By People Staff
Updated December 10, 2008 12:00 AM
Credit: Dave Bjerke/NBC

There’s a certain scientific mystery surrounding the end of every season of Biggest Loser — just where does all the fat go? — And Tuesday’s episode was no exception. The four remaining (and now normal-sized) contestants came face-to-face with their former selves and stepped up during shocking weigh-in that put Vicky and Michelle in the finale — and sent Ed and Heba to the confessional to plead their case to America.

First, each contestant sat down to watch videos of their 11-week journeys. Then, they were presented with an image of themselves to show them how far they’ve come since the first weigh-in. “I can’t believe we looked like that,” Ed said solemnly.

In an effort to puncture Vicky’s tough exterior, Bob gave her a talking-to, informing her that she’ll blow up like a balloon away from the ranch if she doesn’t change her attitude. He mentioned Ryan Benson, the season 1 winner, who Bob claimed is now the same weight as he was when he walked onto the ranch for the first time, “because he didn’t learn anything.” Instead, Bob said, he focused on winning the game.

“Anything about yourself you’ve learned?” Bob asked.

“Nope,” Vicky responded, later adding, “I’m gonna be the next Biggest Loser.”

The gang got a special delivery of their old clothes and, after swimming in their jeans, shirts and jackets, Heba (who else?) suggested they burn oversized outfits and make a pact to never gain back the weight.

For the challenge, they had to lug all the weight they’d lost (in the form of weight belts) around a racetrack, making pit stops for each week of weight loss to dump weight as they go. Ed won handily and got the Biggest Loser meal plan delivered to their house every day leading up to the finale as his prize — and $10,000!

At the weigh-in, Vicky lost 6 lbs. Heba dropped 7 lbs., which at 217 lbs., is not enough. Then in a shocking twist, Ed stepped up and gained 2 lbs.! Bob pointed out the “obvious” game-play at work and said, “Ed’s going to do whatever he needs to do to give Heba whatever she wants.”

Thanks to Ed, Vicky made the finale. “It feels so good,” she said. Michelle got up and lost 9 lbs., which meant she also made the finale. Heba and Ed, both below the yellow line, headed to the confessional to plead their cases to viewers at home.

“I want it more for her than I want it for myself,” Ed said. “Please vote for Heba.”

All four semi-finalists traveled back to their hometowns and each reflected on who they used to be and who they are now. “I’m leaving behind the portly guy I brought here with me,” Ed said.

Added Michelle: “I am a changed person.” — Sara Hammel

Tell us: Who will be voted in as the third finalist? What do you make of Ed’s strategy to get Heba in the finale? Did you think Vicky would make it? Who will win this year’s Biggest Loser title?

Dave Bjerke/NBC