that his purpose for being here is his children. Who, I might say, are really cute. :) Elizabeth's focus is to be healthy so she can do things she loves, like dancing.

Moans. Falls. Puking. Yells. Sweat. Etc.

Great line from Burgandy: "Bob crushes you into dust and then asks you to enjoy it."

But it works, because Lisa walks out of the gym that day feeling good about herself.

Bob is also having the same problem with Brendan as I have with my older daughter getting ready in the mornings: he's not going fast enough and is hoping to take advantage of Bob's inattention to go slower. Bob channels my parenting and calls him on his shit.

Frado interviews macho-ly that Bob gave him the toughest workout of his life...and he's been in the Marine Corps and played football, dammit, so you KNOW that Bob's a goddamn hardass. Rick gets amused in an interview about how loud Frado is in the gym. He sure does yell. :) He also, with classic military mindset, refuses to talk back to Bob. It's Bob's gym, and Bob is in charge.

Sadly, Jesse has no such mindset. "You got something to say to me, Jesse?" Bob asks him. "I don't have shit to say to you, Bob," replies Jesse as he walks away to a stair machine. Bob's eyes go wide with disbelief. Jesse starts whining about how things are hard for him, while Bob demands respect. Jesse apologizes. But it's too late. In return for Jesse's bad behaviour, Bob decides not to give everyone the easier thing he was planning for them to do. Naturally, this makes Jesse feel like crap, especially since he really does respect Bob a lot.

Tina shows Bob pictures of her kids and grandchildren. Oh, says Bob, she's such a nurturer. But how can you take care of others if you don't take care of yourself? We also find out that Tina's daughter is enormous and has diabetes and other obesity-related health problems. Her daughter tried out for the show but it's Tina who's here. (Geez. If I were Tina, I would be happy to stay on the ranch, rather than going home and risking my kid coming after me with a shotgun because I screwed her up so badly.) Bob talks to her about not giving up, and tells her that she does have strength, and she needs to be here so she can pay it forward to her daughter. Tina decides that she owes it to her daughter to stay.

Yeah, I don't buy it. Tina's just an emotional see-saw.

Meanwhile, Jillian is (predictably) really pissed off because almost all the women were below the yellow line last week. Bob's not particularly happy about it, either. Jillian takes the girls outside and tells them this is unacceptable and she does not want this season to be a jockfest. Well, maybe Jillian, if you didn't call them GIRLS all the time, and maybe started referring them as WOMEN, so that they could internall DEFINE themselves as such, they'd start kicking a little more ASS? Just a suggestion there.

Tennis, anyone? The show has brought in Anna Kournikova. Burgandy is very excited. The camera assists with Anna's entrance by slowing down and softening up, and the Biggest Loser crew brings out a wind machine for her hair, and we get an interview with Mark telling us that all the male contestants were especially gobsmacked. Jesse also tells us that she is "slammin' hot". Apparently, Anna could teach him calligraphy and he would be riveted. (As a calligrapher, I find calligraphy very interesting, and I take exception to that statement. Unfortunately, I suspect that Jesse's backup "most boring activity ever" would have been knitting, which I'm also obsessed with, so either way, I must be the world's dullest recapper.) At any rate, in case you didn't notice, the point here is that Anna Kournikova is hot.

Anna tells us that the most important thing is to always keep your feet moving and your heartrate up. Adam had no idea that tennis was so demanding. Brendan interviews that it's a great workout and is much more fun than the gym. Anna was inspired by the contestants and hopes she inspired them, too. Turns out she inspired Brendan to hug her for an inappropriately long length of time and comment on how great she smells. Fantastic, now she has a hairy-backed stalker.

Bonus video: Cardio tennis! In which the point is not to be good at tennis, but to burn calories. (Okay, then, I'm in. I SUCK at tennis.) Rick (whom she calls Richard, which I bet thrills him no end) gets a hug from Anna. Aaron is a big fan, so this is a dream come true. She demonstrates hopping side-to-side to Brendan and all he does is look at her ass. He admits in an interview that it was very hard to concentrate with her around. Jesse plans a proposal. Burgandy feels likes she's in her element. Ali thanks Anna for coming and Anna is deluged with sweaty hugs. By golly, she's a good sport.

But wait, the fun is not finished, there's a challenge! The prize is immunity at this week's weigh-in. Everybody gets a cylinder and has to fill up other people's tubes with tennis balls they have to run onto the court and get. Once your tube is full, you're out.

Brendan's goal is to avoid giving balls to Frado or Patrick, as the three of them have an alliance. Frado just wants to give balls to Tina. And he's not alone - everyone gets in on the action. Adam defines this as "making Tina earn her spot". Tina receives the message. The next target is Burgandy, who apparently was talking about taking all the men out first, so Brendan wants her gone. Burgandy doesn't quite know why she was targeted, but chooses to believe it's because she's viewed as a threat. (Um, honey? No.) Sophia, Ada, Lisa, Aaron, and Adam are next to go. Things are getting tough and gruelling for the remaining players as Elizabeth is taken out, and then Rick, Mark, Jessica, and Jesse. Unsurprisingly, it's the three-man alliance of Frado, Patrick and Brendan left standing. Adam remarks that maybe they have some kind of agreement? (Good call, Adam. I'll be interested in seeing where you go with that line of thinking over the next few weeks.)

Finally, it's Frado with immunity. In triumph, he yells. (No surprise.) He vows not to take it as a free ride and will continue his intensity in the gym.

Oh, and hey, surprise! Weigh-in tomorrow! Rick tells us that the contestants have been completely wrong so far in predicting what will happen next, so they might as well give up trying.

Super-secret meeting of the three-man alliance! And Patrick makes absolutely sure that it will be super-secret by sticking his head out the door and making sure the hallway is TOTALLY CLEAR before going back inside whoever's bedroom they're meeting in. (Yeah. Like if anyone happened to see him do that, they would NEVER GUESS that something was going on.)

Bonus video: more footage of the super-secret meeting. Brendan admits that he's sort of dumb as sand, but he's got street smarts, dammit. Also, people have apparently been trying to listen to their super-secret meetings. Patrick interprets this to mean that people are scared of them. (Gawd, what are these, people, five?) Brendan suggests coming up with a strategy to vote specific people out, but Frado would rather just work hard in the gym and keep each other safe. Brendan points out that that's great, but there are going to be weeks where, y'know...which I guess means that there will be weeks where the opportunity will present itself to eliminate serious threats (Mark immediately springs to my mind, for instance). Brendan defines Frado as a tough Marine and Patrick defines himself as a country bumpkin. Frado welcomes him to the city. :)

Nothing really interesting happens, except that they all tell each other how great they all think each other is. Oh, and they promise to make sure that no one finds out what they've got going on. Fist-bumps ensue.

And now, the Dreaded Second Weigh-in (introduced by Jillian, who is still not over the lack of female achievement on the scale), where people typically throw up very low numbers. And indeed, my weight predictions this week are based on subtracting an entire percentage point from people's weekly average so far (remembering that last week's weigh-in occurred TWO weeks after the initial weigh-in, so I divided last week's results by two to get "average"), and my predictions kicked some serious ASS. I guessed exactly right for several people.

(Yes, I'm tooting my own horn. Shut up, it's my blog. Besides, being selfish is good.)

Milestones achieved:

  • Mark hit the 50lb mark of total loss
  • Patrick hit the 25lb mark of total loss
  • Adam, Mark and Jesse hit the 10% mark of total loss
  • Sophia moved from being morbidly obese to clinically obese

Frado's number was particularly bad, with just a 3lb loss. He pretends that he feels bad, but come on, he totally waterloaded. A good week to do it, since the Dreaded Second Weigh-in provides an excellent screen for bad numbers. Even Jillian is taken in, saying that she doesn't think Frado is a game-playing type of person. (Oh, Jillian, what charming naivete.) But he practically admits it in an interview.

I should go on record here to say that I don't think badly of anyone for waterloading when they have immunity. It is an extremely smart move, it makes total sense, and actually I think it would be silly NOT to do it. Artificially raising your weight by drinking a bunch of water when your weight loss doesn't matter one week means that you will have a fantastic number at the next weigh-in once the water is out of your system and you've had another week of working out and eating right. So getting immunity one week is actually like getting immunity for two, if you play it right. Frado played it right. I have no qualms. I just wish people would be more honest and not pretend that they're not doing it.

The ladies do somewhat better than last week, but not a whole lot - this time there are two of them above the line instead of just one. (Notice that the only female who's been above the line both times is Ada. I am starting to love her. Sadly, she still has no love for herself. But hopefully we'll get around to fixing that soon.)

Adam, as the biggest loser of the week, gets to save someone. Burgandy, who lost just a pound this week, pleads her case to him for staying, and he looks like he's seriously considering it.

After a product placement and Tina telling Bob she actually now wants to stay (see-saw!), we have a workout. Bob promises Aaron - who is very frustrated at dropping below the line - that they're going to fix things. Jillian kicks the guys' asses. Bob reflects on the need to not beat the crap out of the contestants who need to participate in the elimination challenge, since they need to be fresh for the challenge. My husband remarks how that sucks, since people who fall below the line would then get a substandard workout and run an even greater risk of falling below the line the following week.

Bob uses the workout to try and teach Lisa to be selfish. She cries and Bob tells her he sees something special in her. Oh, also, he mentions the pay-it-forward theme again.

Bonus video: Adam marvels at all the alliancing and gameplaying that's starting to go on - why not just do your best and work out? But of course he has a gameplay-related decision to make about whom to save from the elimination challenge. Lisa reassures him that she doesn't expect the pass just because they're good friends. Plus, Bob gave her An Epiphany, so everything's cool. "I don't know what I'm gonna do," Adam reflects as she leans on his shoulder. "I mean about lunch," he then clarifies. Okay, that was funny. :)

Aaron's workout has him thinking about getting rid of his losing attitude. This makes him start to think about how maybe he should fight for himself. So he asks Adam to consider saving him. This is kind of a breakthrough realisation for Aaron, asking for help, that's pretty good. And it makes a difference, because Adam does end up choosing to save Aaron.

The elimination challenge is to dig through four massive piles of sand (one pile at a time) looking for a brass ring. Whoever finds the brass ring in a pile first is safe from elimination, and the remaining people at risk have to move to the next pile and dig again. By the end of it, there will be two players without rings, and they will be the players up for elimination. Brendan does a lot of whining about how he deserves a ring and can't believe he hasn't found a ring, and how he uncovered a ring, but Sophia grabbed the ring, and ring ring ring waa waa waa...suck it up boy, dig!

Once all the dust, er, sand, clears, the two people on the block are Lisa and Tina. Burgandy notes the poetic justice that the two people who said they wanted to go home at the beginning of the week are the two up for elimination. Lisa makes a heartfelt plea, saying that for a while she was wanting to go home to her kids and wasn't really working hard, but she now knows she's not ready and needs to stay. Brendan is unmoved, he calls bullshit. Tina simply says that she worked hard and it's up to the rest of them. She doesn't put much effort into her case, which disgusts Adam. He doesn't seem to be alone in these feelings, because Tina gets the boot without Lisa even receiving a single vote.

Back at home, Tina is continuing to fight the good fight and has helped her daughter lose a bunch of weight, too - 85lbs! Tina is down to 205lbs, which is a BMI of 32.1, so she's now merely obese. Tina wants her and her daughter to come on the finale together on stage.

Next week:

Look for the following milestones:

  • Adam could drop below the 350lb mark
  • Rick could drop below the 300lb mark
  • Sophia could drop below the 250lb mark
  • Elizabeth could drop below the 225lb mark
  • Ada, Sophia, Tina, Lisa and Jessica could hit the 25lb mark of total loss
  • Aaron, Rick, Jesse and Adam could hit the 50lb mark of total loss
  • Aaron, Tina, Patrick, Brendan, Frado, Jessica and Ada could hit the 10% mark of total loss
  • Adam, Rick and Mark could hit the 15% mark of total loss
  • Jesse could move from being super-obese to morbidly obese
  • Jessica and Lisa could move from being morbidly obese to clinically obese


# loss % total loss % lbs lost total lbs lost BMI
1 Adam (3.26) Rick (12.57) Adam, Patrick (12) Mark (52) Burgandy (37.4)
2 Patrick (3.17) Mark (12.35) Adam (46) Ada (37.8)
3 Jesse (2.95) Adam (11.44) Mark (11) Rick (44) Tina (38.1)
4 Mark (2.89) Jesse (10.84) Jesse (10) Jesse (40) Elizabeth (39.3)
5 Jessica (2.61) Brendan (9.94) Rick (8) Aaron (37) Sophia (39.5)
6 Rick (2.55) Ada (9.30) Aaron, Jessica (7) Brendan (36) Lisa (40.6)
7 Ada (2.50) Patrick (8.50) Patrick (34) Jessica (40.9)
8 Sophia (2.33) Frado (8.17) Ada, Sophia (6) Frado (30) Brendan (44.2)
9 Lisa (1.84) Aaron (7.91) Ada (24) Rick (45.2)
10 Tina (1.62) Tina (7.60) Brendan, Lisa (5) Jessica, Lisa (21) Frado (45.7)
11 Aaron (1.60) Jessica (7.45) Adam (45.7)
12 Brendan (1.51) Sophia (7.35) Tina (4) Sophia, Tina (20) Mark (46.1)
13 Elizabeth (1.29) Lisa (7.29) Elizabeth, Frado (3) Patrick (47.0)
14 Frado (0.88) Elizabeth (6.15) Elizabeth (15) Jesse (50.0)
15 Burgandy (0.46) Burgandy (5.63) Burgandy (1) Burgandy (13) Aaron (52.5)