Best thing about The Biggest Loser? People reclaiming their health and fitness. Worst thing – worst thing BAR NONE? The tears, the tears, the endless, endless tears. Seriously, Bob & Jillian must be slipping some kind of anti-Prozac into the Losers’ Ziploc’d snack bags. Oops, guess we shouldn’t make jokes about Jillian feeding contestants substances, given the petite scandale (dunno if that’s the way to say it in French, first paragraph of the recap and already I’m making crap up) last season. Or was that the season before?

Just click your heels together three times and chant, “There’s no place like home!”

Anyway. The house is a vale of tears over the departure of Allie, former teen gastric-bypass victim. Tina, the 58-yr-old granny who selflessly gives and gives and has nothing left over for herself (except second helpings, presumably) is rife with guilt over being the one chosen by her housemates to remain at the ranch. She calls a meeting to snivel and ask to go home, inciting the fury of outspoken Frado and the more passive-aggressive Brenden. Brenden will spend ample time this week saying s*** about his housemates to the confessional camera rather than to their faces, which is opposite of what I’d expect from a brash Bostonian, but I guess I’ve watched The Boondock Saints one too many times. Shouldn’t stereotype. Frado, being a loud, in-your-face Guido plain-spoken sort, is also unimpressed with pinkshirt Lisa, who wants to go home to “take care of Allie”. I think she means that in a supportive, non-threatening way.

Bob – watch out, Losers, he’s taken bitch lessons from Jillian over the summer and man, is he pissed – enters the fray and is told Tina and Lisa are trying to weasel out of the competition. Bob’s flying solo today and after administering stern Bob-like lectures and flexing his forearm tattoos, marches the whole gang into the gym for a 15-station circuit workout designed to break the collective spirit. Predictably, the contestants complain and cry their way through the session, save for Frado, who grunts and screams his way through. I know there’s a double-entendre joke in there somewhere, but a heavily perspiring Frado is off-putting enough to erase any of those kinds of thoughts away. Bob provides some fun, threatening to break Patrick’s legs and then beat Patrick with them, but abandons this plan in order to pick on young Jesse. As much as he goads Jesse, however, Jesse doesn’t quite rise to the bait and stays relatively mellow.

Tennis, anyone? But keep your balls to yourself

Also predictably, Bob settles in for a heart-to-heart with Tina, who sniffles over her obese, diabetic adult daughter left at home. Tina agrees to make an effort to stay at the ranch, because if she’s still feeling undecided, the next tete-a-tete will be with Jillian, who tends to get angry with quitters. And she won’t like Jillian when Jillian is angry.

Speaking of, Jillian is in a righteous snit over seven of the eight female Losers falling under the yellow line last week. She opines that the women are “too kumbaya” over this whole competition thing. Jessica, who’s looking more and more like a (helium-inflated) version of Jillian, appears to be the sole woman who’s with the program. Really, though, I’m pulling for this young ‘un, who’s undeniably drop-dead gorgeous and has to be mind-blowingly hot after her transformation.

Oh, and speaking of! It’s Anna Kournikova, former Grand Slam champ and perennial poster girl, making an appearance as Tennis Instructor Barbie. She jogs in, wearing a shorter-than-short hot pink skirt, hair flowing, and you can practically hear the bow-chicka-wow-wow music in the background. Host Ali instantly becomes the proverbial chopped liver as the boys’ chubby little faces split into ear-to-ear grins. Anna leads the group in a tennis workout, which is the cause of all the huffing and puffing amongst the guys. I hope. Brenden is a mite too enthusiastic bidding the blonde Russian goodbye, however, clutching her in a long, sweaty embrace. Brenden says she smells good. Maybe not so much now, though.

Pop challenge time, with the prize being immunity at the next weigh-in. The contestants must use tennis balls to fill individual cylinders with each Loser’s name on them at the top of a set of stairs. When your cylinder is full, you are out of the challenge. The balls can only be picked up and deposited one at a time. The challenge starts (and ends) slow, with everyone dragging ass in the wake of Anna’s workout. Not surprisingly, Tina is targeted and is first out. Frado emerges victorious, but there’s no time to celebrate as Ali announces a surprise weigh-in for the following day.

The Week 2 Jinx

Everyone knows that the week 2 numbers always suck, but this group would rather dither about their chances than sneak away for a midnight workout. Brenden, Frado and Patrick solidify a burgeoning alliance. According to Frado, though, it’s not really gameplay to have an alliance. Hey Frado…once in, there’s no out. *Taps side of nose* Brenden is less in denial and declares that you gotta have bros to watch your back. Now there’s a more Boston-like attitude.

Weigh-in time, and the yellow line is again boosted to the halfway mark. Ali, sporting unflattering corkscrew curls and heavy eyeliner, ushers the immune Frado to the scale. I know there’s many TBL forum readers who are all about the numbers, and even though I couldn’t figure out those weight-loss percentages without a calculus honors student at my side doing all the work…I like ‘em too. So without further ado:

Frado: Start weight 340 → 337 Loss -3
Frado is immune, lucky for him, so he is not entered on the board.

Burgandy: Start weight 219 → 218 Loss -1 0.46%

Tina: Start weight 247 → 243 Loss -4 1.62%
Another snivelly apology to the group

Sophia: Start weight 258 → 252 Loss -6 2.33%

Ada: Start weight 240 → 234 Loss -6 2.50%

Lisa: Start weight 272 → 267 Loss -5 1.84%
Hey, it’s been a stressful week. All that crying takes a lot out of a girl.
Too bad tears don’t weigh much.

Aaron: Start weight 438 → 431 Loss -7 1.60%
Bob says Aaron’s “not engaged”. Translation: Slacker!

Adam: Start weight 368 → 431 Loss -12 3.26%
Amid cheers, Jillian says she’s pleased with Adam’s attitude.
Translation: Not a slacker!

Elizabeth: Start weight 232 → 229 Loss -3 1.29%
This puts Burgandy below the line. Adam is safe.

Rick: Start weight 314 → 306 Loss -8 2.55%
Elizabeth falls below the line.

Mark: Start weight 380 → 369 Loss -11 2.89%
Aaron falls below the line.

Jessica: Start weight 268 → 261 Loss -7 2.61%
Jillian smiles and says Jessica gets it.
Tina’s turn to go under the yellow line.

Jesse: Start weight 339 → 329 Loss -10 2.95%
Bob is pleased with his protégé.
Lisa joins Tina under the line.

Patrick: Start weight 378 → 366 Loss -12 3.17%
Sophia goes under the line.

Brenden: Start weight 331 → 326 Loss -5 1.51%
His lousy week saves Ada and puts him below the line.

For those not keeping up, Ada & Jessica are the only two women who are above the Yellow Line of Death. Adam, as the week’s Biggest Loser, gets to save a player under the line while the remaining 6 will get set to compete in an elimination challenge.

Sandbox wars

Under the guise of promoting dairy consumption, Bob gets a little plug time in for Yoplait smoothies, with Tina as his accomplice. Then it’s off to the gym, where Bob & Jillian rally the troops for a workout before the elimination challenge. Jillian focuses on the men, so as to show them whose balls are the biggest. She’s talking about kettle balls, of course. You have to be tough to swing those suckers. Afterwards, she decides it’s high time she beat the sweetness out of Aaron and Patrick. Oddly enough, it appears to work on Aaron, who subsequently goes after Adam to beg to be saved from the challenge and possible elimination. Adam must now choose between sincere dad Aaron and whiny Burgandy, who considers herself a friend of Adam’s.

Sincerity wins over sucking up, and Aaron is chosen by Adam to be exempt from the challenge. A bitter Brenden, who’s now the token man among the girls, sneers derisively that it’s a game-play move. Ali, looking much fresher in a ponytail and casual clothes, announces that the challenge consists of 4 piles of sand with a brass ring hidden in each. The two Losers who fail to unearth a brass ring will be up for elimination by vote. There’s a grand total of 175 tons of sand to dig through, so the unlucky six don gloves and start diggin’. Elizabeth is successful early on, triumphantly waving the ring from the first sand pile. It gets ugly on hill no. 2, as Brenden finds the ring but a hovering Sophia wrests it from his grip. Brenden is quickly vindicated as he digs out the ring from the 3rd hill, and Burgandy manages to snag the final prize from the last sand hill.

Ah, poetic justice. Tina and Lisa, the sob sisters who wanted to go home scant days ago, are now expected to argue their cases in order to stay. Lisa gives a heartfelt speech, but Tina has clearly given up and simply asks to stay. The voting is as anti-climactic as you’d expect, with the first five votes cast against Tina. No further votes are required, and Grandma is sent packing. She goes home determined to continue her program and help her daughter lose weight as well.

It’s all good news at Tina’s follow up – she’s gone from 263 pounds to 205, and her 36-year-old daughter has managed to lose 85 pounds of her own. Congrats, ladies, and keep up the hard work. Next week, Bob makes good on his earlier threat and actually chops off Patrick’s legs!!!!! Hey, it’s almost Halloween and the Losers don’t get treats, so tricks it will have to be…think I’m kidding? You’ll have to check out AshleyPSU’s recap, then. Until then…don’t play in the sandbox alone.

How many showers do you think Anna K. took after Brenden finished rubbing up against her? Because even I needed one after watching that.