I had a new mind-set going into tonight’s “Inferno.” Normally when I see a preview that includes a possible sexual assault and a Challenge that includes third-degree burn potential, my expectations are astronomical. But as we all know from previous MTV endeavors, great expectations are typically misguided. That is, of course, assuming the word “BITCH!” and the phrase “He’s a sucky person!” are not involved.
Tonight, I decided to try something different, and I went into this evening’s “Inferno” expecting to be let down. The results were mixed, but that probably had more to do with the fact I saw the preview than anything else. After I saw the teaser following the last episode, I had some crazy scenarios running through my head all week. The one that seemed to stick was Colie getting it on with a couple of guys, Johnny Bananas coming in uninvited through the “backdoor,” insinuations of “rape” afterward, and John yelling “You can’t rape the willing!” Oh man, I was just soooooo out of line…
While this would have been an amazing development, had it actually happened, from the preview you’d think there was a double homicide in the house. Knowing this information leaves us with two choices:
1) Temper expectations two notches every week. If last week’s preview was a nine, assume the upcoming episode will be a seven.
2) Skip the preview entirely.
I’m going with the latter. Watching the preview for the following week is typically a highlight, but it’s ruining my “Inferno” experience. I truly believe if I hadn’t seen this week’s teaser, I would have graded this episode an eight, rather than a six or a seven. I encourage all of you to take the oath I just made up. Repeat after me:
“With my girlfriend as my witness (as she shakes her head in disgust):
I solemnly swear…
To never watch…
Or Liz Gateley…
That it will ruin…
My ‘Inferno III’…
And my ‘Hills’…
Much better. Hopefully next week I don’t get let down by my own idea. I’ll keep my fingers crossed. Oops, I almost forgot about the current episode. While it may not have been the best installment, I’ve definitely seen worse. That should be MTV’s slogan for this season: “The Inferno III – Hey, it’s not our best effort, but you’ve got to admit, we’ve done way worse.”
The current week started off with a bang, and Jenn led us into the mayhem with this, “You live in a house with 20 people and everyone is screwed up in some sort of way. It’s a madhouse.” I couldn’t agree more, but I couldn’t help but try and figure out what Jenn meant by “screwed up.” Did she mean they were drunk, high, or just plain crazy? I’m bubbling in “D,” for “All of the above.”
I wish I could adequately explain what was happening. The best way I can describe the wild partying at the house is a mess of blurred-out asses and belly flops amid heavy drinking and petting. I guess Tonya was getting on Kenny’s nerves, because he randomly interrupted the montage, saying, “Tonya doesn’t shut the hell up, so what can we do with her besides throw her in the pool? You can’t burn her at the stake; they gave that up a couple of hundred years ago.” Kenny is definitely still a rookie, because as we all know from past “Challenges,” the guys take care of this problem by simply having sex with her.
Ace used this lull in the action to explain his intentions for the “Challenge,” “I don’t care about winning money, I don’t care about winning any type of prizes, I want to prove to myself that I can make it the entire time.” HA! Fat chance of that, pal. I don’t know what is more disturbing, the fact that Ace didn’t come on the show to win money, or the fact that he takes pride in being a strong competitor on a Challenge.
The next thing we saw was Tonya staring at Ace’s naked behind, and her saying, “I’ve seen a lot of naked asses in my life.” No shit. That might have been the understatement of the year. After that, Danny shared a few thoughts regarding the evening’s activities, “You’ve got everyone kinda just having fun which is great, but there’s a lot of drunken idiots in the house.” Man, everyone’s stating the obvious tonight. I think he intended for this to be condescending toward everyone except him, but unfortunately for Danny, MTV coupled this quote with him diving in the pool and excitedly yelling about how he saved his beer. Idiot.
All good things must come to an end though, and suddenly the partying was interrupted by the familiar jingle of an incoming clue. The producers must read TVGasm, because for some reason tonight they declined to show any mention of the texting device, and just immediately started showing an upstairs/downstairs unison-reading of the clue. Thanks guys, we love you too. Upstairs, Paula handled the announcement while lying around in her skivvies, along with a similarly underwear-clad Cara. When I was 12, I got yelled at for spying on my sister’s slumber party, because I expected to see a bunch of girls running around having pillow fights in their underwear and making out with each other. I was told, “Girls don’t do that stuff at slumber parties. You watch way too much TV.” Girls are such liars! Regrettably, MTV left the room before they started practicing kissing.
With a men’s Inferno coming up, Cara had some thoughts on whom she would like to see get nominated. “I hope that the Bad Asses choose Ace to go into the Inferno. He’s a nice guy, but he’s not here to compete, he’s here to party and to play. He’s probably not going to do much for us.” Since when did Cara become Joe – err – Jill Challenge? Also, what does Cara bring to the table that Ace doesn’t? A “Playboy” spread? Ace needs to make an alliance with a teammate ASAP.
Cara and the rest of the women seemed to be taking this Challenge very seriously, and they all headed off to bed at a reasonable hour. The men on the other hand, did not… We were then greeted by a view of a full moon, and some eerie music, so you can all guess what was about to happen next. Susie gave us the introduction, “At about 3 a.m., Ace, Danny, and Johnny Bananas come into my room playing music very loudly.” How dare they! The next thing we saw was Colie screaming, the guys banging ladders off of the girls’ beds, and Susie holding her hand through a camera lens that can only be described as “A Night in Paris”-esque. Susie continued narrating during the grainy footage: “Ace starts climbing the ladder of my bunkbed, and I start pummeling Ace with fists. He falls to the floor, and they leave.”
The next morning… Wait, that’s it??? Where the hell was the video of Susie “pummeling Ace with fists?” This is getting ridiculous, there have been two major physical confrontations on the challenge so far, and somehow the camera guys managed to miss both of them? If MTV really does read this recap, I demand that someone takes the fall for this. We’ll start a collection here at TVGasm for execs’ severance package.
The next morning, cooler heads hadn’t prevailed, and Cara started complaining about how the girls have no privacy. Sorry sweetheart, you’re on a reality show. Get over it. Cara wasn’t finished though, and she began yelling at Johnny Bananas, “You’re out of line! You’re totally out of line! This whole thing has gotten way out of line!” YES! The first “Kiss my goddamn ass!” catchphrase for the season. Poor Cara, she’s never going to live this one down. You are all out of line! This whole country is out of line! My enjoyment of this line is EXTREMELY out of line!
Apparently Susie wasn’t the only one violated, because Colie was BS for some reason, “Johnny touched me last night and shook my bed. He touched me, and I didn’t touch him back, and he shouldn’t have touched me in the first place!” This infuriated Banana boy, causing him to yell back, “Don’t come on these fucking shows if you can’t fucking handle being around people who want to have fun.” Spoken like a true rapist right there. Colie was definitely making eyes at him while she was sleeping. I kept waiting for John to say something like, “Well, you shouldn’t have been acting like such a slut while you were sleeping unless you planned on having sex with me.”
The attention quickly turned back to Susie beating up Ace. What did Ace do? Did he get in Susie’s bed and start trying to make out with her? I mean, he must have done something serious to cause Susie to start belting him, right? I’ll let Ace explain: “When she lied and said that she felt threatened like I was going to do something to her, that really, really hurt. There was no fucking way in hell I was being threatening. I’ve never been slapped in the face in my life. I was singing ‘Air Supply – Making Love Out of Nothing At All,’ and I got slapped in the face four times as hard as she could hit me? Now ya’ll can sit there and tell me ‘whatever’ all day long, but that’s not right.” HAHAHAH. Man, now I really wish we could have seen the actual altercation. That would have been priceless. The best part about Ace’s defense was how upset he seemed that he was just singing “Air Supply.” If you haven’t seen it, I suggest you go to MTV.com and check out the stream. It truly gets funnier every time.
Ok, so if Ace was simply singing “Air Supply,” then why the hell was Susie so upset? This was Colie’s defense of Susie’s actions: “You say to someone, ‘Stop, stop, stop, stop stop. Go away, go away, go away, go away,’ and they don’t stop, some people are left with no other choice.” Great rationale ladies, the next time your boyfriends tell you to stop doing something, and you don’t, you won’t have to look very far for an explanation of why they cracked you across the face. I’m not an advocate of domestic violence on any level, but Ace REALLY didn’t deserve to get whacked by Susie. In essence, Ace and Johnny just messed up the girls’ beauty sleep, and now they were all fuming. I’m chalking up Colie’s accusation that Johnny touched her inappropriately as a massive overreaction as well. If Bananas really did something of that magnitude to Colie, it would have been talked about a little more than a passing interaction between the two of them. After they went back and forth once, it was never talked about again for the rest of the episode, while Ace being slapped remained the focal point. I’m leaning toward siding with the guys on this one.
As I mentioned above, Ace getting slapped remained the hot topic around the house. After the morning’s screaming match ended, it was finally time to hear the actual “victim’s” side of the story. Now that I think of it, where the hell was Susie during the morning argument? Wasn’t she the one who was actually involved in the incident? I guess Cara is her spokesperson. Anyway, Susie stated, “Why don’t they feel bad? They act like they didn’t touch my bed and shake it.” OK, I’m not just leaning toward siding with the guys now, I’m on full-fledged tilt. “If I ask you to leave and you don’t, if I yell at you to leave and you don’t, if I swear at you to leave and you don’t, how do I get you to leave if I want you to leave?” I’m now officially on Team Men (read: immature boys).
I’ve got a couple questions: Where are the producers? Why didn’t anybody escort “little meek Susie” off the premises for her violence? Granted, it is a little different than giving someone a black eye, but this was right along those lines. First they let Jenn cheat, now they allow Susie to take four shots at Ace without repercussions? CT’s probably preparing his lawsuit as we speak, “Somebody get Dane Shulman on the line, this is faaackin’ retahhded!”
Since Susie wasn’t getting the boot, things would need to be patched up in Camp Good Guy before the next challenge. Naturally, like any loving father, Timmy spoke to both his bickering children and advised them to hash it out. Susie was all for the peace, but Ace was still pretty pissed. He was just singing “Air Supply” for Christ’s sake! Alton could tell Ace wanted to let it go, and stated, “I feel that Ace just wants this whole thing to go away, and the easiest way for him to not talk about it anymore is to just pretend like it didn’t happen.” Fantastic advice! Alton should be a counselor for domestic violence victims. “If your boyfriend hits you again, just let it go! I mean, is it really worth fighting about it? If you just pretend like it never happened, everything will go back to normal!”
Since nothing was settled back at the house, the Good Guys had to try and put their differences aside when they arrived at the new challenge. TJ greeted the two teams (looking more stoned than usual) and explained the rules. I would let TJ take us through them, but I don’t feel like being here all day again. Basically, each team chose three people to be suspended on a platform, which was being held up by a rope that was tied down on the opposing team’s side. The object of the game was to use materials that were located on a barge to burn the rope, so the opposing team’s three suspended members would go crashing into the water – almost like a dunk tank at a carnival. The barge had all sorts of materials for building fires on it: logs, kindling, batteries, matches, hay, steel woo, etc. The only difficult part was getting the materials from the barge to dry land without getting them wet. The three suspended members also had buckets of water to pour on the opposing team’s materials. This was actually a pretty cool challenge. Here’s to hoping someone gets roasted.
The rules were simple enough, but the only problem was the Good Guys couldn’t decide who to make sit on the platform. They eventually wound up drawing straws, and Alton, Timmy and Susie wound up having to sit around idly waiting to get dunked. Uh-oh. That meant Ace, Davis and Bananas were going to be running the show. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the Good Guys were in a little trouble. Ace was thrilled about the opportunity to redeem himself, but I will be shocked if he actually does well. Don’t forget to release the e-brake buddy. I said this in a comment last week, but does Ace remind anyone else of the dumb cowboy from “Casino” that let a slot machine hit three straight jackpots before taking it out of play?
“Listen, you fuckin’ yokel. I’ve been carrying your ass ever since I got here. If you didn’t know, you’re too fuckin’ dumb. If you did know, you were in on it. Either way, you’re out.”
“I think you’re overreacting. This is not the way to treat people. I was just minding my own business singing ‘Air Supply!’ ”
After the Good Guys put their faith in their three weakest men, the Bad Asses needed to do some pre-challenge strategizing. Danny tried giving some advice, but he was quickly interrupted by Kenny of all people. “Dude, we listened to you on the fucking battering ram, and look where that got us.” Kenny must have sucked at “Memory” when he was a kid… The challenge started up, and both teams starting swimming toward the barge. I don’t know why, but it seemed like no one was showing any concern for keeping the materials above the water. After most of the materials had been brought to shore, Davis decided to step up and bring the matches over. As expected, he promptly dunked them. Johnny Bananas managed to keep an entire pile of logs dry, yet Davis couldn’t keep a handful of matches dry. You ARE the weakest link… Luckily for the Good Guys, the Bad Asses accidentally soaked their matches as well, so this challenge was shaping up as a stalemate.
Fortunately for all of us, Danny attended grammar school, “I went to 4th grade, and I learned that a battery and steel wool make fire.” I must have been at recess during “Random Techniques for Creating Fire” class. Danny’s brainstorm didn’t seem to be working out, and he began ‘Roid Raging, “How is it that we have four smokers on our team, and we can’t start a fire?” Gee Danny, I don’t know. Maybe next year for Christmas I’ll buy my friends Duracells and Brillo Pads instead of Zippos.
Since the teams were struggling, TJ announced a clue: “You need to thicken the steel wool.” The Good Guys immediately heeded this advice, but the Bad Asses must have decided the clue was for chumps, because they continued trying to use a thin piece of steel wool. Take a wild guess how this one turned out. Before you knew it, the Good Guys had a massive blaze going, and Bad Asses were looking at each other like a bunch of idiots. It didn’t take long for the Good Guys rope to shred, and they won the challenge with room to spare. After the loss, the Bad Asses continued pointing fingers. Hermey the Misfit Elf declared, “Danny tries to assume a leadership role very frequently in these challenges. A lot of the time his ideas just don’t work.” Listen, I hate Danny as much as the next guy, but are the Bad Asses deaf? It seems to me like Danny was the only who actually knew that steel wool and batteries could make fire. Who would the Bad Asses rather have giving instructions? Kenny? Abram? Hell, if Kenny had his way, they would have used Tonya instead of kindling.
Back at the house, the teams needed to make their anticlimactic decisions of whom to send from the opposing team into the Inferno. The Good Guys actually started overanalyzing things – definitely uncharted waters for a Challenge. Abram was the initial choice, but King Alton seemed a little hesitant. However, he did state, “Of course my team wants to nominate Abram. If he goes home, then that is a huge, huge, huge hamstring for the Bad Asses.” What I can’t figure out is whether Alton is just really dumb and was referring to the hamstring muscle, or whether he was inferring that losing Abram would be a restriction for the Bad Asses. I like Alton, so I’ll give him credit for not being a complete idiot.
The Good Guys wound up changing their mind and going with Danny, because “he’s the brains of their operation.” Wow, if Danny truly is the brains of their operation, the Bad Asses are in more trouble than I originally thought. Alton even used the phrase “calm and composed” while describing Danny during Challenges. No joke necessary here.
The Bad Asses weren’t having as much trouble making their decision, and they immediately narrowed it down to Davis and Ace. This didn’t stop Danny from running his mouth. “I’m not scared to go against Alton. If I go against Alton, I’m going to send Alton home.” Keep telling yourself that, pal. Unless the “Inferno” entails shingling roofs or growing herpes, Danny’s not beating Alton at anything.
The Bad Asses didn’t come to a consensus, so I guess their decision will be the “climax” of the episode. Up first in the house’s basement, I mean “trophy room,” were the Bad Asses, and they announced their selection of Davis. Simply riveting. The Good Guys then announced their pick of Danny. Instead of the episode ending, there was still the matter of Ace and Susie mending their friendship. This was accomplished by a simple “I’m sorry” from Susie. While this was going on, Danny was outside pacing around, picking at his cold sore, and complaining about not being respected. Whatever. Next week looks pretty boring; there wasn’t even a single ‘WOW” moment in the previews. The “Next Time” guy must be losing his touch. I know, I know, I wasn’t supposed to watch the previews, but I couldn’t help myself. I needed to know! I knew they were coming, yet I still couldn’t look away. Somebody schedule me an intervention, because I’m hooked on the previews. We’ll try the whole “skip the previews” thing next week…
What did you guys think about this episode? Was the fight a letdown? What do you really think happened with Colie and Bananas? There WAS a possible awkward moment between the two of them that was glanced over during the Good Guy deliberations. Maybe something did happen? I’ll see you on the boards.