Kooky close-up of a streetlamp/yardlamp on the property. Exterior of the pool while a semi-literate dude voice-overs “Men. Verse. Women.” The women put their hands together and go “panty power” with as much enthusiasm as if those panties were product-placed.
Are those crusty bikinis around their wrists to simulate Wonder Woman bracelets?
The “men” fill buckets with water from the sink. They throw one on – I think - Diem, who tumbles down the stairs rather comically, and another on Emily, who protests that she’s an innocent bystander. Cara Maria ties the boys’ door closed, unsuccessfully. Johnny throws a wet sweatshirt or towel toward her and misses. CT crows about prevailing over evildoers. I’m not sure why I’m bothering to recap this part. I guess it’s the Fun Montage. Pretty pathetic-looking.
Meanwhile, Abram is brooding in another room. He’s drawing some comic book art on a T-shirt, some snarling, drooling, hairy monster thing. Cara Maria sort of shoves his head and tries to get Happy Abe, who she imagined once, or maybe glimpsed after an orgasm, to appear. He doesn’t comply and tells her to beat it. She VOs that he’s being
a dick really serious. She suggests he be more social. He states that he’s not gonna be jovial and happy around people who are just gonna screw him over. Ah, except that it’s a game and that’s what they’re there to do. “I like you, but…” he says, and then accuses her of not listening.
If you didn’t bring me a new Sharpie, what good are you?
I am not liking the dynamic of this relationship. I don’t know why I would expect to, but it actually makes me uncomfortable, as it seems emotionally abusive. Both here and in the little pre-show preview interview clip, he seems to be constantly blaming her for some vaguely defined transgression, while she apologizes for not being able to make him happy. I get frustrated just looking at them. She deserves better. She calls their relationship manic in the confessional. I would diagnose it as more borderline, but dumb psych docs everywhere have been mixing the two conditions up for decades, so I won’t hold it against her. The goods of said ‘ship are very good, and the bads are awful, she confessionalizes. He berates her again and tells her to go screw off. What a little bitch he is. He can’t just own his feelings of shittiness and say, “I feel bad right now, and I want to be alone.”
Go teach Naomi how to do a nice smoky eye or something.
Living room. Dustin lies dorkily on the couch while Heather puts a cold compress on his knee and some of the guys offer various home remedies. “Scalpel,” she doctors, and then they show us a black-and-white “dramatization” POV of a drunk person going up some stairs by the pool, and he explains that he wiped out while doing so. He says he can see his kneecap, but it’s not visible in the close-up they kindly show us. A guy, I think Johnny, offers to suck the poison out. Dustin goes to get stitches, planning to get back in the game as soon as possible. It rains ominously. A stitched-up Dustin seems to think the show is going to wait a week for his knee to heal. Wha’d I tellya? It was only a matter of time before this team’s cuteness failed them.
I get painkillers, right?
Aneesa announces there’s a new message from TJ, unable to say the name of the phone device with a straight face. “Prepare to go in head first.” Spoiler – she totally does. This time they’re meeting at the lagoon rather than the beach.
Lagoon. Trees and stuff. Four flat boards on a rocky shore area about 25 feet above the water level. We will soon see that these boards have a kind of springy see-saw action to them. TJ greets the cast, and dude, he’s gotta send Dustin home for medical reasons, man. Heather, as his partner, is SOL. They take it like troupers. Aw, it might have been cool if they had tried to make Heather and Sarah act as a team. They might not have lasted, but they would have put in a good effort.
Dude, where’s Team Z-cup? I did what now?
So, our shitheads are going to lie on these high platforms. They will be asked some laughable trivia questions about People magazine-type coupling and uncoupling news, previous Challenges, random facts, and spelling. An incorrect answer will swing the platform into a vertical position and get them launched into the water below. HARD. TJ doesn’t mention the hard, but as I said in the Minicap, it’s a new degree of brutal, especially since none of them ever claimed to be close to smart.
Leroy and Naomi pick the order. Because Abram is such a nice guy, he and CM get chosen to go first, alongside Paula and Dunbar. Abram bitches about this choice and promises to make Leroy and Naomi sorry. I’m sure they’re already plenty sorry they know him.
Dunbar and Paula sail through questions about Brad Pitt’s and Jessica Simpson’s exes, respectively. Then Abram gets asked who Britney Spears’ ex and babydaddy is. I seriously thought everyone knew this. I’ll bet my 65-year-old mom knows it. But I guess Abram was too busy getting tattooed to watch Chaotic, or any entertainment news ever in the mid-00s. I mean, I think Britney and K-Fed got jokes made about them on Law & Order, even. Not that he’d watch that voluntarily…
I’m too complicated to watch TV about other people.
“Baby I’m sorry. Aaron… Drake,” says Abe. Who is that even supposed to be? Sprong! Into the water he goes. I’ll bet he knows all the words to that Linkin Park song about being nothing.
So they wear helmets to scrape honey off each other but not for this?
Cara Maria is asked about Madonna’s famous ex and star of I Am Sam and Milk. She gets it half right with Guy Ritchie. Is that question insinuating Ritchie’s not famous? Ouch. In CM’s defense, Madge and Sean probably divorced before she was born. Mr. Tube, forced by proximity to listen to the show, says this is no excuse for CM not to know. But I disagree, considering pop culture is designed to be forgotten the following week. Interesting, though, that Sean Penn is kind of a volatile brooding asshole and Madonna hides her insecurities behind too much makeup and wacky hair. CM hits the water face first.
Dunbar flubs a question about TJ’s first season, like that dude is memorable. He also goes face first. Teej keeps apologizing and saying things like “ooh, that’s raw,” all the time grinning like a big old stoner. Paula gets the next two questions right, naming the season of The Gulag and spelling “calculator.” Those on the ground are sufficiently impressed. Then she gets a before-she-was-born question about JFK’s killer. And she gets her history book pages mixed up and comes up with John Wilkes Booth. I’m not gonna be too rough on her for that one. Yes, I’m grading on a curve, but there’s a cosmic link between Lincoln and Kennedy, right? There’s this whole list of similarities, right, elected in ’60, succeeded by Johnson, civil rights, got shot…
It was that dude with three names and a gun…
Paula lands in the water with a smack and calls for help. The kids on the ground genuinely clap for her, and not because of her swan dive. She and Dunbar are happy with their performance.
Ty & Emily vs Tyrie & Jasmine. Correctly answered questions concern Chris Brown & Rihanna, Cameron Diaz & Justin Timberlake, and Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman. Then poor Jasmine gets one about the only Inferno season to take place in Africa. She answers The Inferno when it’s actually The Inferno 3. She wants to get half a point for this, which I guess would mean getting launched toward the water and then caught? “Way to stay tight though. I like that.” says Teej, uncomfortingly. Ty leaves out the “a” in “significance” to illustrate what texting has wrought. Down he goes. Then Emily has Michael Jordan leaving basketball to play golf. Down she goes. Ty and Emily are satisfied to have more than zero points. Tyrie gives Picasso the credit for lopping off his ear. Eh, at least he’s an artist.
It was during his blue period…
Johnny & Camila vs CT & Diem. Johnny correctly answers Mark Anthony for J-Lo’s recent ex. Camila gets this one: In 2010, Hugh Hefner announced he would be ditched the following year by which Playboy Bunny? “Bob Marley” she says. Nice. If I ever am lucky enough to be on a trivia show and then unlucky enough to not know an answer, I’m borrowing that one.
Seriously though. What if Hef & Bob Marley mated?
CT & Diem correctly answer questions about Ryan Reynolds & Scarlett Johansen and Julia Roberts & Lyle Lovett. Johnny correctly answers an Inferno question. CT bombs and gets launched on a question about a Challenge involving Danny and Melinda. Apparently, he was on the Challenge in question, which Johnny points out. Heh. CT appears to land on the back of his neck but not feel it. Diem gets a question about Tori and Brad on Duel II correct. Then Johnny is asked an Oscar question. Oh show, the kids don’t care about the Oscars, and neither do I. Not since they started making movies four hours long. But now I know The King’s Speech won Best Picture last year. I guess I was dimly aware. But why store knowledge that doesn’t interest you if you’re not in school? Get over yourself, Academy. Diem chokes on the spelling of etiquette, spelling it like it’s manners demonstrated by a guy named Ed.
Guess how she lands?
Leroy and Naomi strategize, wasting valuable brain cells they turn out to need. Leroy & Naomi vs Rachel & Aneesa. Poor Leroy gets a question about Jerry Hall, which I maintain that anyone born after 1980 is likely to think is a dude. And this question doesn’t even have a clue in it. Like, they should have said, what Rolling Stone did she marry? I wonder if that was supposed to be a bonus round question. Bad idea for Leroy and Naomi to put themselves at this point in the order I guess. Leroy refuses to be creative: “I don’t know.” He executes a nice flip into the water, and then explains that he doesn’t listen to rock ‘n’ roll, which I don’t think they make anymore anyway. Naomi is similarly felled by her tender age, getting a Sonny & Cher question wrong. On land, she tries to pick a fight with Leroy and fails at that, too. Rachel gets a Bobby Brown & Whitney Houston question. Aww, timely and sad. Aneesa, who I guess is younger than she looks, puts Billy Joel with Kate Moss, which might have been good for both of them, who knows?
Aneesa appears to land hard on both her face and crotch. You can see something in her mouth isn’t right when she starts yelling from the water. As she climbs out, she spits out a small handful of blood. Camila gets a medic. Commercials.
We’re back! Ominous flashback in b/w to five minutes ago! Aneesa has pieces of her teeth in her mouth! Rachel gets an Island/Duel question, a Johnny Depp question, and a 13 colonies question right! Then she flubs the spelling of “auditorium.” Splash.
Mark & Robin. Mark gets an Ellen & Anne Heche question right. Robin proves that people don’t care about Kate Hudson and nobody bothered to learn Chris Robinson’s name. Mark forgets the color of Nate & Prissy’s shirts. Splash and splash.
Yellow, the natural color of my hair
Tiebreaker. Power Couple-off will be Aneesa & Rachel vs Dunbar & Paula, but Aneesa is out of commission for this round, though not out of the challenge. Abram & CM vs Leroy & Naomi for biggest loosah. Abe growls about “What is wrong this time, CM? Why are you crying?” This time? Maybe this time she doesn’t want to lose, like anyone wouldn’t, and maybe she feels dumb, like she should, and maybe every other time, Abe, it was because you’re an insufferable dick. Don’t try and act like everything’s hunky-dory with you all of a sudden, you god-awful, self-centered, ignorant douche-nozzle.
Paula is high on herself, waving her finger around and saying Rachel will have to be doubly brilliant to beat her and Dunbar’s wise minds. Pfft. Rachel notes that she basically went alone the last round. What a sweetie. Dunbar flubs the capital of Alabama. I would’ve guessed Sweet Home. Paula gets Goldilocks’ cereal of choice right, although Mark and CT try to steer her off with Frosted Flakes and Lucky Charms. Rachel is asked what a female deer is, and d’oh! She misses. So much for being doubly brilliant. Paula gets to walk down from the platforms.
He reminds me of Charlie Sheen. That’s not a compliment.
Suck-off. Abe correctly completes, “Birds of a feather… flock together.” CM knows that Jaws was about a shark. “FML,” she says. Naomi misses that vixen is a female fox. I thought a vixen was a female hussy. And I’d probably break a hip falling into that water. Thank goodness for real jobs. Naomi claims that New York City schools only teach colors and letters, not animals, which is sure to come as a surprise to the Bronx Zoo. Shut up Naomi. You have overstayed your welcome. Abe gets the Wright brothers right. CM wrongly guesses that it’s pasta that’s all stuck together in risotto. Leroy answers a question about Sleeping Beauty with “Me and Naomi are going to The Dome,” and Abram walks down. Woo! Wait, no, he should get nothing and like it.
Paula and Dunbar survey their kingdom. They ask Ty and Emily why they shouldn’t go into The Dome. Emily notes that Naomi is not very good at challenges, and she shouldn’t be put up against a girl like Emily who will send her home; she should stay so she can continue to lose. Ty alludes to a future in which he and Emily get Power Couple and can maybe do something nice for Paula & Dunbar.
But we’re also cool with handing your ass to you in a couple of weeks.
Abe plays with barbells while CM sits on an exercise ball and watches. Now, how did he get those awful scars? I’m picturing him breaking a bottle on the ground and dragging it across his chest in some sort of attention-grab. Let’s see what the Google has to say about it.
It was a bear, an alligator, and/or a Native American rite of passage? Really made him appreciate all living things.
Abram’s backstory, sort of.
“Why shouldn’t you guys go into the dome?” Paula asks CM and Abe. CM points out that Emily has the strength of 10 men, or something like that, and that putting Emily into The Dome, sparing CM to be bested later, is in Paula’s best interest. Power Couple, says Paula, is not as awesome as she expected it to be.
Oh, boo freaking hoo
Diem tells Abe her story, which I daresay everyone tuning in at this point already knows. Bla bla bla cancer, bla bla CT made my bald ass feel desirable again bla. And then bla bla I told him we needed to take a break for about five years so I could bla bla career. Even my computer doesn’t want to watch this scene. It keeps skipping back to people being launched into the water.
Abe is legitimately flummoxed by the way Diem’s behavior flew in the face of logic. I’m kind of impressed that he grasps this, actually, but I’m sure he’s just relating it to himself and how stupid any woman would have to be to leave him or CT. Why would someone do that? What’s not to like about overgrown infants who like to punch people? But I do appreciate that Abe basically calls Diem a dumbass. I mean, maybe she was trying to get some sympathy from a fellow cray-cray, but nope! So good on ol’ marker-tats for that, at least.
She dumped him! Cause she was in looove with him!
As I expected, Abe has now put his face on these characters. He bitches in VO about how CM is always keeping him at a distance. The pre-show interview in which he walks off with his mic dragging suggests it’s the other way around. If she’s putting distance between you, Abe, it’s probably her last molecule of self-preservation looking out for her sanity. Now go get distant from my TV.
Teej time! His shirt has the title of a Wiz Khalifa song, among other things, on it. Power couple take their thrones. Paula is wearing the inside of my purse. Bla bla, difficult, not a lot of options, bla. But they’re putting in Emily and Ty, because they’re hoping The Dome challenge is decided by which woman is a bigger stalker and nothing else. Leroy and Naomi go to their room for some positive thinking. That’s not a euphemism. I guess Leroy sees the writing on the wall and figures he can afford to be friendly during his last days in the house, and then change his name and go live in Belize or something.
“Still being positive, but I would love nothing more than to spit in Paula’s face.”
Emily and Ty are just the opposite. She tries to get him to hang out or do something. He’s not having it. Flashback to his crushing and apparently humiliating defeat in Cutthroat. Maybe dude just wants to get some rest. And what’s there to do? Chase each other around the pool?
Bongs of Destiny. It’s Domer Time! Emily thanks Paula before the group. Ty appears to have freshly shaven his own dome for the occasion. Tonight’s challenge will be called Put a Rubber on It, or something. The teams will be rubber-banded to one another, and this band will be stretched around a pole. Teammates must advance forward toward another pole, with the band getting pulled tighter and tighter. The goal pole needs to be grabbed and held by both team members simultaneously for five seconds.
And there is nothing but sand to slide on
Off they go. Ty gets to the pole fairly quickly, while Leroy hangs back and lets Naomi advance first, so she doesn’t have to deal with as much pullback from the rubber band. Ty eventually figures this out, but not before Emily tries to get to the pole by grabbing his hand, his harness, and his head.
…and then practically mounting him.
Points for practicality on her part, and points on his part for having faith in her, or maybe just not understanding how rubber bands work.
Naomi, meanwhile, has come to a standstill midway through the course.
Seems like it should be a metaphor for something…
Rather than getting further ahead, Naomi’s just digging herself deeper into the sand as she tries to move forward. Leroy continues to hang back. The sideline folks scream for their favorites. It’s not looking good for Leroy and Naomi. They try to make us think for a second that Ty and Emily might crap out, but that’s not happening. Slowly but surely, with Ty pulling back a bit, they both grab the goal pole.
Paula frets about Emily’s good memory. Yeah, I think she’ll remember this for years. She definitely won’t forget in a couple of weeks. Paula offers, to the camera at least, to make Emily breakfast. I’d totally take her up on that, whether I was gonna be benevolent in the future or not. Just make sure she cooks those eggs all the way through.
These bicep pits brought to you by Thighmaster.
Crappy couple of the week. Abe and Cara Maria sit and sort of hold each other back at the house. He appears to be reciting some words to her without much feeling. He says he can’t just roll his eyes and walk away. Well, why not? I think it would be better for both of them. Forgive me if I don’t have the gist of their convo exactly right, but I’m done rewinding it. I’m done with them. Cara Maria will make some weirdo biker nature dude or girl very happy, and they will ride off on their horses into the sunset. She needs to lose that zero, now. She sort of rolls her eyes and smiles into the middle distance as Abram’s all, words words words. “I feel like I’m chasing after a girl that doesn’t want to get caught,” he confessionalizes. Again, this contradicts the pre-show clip, in which she claimed to have wanted to make the relationship official and stated that she asked him where he wanted to move to. And then, most likely, widdle baby Abe clammed up and got mad at her ’cause of some delusion of betrayal or something. Doesn’t want to get caught? Try chasing her with something other than a hammer, Abe, you tool.
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