Note: Winner “spoilers” below.
Good lord. What the hell, MTV? Was it really necessary to try and kill these people? For up to $75K each? As a band that was emo before there was emo once said, that joke isn’t funny anymore. I mean, CT walking on all fours from exhaustion? That’s not cool. Johnny taking a snarly, almost abusive tone with Camila? That’s not fun. Diem eating soured shark? Ok, that’s a little bit fun. Also, CT with half the animal blood he just drank running down his face, sorta cool. So I guess I won’t be too indignant to recap this finale. But it was out-there. And it’s more fun to recap people being actual wimps than to recap people crapping out in a situation that could actually make you die.
Our six wake up in their tents, all curled up. Well, TJ wakes them and tells them it’s time to start their day. They’ll be completing Final Challenges 3-8, with the added bonus of running in hip-deep snow from one to the other. Challenge 3 is an eating challenge, which I’m not sure isn’t the entirety of these people’s breakfast, from which they will pull their energy to cross this glacier and climb this mountain. Said feast consists of an animal’s head (cow?), a horn of blood, and soured shark. Or, per Johnny, “What Charles Manson would serve his family at Christmastime.” He gets in a couple of good turns of phrase this ep. I guess he’s only really a dick when his voice rings out “Come on Camilaaaaaa” about three dozen times. You know how those hard-working sound editors like to doubly re-dub.
Apparently the horn of blood also has some skin in it
Then they have to break a box, get a key, and unlock some snowshoes and poles chained together. Which they don’t even get to use for the whole journey. Then there’s a puzzle!! which is basically “Think Outside the Box,” advanced edition. (Is it known that that stupid overused corporate expression came from a dot and line drawing puzzle? Or is that just something my creative writing teacher made up?) They have to do this puzzle with giant poles, and not a single one of them thinks to just draw lines in the snow first to figure it out. Sigggghhh. The three couples were close until this point, but Diem dominates the puzzle, leaving Johnny and Camila behind and Emily and Ty (who never finish the puzzle but get released after a half hour) way behind.
Okay, ya pulled your weight. You can knock off the grating narration.
Next, they have to dig through snow to a tunnel that’s been built for them, go through the tunnel, and dig themselves out on the other side. The girls have the advantage here with their relative thinness. At this point, CT becomes permanently winded. Johnny and Camila start to catch up. Emily and Ty are still in it, but still way behind.
How ya liking the experience now, big guy?
Then another puzzle, which is like life-size Rubik’s cube meets Jenga pieces meets the memory game with runes. Oh, good times indeed. We hear the voices of the refs, who presumably keep them all from dying (or at least dying out on the mountain) the rest of the race. So there’s that. Theeen they have to bring their medallions that they earned on all the challenges thus far (if this were The Amazing Race, somebody would have dropped one), and put them in place on this sundial, which they unlock to remove a horn. And then an interminably long trek across the glacier and up the mountain with no river to slide on or woods to block the wind.
Stop scrolling, anti-spoiler people.
CT Gasses. The hell. Out. It’s not enjoyable to watch. And Diem’s encouragements sound suspiciously exactly the same throughout, plus she’s like 50 feet ahead of him when she’s supposedly yelling them. Let me also toss in here that her narration is a new level of grating and I’m not going to miss her craaazy eyes. More bon mots from Johnny: “CT looks like an animal that’s been shot with a tranquilizer dart.” Possibly he needed one on some previous challenges, but still.
Johnny and Camila pull ahead, like the tortoises they are not, except this one time. CT swears off smoking forever, or at least until he can earn back the $25K he gave up by coming in second place. Coincidentally, our top two couples had the most hysterical and dramatic arcs, which we get to see again in flashback. Goody. Emily and Ty bring up the rear, by which time the first and second place teams have their breath and their good moods back to cheer them on. Thankfully, we don’t have to sit through them struggling up the mountain or see Emily’s blackface during the flashback. Nice job guys. Enjoy those motivational speaking jobs you get from this.
Then we get an hour-long clip show, which is actually called Some of the Shit They’ve Already Shown with Commentary and Some of the Shit They Couldn’t Show Because They Aren’t Allowed to Show Ballsacks on TV. Also Shit that Didn’t Fit Into a Workable Plot Arc but Still Had Intrinsic Conflict Value Like Johnny Putting Bugs on People.
Check back for two full-length recaps in a couple of days! Thanks for crossing this glacier with me. It’s been better than straddling a rolling log with my ex, f’real.