Biggest Loser Recap: Trainer Turnabout, Part I!
In the most melodramatic episode ever on the Biggest Loser, couples split up and trainers changed after a pop challenge, which lead to a morose Ranch and a crying Bob. But all contestants seemed to rally for an epic 24-hour bicycling challenge that ended the first episode of a two-parter this week. Here’s what happened:
Muddy Mix-Up: The teams dreaded the pop challenge as soon as they saw boards with blue shirts and black shirts, knowing there would be a team switch-up. Alison Sweeney announced that one member of each pair would compete in a classic football drill of up-downs, where you begin prone in the mud and then rise up to touch a medallion. The first to complete 100 up-downs would retain their partner and trainer; the loser would split from his or her partner and switch trainers. The rest of the group would have their trainers determined by coin toss. Sione and Filipe desperately wanted to keep Bob. Sione put up a valiant effort but she was no match for challenge monster Tara, who was equally keen on keeping Jillian. In the end, Tara won for herself and Laura. In an excruciating slo-mo sequence, Kristin beat Helen to stay out of last place. New Teams: After all the flipping and switching, Sione, Filipe, Helen and Mike changed over to Jillian’s team; Aubrey, Mandi and Dane flipped to Bob’s group. A sullen Sione lamented, “It’s almost like I am betraying someone I love.” When Jillian got her first look at the squad, she addressed the disappointment of her new charges and tried to get them comfortable. She said, “The silver lining of the scenario is they get the best of both worlds. I think it’s an opportunity.” But in the most over-the-top sequence ever in the series, Bob dramatically pulled aside his former teammates before working out with his new group and embraced them all with tears and a wobbly lip. “I’m having a real hard time,” he said. “I’m going to miss you guys. That’s just the bottom line.” Back in the gym, he tried to muster the energy to work out but it took him a while. When he once again stated that this was the most devastating twist he has ever faced on the show, the music swelled and producers showered us with Bob Team Flashbacks. Can we pour it on any thicker?
Pedal Power: Alison gathered the contestants in the gym and had them face two dramatically lit bicycles and said the challenge was simple — to put as many miles on the team’s bike as they could and the team that rode the most miles would win a three-pound advantage in the next weigh-in and a trek bike for each member. The rub was that the challenge would last 24 hours. In a clever bit of strategy, the Black Team decided early on that each would bike in only a half-hour shift, giving each other enough of a break in between. At the 9-hour-remaining mark, a tired Mandi proposed to everyone that they stop and conserve their energy and call a truce; Sione said he made a personal vow to finish all challenges. Sione’s speech changed everyone’s mind and they pushed on through. At the end, the Black Team did win with 301.9 miles biked compared with 264 miles for the Blue Team. Tara rode the furthest of anyone, logging in 58.8 miles. Even Mandi appreciated Sione’s plea for them to continue. The camaraderie and can-do spirit displayed at the end of the episode marked such a contrast to last season’s group. Bravo! –Cynthia Wang
Tell us: Do you like the trainer switch-up or is that one twist too many this season? Did Bob overreact?