Last week on The Biggest Loser, we said goodbye to Nicole, who we learned has lost a total of 91 pounds. Nicole’s departure left Neil as the last Blue Team member standing….and
Bob’sthe Blue Team’s position in the finals hanging by a thread. So far, the players have lost a total of 1,098 pounds on the Biggest Loser campus. One more player goes home tonight and, mercifully, they’ve abandoned the 2 hour episodes….at least for one week. Damn that writers’ strike! *shakes fist*
This week, we begin with Bob and Neil. I’m always happy to begin any episode – nay, anything – with Bob. Because it’s the last week in the house, Bob is really feeling the pressure. Neil is just p.o.’ed about the Black Teamers strutting around the house like they own the place. He vows to pick them off one-by-one.
Meanwhile, Jillian is training her minions out on the sand. Yet again, they talk about how they weren’t chosen by the other teams three months ago. Jeez, talk about an inferiority complex. Each of the remaining Black Team members talks about how far they’ve come since day one (when they didn’t get picked for the other teams…) and Jillian urges them on: her job is to make sure they are the last four players standing.
In gym, while Neil runs on the treadmill, Bob takes Neil back to week one and reminds him of how far he’s come. We see flashbacks of a 400 pound Neil at the beginning of the show. It’s really pretty incredible how much smaller Neil is now. He vows not to let anyone get in his way on the road to the finals.
Brought to You By…
Since tonight’s show is only an hour this week, it’s already time for the challenge. The players meet Alison out on what looks like a construction site: there’s a row of bulldozers and there are piles of dirt everywhere. Over the last 13 weeks, Ali tells them, they’ve lost lots of weight that they probably never want to see again. This week, they’ll get the chance to bury that weight. Forever. Let me just say this: I hate the fact that there are so many corporate sponsors on this show. This week’s challenge is brought to us by Quaker Oatmeal. Note to self: go buy a different brand of oatmeal just to spite NBC.
Here it is: the last challenge of the season that I will be forced to attempt to describe. This show gets more and more like Survivor with each passing season. At least the contestants don’t have to walk through some jungle of fast food while surrounded by pictures of eliminated contestants. This is the challenge where the players have to carry the weight they’ve lost while on the show. Ali directs their attention to five lanes with 13 stops (one for each week they've been on the Biggest Loser campus) spaced evenly along the way. The players will have to drag a giant (and super fake) bathroom scale down the course. At each of the 13 stops are weights equivalent to the amount of weight they lost that week. They must load all the weights onto their scale and then drag the scale back to the beginning of the course. Once there, they must toss the weights and then the scale into a hole and then wave a flag. At that point, all the dirt in the bulldozer at the end of their lane will be dumped on top of their weight. It’s all very symbolic.
Alison reveals that the winner of this challenge will receive a prize that will help ease their transition back to the real world: $10,000. Yeah, $10,000 would make anything easier. Bill is totally confident. He’s the one to beat and is already counting the money, he boasts.
You know, I could give you the blow-by-blow on this challenge and it would all be very, well, boring. I’ll just cut to the chase. Isabeau wins the challenge and the $10K. She says covering the weight with dirt was a huge relief: it was like saying goodbye to her old self. Bill, who finished right behind Isabeau, says he literally ate her dust when the bulldozer dumped the dirt into the hole. He probably needed that little ego check. Even though Isabeau won, the other players still finish the race. Alison tells them that, between the five of them, they buried 436 pounds. Neil looks forward to burying the next 130 pounds of himself as well.
Soon enough, it’s time for the last chance workout. Bob vows to do everything he can to keep Neil above the Yellow Line. This last workout is for the entire Blue Team, Neil promises.
Meanwhile, Jillian takes her people through their last chance workout. Unfortunately for Jill, her trainees aren’t nearly as obedient as she’d like. Isabeau refuses to run at the rate Jillian sets on the treadmill. Jill fumes over being told “no” and tries a pep talk to get Isabeau to bend to her will. When I say “pep talk,” I really mean “attempt to crush her spirit.” In spite of the fact that Jillian is in league with the devil, Isabeau claims she’ll miss Mistress Jillian. She says Jill has given them all hope….of escape. (<---subliminal message) Isabeau then inflates Jillian’s ego further by admitting that Jillian is always right.
It’s already time for the weigh in. I love these one hour shows!
Neil: 278 (10 lbs /143 lbs total) 3.47%
That makes 11 weeks out of 14 that Neil’s weight loss was in the double digits.
Hollie: 191 (5 lbs / 64 lbs total) 2.55%
Bill: 204 (9 lbs / 130 lbs total) 4.23%
Julie: 160 (8 lbs / 58 lbs total) 4.76%
Isabeau: 217 (8 lbs / 81 lbs total) 3.56%
Neil’s face tells the story – he knows he’s out. As Isabeau cries with joy over her weight loss this week, Hollie stands behind her looking sour and disappointed. Bill is in disbelief that, in spite of a 10 pound weight loss, Neil still fell below the Yellow Line.
The next morning, it’s time to break the news to Bob. Wah. He walks in to meet with Neil wearing a baby blue button down shirt. I swoon. Bob knows right away that the news is bad. He apologizes to Neil and Neil immediately tells him there is no reason to apologize. He tells Bob that they never lost sight of their goal: to change his life. Bob tells us that Neil he deserves to be in the final: he’s been so determined. Neil lost all of his teammates and has been up there on that scale every week losing the weight for all of them. He says Neil feels like he’s let his entire team down. Bob assures Neil that he’s not leaving a loser: he’s leaving a winner and his family will be so proud of him. The smurfy Bob that I love so much tells Neil to look at himself and realize what he’s done. He’s never going to be 400 pounds again. A tearful Neil says Bob has given him his life back. *sniffle*
A Mere Formality
Alison welcomes everyone to the final elimination. They began this experience with 18 people and they’re about to narrow that number down to four. One of those four, Ali reminds them, will win $250,000. Now it’s time to watch Neil get voted out and for the others to gloat.
Bill says he’s got the utmost respect for both Neil and Hollie, but one of them could come back and keep him from winning the show. With much respect, Bill votes for Neil.
Isabeau says she’s glad that both Neil and Hollie made it this far, because they’ve both mad this experience for her. She then rambles on about forgiving but not forgetting and voting for those people who stood up for her. She then seals Neil’s fate and votes for his elimination.
Since rambling on and making little sense seems to be on the menu today, Neil gets in on the action as well. He talks about how every dog has it’s day and says the show has been an incredible run for him. He’s not sad about going home: there are lots of smiling faces waiting for him at home, especially one very special girl. Neil has no regrets and wishes them all the best, saying it’s been an honor and a privilege to share this experience with them. He then says goodbye with a smile on his face. No one even stands up though, as Neil takes an ice cream sundae out of his fridge and gives it to Bill.
Hollie smiles smugly over being in the final four. Ali informs them that this is the first time that only one team has made it to the final four. Their team has dominated the game and won the competition, Ali says. Now they just have to face the giant scale one more time: at the finale. Ali tells them she can’t wait to see them all at the final and wishes them all good luck.
Apparently, Neil didn’t have the producers feeling all warm and fuzzy, because his follow-up segment is, like, 30 seconds long. We do learn that Neil now weighs 257 pounds. That brings his total weight loss to 165 pounds. Neil reveals that he can now shop for clothing in regular stores and is able to do so many more things he couldn’t do before. His life is changed for the better and he knows he’ll be around for a long time to enjoy his life.
You CAN Go Home Again
Back on campus, Jillian gloats. She says she’s done her job and now it’s time to let go of her four finalists. She waits for each of them in the gym, where they will each find a life-sized cut out of themselves on day one of the competition. Julie enters first and Jill says it will be tough saying goodbye to her. Julie says she’ll be forever grateful to Jillian for believing in her. Next up is Bill, who stops in his tracks when he sees the cut out of himself. He admits that he didn’t like himself very much when that picture was taken. Jill praises his accomplishments and for having taken control of his life. Isabeau tells us that she came to the campus as a child and now feels like an independent woman. Jillian tells Isabeau that she’s broken the record of pounds lost by a woman while on campus. Isabeau cries as she tells Jillian that she has become more than a trainer: she’s more like a mentor and a good friend. Finally, here comes Whiny Hollie. Jillian says Hollie was completely numb and shut down emotionally when she arrived at the Biggest Loser campus. She praises Hollie, saying she channeled her troubles into something positive. Jillian knows Hollie’s mother would be proud of her.
Finally, it’s time for everyone to leave the campus. Julie goes first. She says it’s been a life-changing experience and a catalyst for change for the rest of her life. Isabeau says she’s in the game for every woman in America and she wants to win for them. Bill can’t wait for his friends and family to see him. Hollie is excited to see her family and friends, as well as her students. The final four reach the front doors of their homes and…well, we will be waiting until next week to see their homecomings.
Next Week: The final four arrive at home. Then we’ll find out who wins the big sponsor-given money at the live weigh-in.