This week’s episode of The Challenge features a sick Diem and a caring CT. BYO tissues.
SEASON 26 EP 3 (320th episode in the series)
Title: Love Sick (The Final Appearance of Diem)
Episode starts with everyone out at the bar/club. When they get back, CT looks for Diem, who is in the hospital. He gets upset with production, because he wants to go to the hospital and they won’t let his drunk ass go. They do get her on the phone for him and he waits up for her.
She comes back, but is still very sick and returns to the hospital seemingly the next day (tough to tell with the way the show is edited).
The entire house is pretty worried. Nia sits concerned, sucking her thumb. I really hope this is part of the Nia for TV character and she doesn’t do this in real life because it’s something she should be about 20 years past doing.
Later, (again, tough to tell when because of editing), T.J. informs the cast that Diem’s medical issues will prevent her from further participation in the game, which means CT is going home, too. He’s fine with that, as he’s more concerned about Diem. Because of her two battles with cancer, everyone knows this could be serious. As CT says, “poor girl can’t catch a break.”
CT has matured greatly and it’s clear that his friend’s fate is more important to him than anything else. He does drop a great line as he packs to leave: “Usually the only time I go home this early is if I sock someone in the face.”
Leroy adequately describes how most of the other competitors must be feeling, “…you always dream of some way to get CT out of the house, but this is not the way you wanted it to go.”
Knowing what we know now… It’s really just so sad.
The show must go on, so here we go.
The Challenge is called “On Again Off Again” because we must always be reminded this is Battle of the Exes. A 30-foot zipline goes across a pond. The goal: hold onto the zipline wheel as long as possible, fall/jump off, swim around a buoy and get to shore to ring a bell. Fastest time wins, slowest time goes straight to the dome.
Reigning power couple Nany & Bananas choose the order. They pick rookies first, of course. JJ & Simone do terribly, Simone seems to not really be able to swim.
Genius Theresa has a one hand on-top of one rope one below the other strategy that gets her hand stuck in the rope somehow. It does help her hang on for a bit. She looks like she wants to cry, but doesn’t.
When Leroy and Nia go, it’s the moment of truth: Did Leroy learn how to swim via YouTube? He’s kinda doggy paddling, but it is working. Good job, Leroy.
Top 2 times: Wes & Theresa and Sarah & Jordan.
Worst 2 times: JJ & Simone and Leroy & Nia (so I guess that swimming isn’t good enough yet).
Winners: Sarah & Jordan (15 points each)
Losers: JJ & Simone
Back at the house, Sarah is all strategy. She has a list of teams, seemingly divided by alliances. Her idea is to reinforce the Bananas v. Wes rivalry, keeping them against each other so that when things boil down, they can duck and let Bananas v. Wes go after each other.
Jordan wants Bananas in the final because of ego man reasons of beating the best or whatever. Jordan says, “…my pride is a pretty big weakness, but being too competitive can be a weakness as well.” I think he meant “and” when he said “but” – le sigh.
They have their power couple dinner. Sarah is so happy that in her 8th challenge she finally has a decent teammate and can win! It’s nice to see that she doesn’t think she’s cursed, but also concerning that she doesn’t think, “this is too good to be true… with my luck, he may lose another part of a hand!”
Wes comes for a visit so it appears like they are considering Wes and not that they have Wes in a bit of an alliance, albeit a secret one. No one seems to want to be in an open alliance with Wes.
Bananas and Nany come over. Sarah wants to see where they stand, but really just keep to her plan of reinforcing this Bananas v. Wes rivalry. Good talk everyone.
Sarah & Jordan put Brittany & Adam in for an all Are You The One? dome. T.J. is not at all surprised. It’s like he’s seen this before! There will be those who pick the low-hanging fruit.
T.J. teases at the dome that with CT & Diem out, maybe there will be a new couple (no) and maybe there will be no elimination (no again). So onwards with business as usual… again.
This dome is He Said, She Said… it’s a challenge where teams bet what their partners can eat in 3 minutes and then call each other on it. A good ol’ fashion betting/eating challenge. There are 3 rounds.
Because both of these exes have known each other for the exact same amount of time, being on the same show together and all, there’s not really an advantage of one pair knowing each other better and being able to use that knowledge to their advantage. If this were, say, Jemmye & Knight (who were actually a couple for a while) against, say, Wes & Theresa (who hooked up once), Jemmye & Knight would be at a real advantage.
The guys hide behind a wall, as they will eat first. The girls bet. First item to bid on, brownies. Just regular brownies. Not big brownies, not pot brownies, nothing weird. The girls don’t seem to believe this. Brittany thinks they may be spicy or something, she bets Adam can eat 4.
Simone sees Brittany’s 4 and bets 3. This is the same quality unintentional comic relief as last episode’s President of Wyoming Jenna-ism. I worry for the future of America with people this stupid.
Now that betting wisely is out the door… wait, also, 3? Really? Jenna could eat 3 brownies and her model-ass couldn’t take down a few tablespoons of peanut butter.
Simone calls on 7 brownies. Adam has 3 minutes to eat 7 brownies. They give him milk and everything. Not even a totally filling dessert. He finishes no problem.
T.J. thinks a more realistic number would be 27 cause “Adam killed that.” Yes, that’s our first killed it of the season (10 points).
Now the girls go behind the wall and the boys have to bet on the next food item, sticks of yucca. They don’t know what that is, but Adam correctly assumes it’s like a french fry because it is.
Yucca is a bit drier and starchier than a potato. Brittany has to each 13 and only eats 10. Now it’s tied: 1 for each incompetent Are You the One Couple.
3rd and final round: Girls bet, boys eat. The item: patacones (which are fried platains).
Simone says JJ (also being called John) can eat 11. He complains they are dry and cardboard-like. Simone & JJ’s original strategy was to bet and not eat. Wonder what happened with that. JJ only eats 7.
Knight and Zach have the rookies throw them a patacone so they can see what this is all about because these kids seem pretty weak to them. I think it’s smart that the vets wanna scout out this dome better, since in the past they’ve gone through the same dome challenges, so now they can have a better concept of the menu for this one.
Brittany & Adam celebrate their victory by getting drunk and making out (5 points each). Good episode for Adam!
Scoring for Episode 3 is noted below:
A link to the excel file is here: BOTE2 Scores – Ep3
Best player performances of the episode: Adam (40 points)
Worst player performance of the episode: Many players score 0 points.
Next week looks more exciting… making out and Nany crying instead of the viewers!