I think that the next time Bunim/Murray brings us a Real World/Road Rules Challenge series, they should just forget about the stupid guys team, and focus solely on the girls. The guys simply aren’t that interesting. I am starting to believe that they are along for the ride just to hookup with the girls. Think about it for a minute. One team of 12 girls from Real World and another 12 from Road Rules. The producers would get the rivalry of the seasons that they wanted, but you know that simply being on the same team isn’t going to prevent any of them from fighting with their own teammates. To tell you the truth, they could save money making the each season if they simply reduced the players to Tina, Tonya, Coral, Rachel, Veronica, and Katie. Randomly choose the teams, and have them fight to the death under in the Thunderdome. Now that would be good television.You notice how every now and then, the producers of try and do a personality makeover on one or more of the the contestants. People have told me that Ace was actually a fun guy and that I simply got a bad impression of him from his weak performances on the last two challenges. Maybe that is true, but from the video of this season, it looks like Mallory also jumped off the Ace bandwagon, so I am not the only one who thinks he’s a douchebag. This week’s makeover contestant was Tonya. We get scenes of her in a club, having fun, enjoying herself, kissing Angela. You know, the standard stuff. It was oddly the same type of intro we got for Ace the previous week, and he went home. I wondered if this would also mean bad news for Tonya.
Once again, we are reminded on how the new people are going to have a hard time against the veterans. They are acting like this is some sort of surprise or something. This is how it always is. And it doesn’t matter when your Bunim/Murray season actually aired, it only matters how many times you have been on the challenges. The people who don’t have enough energy/incentive to get jobs come back on these things, and they all know they need to win so they can spend another six months or so without a job until the next challenge comes around. I think this was the point The Miz was trying to get across to Kina near the beginning of the episode. Kina was being naive about the alliances on their team, and The Miz came away with a somewhat thoughtful response, although I thought he was too drunk to even pay attention to her speaking. My theory is that he was trying to get her drunk so she would hook up with him, but somehow his plan went awry and he was forced to talk with her. That was probably not the type of thing the producers were counting on when they loaded the houses with all of that booze. By the way, let me be the first one to warn the Bunim/Murray producers about a future class action lawsuit from all of the people who appeared on their shows and became alcoholics who couldn’t hold down a job.
Before we got to the challenge, there was one more little thing we had to get out of the way. You knew it would be only a matter of time before somebody in the girls’ house would complain about something petty and then the person would hear it and start a fight that was just as petty and would blow it completely out of proportion. In seasons past, it would have been Katie vs. Veronica in this type of battle royale, but this season, we have Tina, and you know that she is always going to be part of some irrational confrontation. So what was this argument about? Well, it turns out that Tina overheard somebody saying that Tonya was saying that Tina was on the phone too long, and people were looking for it, and couldn’t find it. Not a big deal? Well, it was for Tina. She started saying that she hates it when people talk shit or, you know, say anything about her. Tina started saying how Tonya was the biggest liar in the house and she would start so much shit if she wanted to. Tonya said that she is not a liar if she is speaking the truth, and the truth is that Tina had the phone when people couldn’t find it. This started Tina off again, with the only real effect being the breakout of hysterical laughter of anybody starting the fight. B-side tells me that Tonya complaining about the phone is especially ironic because she was basically on the phone crying to her boyfriend for the entirety of her season in Chicago. I guess she is just trying to prevent others from talking on the phone all season and having their housemates hate them. For her part Coral said if there was a fight her money was on Tina, because Tina fights dirty. Well, everything about Tina is dirty, but yes, I agree with Coral.
This week’s challenge is easily the most hyped challenge so far. Verizon was sponsoring this challenge, so you knew it had to be something about cell phones. How is MTV going to work in cell phones into the challenge? By placing them in the middle of a huge block of ice shaped like a cowboy hat. But this was no ordinary 10 gallon hat, this appeared to be about a 100 gallon hat, and the cell phone was wrapped in plastic in the middle of that block. The teams had to get to the phone, then call another cell phone to win. And as Jonny Mosely said, “No urinating!” It wasn’t very difficult to figure out that the easiest way was to get the ice to melt in some way. The easiest way to do that seemed to be body friction, so the teams began to shake their asses and everything else on these big blocks of ice in order to generate that heat. The leaders for the girls were Ibis, Aneesa, and Kina, for the guys we had Shawn, Shane, and Dan. Although I praised the producers for trying to switch things up when it came to voting players out with the new team leaders scheme, I have to boo them for not being able to figure out one actual challenge that requires any sort of team leadership skills. None of the challenges depended on the performance of the leaders, and this week was more of the same.
I am sure that many of you are trying to imagine what this all looked like. Let me tell you know that I am sure ratings for Manhunt and The L-Word were down all across the country. The guys decided that they would place some of the bigger guys on top, and use them as some sort of human saw with other team members pulling them back and forth. This was completely ineffective for anything other than simulating sex. Hey, at least it made Shane happy, right? But the innovations did not stop there. Tonya brought the great idea of using rocks to increase your body heat to make it easier for your body to melt the ice. Well, I wish somebody would have told Tonya that you would need a pretty big and hot rock to increase your body heat enough to make a difference for the huge block of ice, especially before Tonya thought it was such a good idea that she would put the rocks in her mouth to warm up her tongue. Because the huge surface area of her tongue at 99 degrees was surely going to make a huge difference, or not. The girls really had no chance in this because their body mass simply couldn’t get the heat up enough to make a difference. Actually they might have tried doing it topless or naked, so as to distract the guys, but I guess their team leaders weren’t creative enough. Veronica complained about their strategy saying it was nothing more than “Blow and suck! Blow and suck! Use your hands!” God Veronica, the leaders were just trying to get their team to try something on a block of ice a few activities they were already really good at. What’s the harm in that?
As we are to expect, the girls lost the challenge and were sent off to vote out one of their leaders. The guys won, so the leaders would have to remove one of the weaker players, but at least they would get to go home with a Playstation 2 and a couple of games. Which reminds me of another reason why I think the girls are losing all of the time. Sure they might have wanted to win a trip to Cancun, but do they really have any incentive to win a low rider bike or a Playstation (other than to sell it on ebay a few hours after they receive it)? Probably not. If the producers want the girls to have a chance, they have to have a better incentive – cash prizes are a much better idea. I think the members of the girls team simply want to stick around long enough to win the grind prize, which is usually a car, and could care less about winning. That’s why you rarely see any of the “veterans” take a chance at being leader. It’s easier to let the new chumps be leader and vote them off after they lose. I am surprised Rachel and Coral actually risked it by being leaders in the previous episodes. To tell you the truth, I wouldn’t be surprised if Coral and her crew began to throw some of the competitions soon.
Voting for the guys was difficult, at least it appeared to be that way. They voted on performance, but there wasn’t any individual effort for anybody to go by in this challenge, so the leaders had to go back a few competitions to make a decision. The only people left that had made a mistake were the disqualifications of Mike and Adam in the hanging competition. Now, before anybody starts to worry that The Miz might leave, let me assure you that it didn’t happen. Before the “vote Mike off” discussion got much headway, the leaders came to their senses and realized that he had more experience than Adam. Either that, or perhaps Jonathan Murray and the ghost of Mary-Elliz Bunim appeared and told them that their chances of returning for another challenge would be severely limited if they voted off Mike. The threw in some talk about voting off Derrick and Chris because they aren’t sure how they would hold up or something, but those ideas were vetoed as well. The guys could have made things easier if they had remembered that Abram had also had a penalty in the snake challenge and had voted him off. As if cleaner heads would have actually prevailed.
As for the girls, it was time for the bullies to speak up and vote off one of the leaders. For some reason, it became time to pile on Kina and her leadership. I couldn’t see any reason why she was doing any better than Aneesa or Ibis, but Rachel and Tonya put it in perspective for me saying that Kina “Worked hard, but didn’t lead hard” and that “She was focused, but almost too focused”. Oh, it’s all so clear now. Katie, who has been fairly quiet this season, saw through this transparent attempt at impartiality and said she hated the intimidation tactics that were going on and that she would do something about it.
At Elimination Hill, Kina took her eviction in stride. I was half surprised to see her go, after all, we hadn’t yet seen that clip with her and Derrick and the frosted flakes. Adam, on the other hand, was pissed and stormed off. He said later that he would have been OK with leaving had he not felt “cheated” about what happened. Nobody gave him a fair shot. Well, that may have been true, but I am not quite sure what he was expecting from this reality show. I am also sure this won’t stop Adam from doing the exact same thing next time if he is given the chance, or at least throw a pool party to make people like him again. And knowing what happened at that pool party, it starts to make me think a little. Adam and Mike were in line to get voted off, Adam loses to Mike, Mike goes to Adam’s pool party, Mike gets injured at the pool party and gets staples in his head after an “accident”. I think Adam got the best revenge. Ever.
So, here is how things stand. Of the three guys and the three girls that have been voted off, four of them are on their first RW/RR challenge. Although Brad said he was going to do something about it, and the girls had yet another conference on how things are unfair, it looks like the pattern has been set. The new kids on the block are getting picked off one by one, and I am not sure how much they can do to stop any of it.