Welcome back to that Silicon Valley of reality shows, “Fear Factor”. It’s the only show on TV that has more evidence of fake breasts than “Extreme Makeover”. Aww, don’t look at me like that guys. I know that fortune cookies aren’t authentic Chinese cuisine, but it doesn’t lessen my enjoyment of them.
JR, your normal recapper for this fun with water, perfect bodies, and gross stuff is currently on vacation. So, it falls to me to try to do my best in his stead.
This is another “couples” edition of Fear Factor and I’m sure everyone knows the premise by now. For those of you new to it, however, a quick review. Each couple performs three stunts. If they fail to perform the stunt or refuse, they are eliminated. If all stunts are completed, then the winner is determined by time. The last couple standing will win $50,000.
The first couple is John McCullough and Andrea Corkhill. They’ve been dating for four years. Andrea is an athletic blonde with large, muscular arms. She actually looks like she could beat the crap out of her “boyfriend” if she took a notion to. I say “boyfriend” in quotations because she is listed as being from Phoenix, Arizona and he is listed as Newport, California. Call me a skeptic, but I wonder if they just coupled up for the show. Anyway, she says her strategy is to intimidate the women and John says that she calms him.
Our second couple is Ben Lindsey and Kimberlee Downer. No, I didn’t spell her name wrong. It’s really spelled that way and with her hometown listed as Las Vegas, I can’t help but wonder about her profession. She’s a petite blonde (well, except for her ample chest) and manages not only to lick her lips seductively as the camera is trained on her, but also squeezes in a hair flip. I doubted the first couple’s authenticity, but this couple doesn’t even look like they’ve met before the show. Not just because they live on opposite ends of the country, either. Ben is a good-looking, but slightly goofy guy who is wearing a three button polo shirt with what appear to be sweatshorts. His shirt is halfway tucked in and he walks behind his perfect specimen of a “girlfriend” in an awkward loping manner.
The third couple is Brian Barrett and Mandie Granger from Slapout, Alabama. This, I’m sure, is an honest to goodness couple. Brian tells us that Mandie is a cheerleader, gymnast, and ballerina. He also says he plays “every sport possible” and that should give them an enormous advantage. Oh really, Brian? Let’s see some curling or shot-putting and maybe I’ll believe your claim. Mandie tells us that she believes they will win because they have known each other since they were five and can read each other well. Brian is a tall, jock-looking guy with one of those annoying haircuts that hangs down in his eyes. Curse you Ashton Kutcher! How many eye-infections have you been responsible for? Mandie is the token brunette of the show and is a little wisp of a thing. She isn’t as well-endowed as the other ladies, but makes up for it with her impossibly flat stomach.
Finally, we have Troy Parsons and Courtney Dykes from Houston, Texas. Troy says that he thinks Courtney is hot and that’s why they will do well. He doesn’t want to fail in front of a hot girl. Courtney, who I believe wins the “biggest cup-size” award of the show, is a blonde salon owner. Troy is also a good-looking, muscular guy with a million-watt smile.
The Limo Stunt
Joe Rogan does his customary greeting of the couples and then introduces the first stunt. A limo will be lowered into a pool of water with one person in the front seat and one locked in the trunk. When the person in the front seat is fully immersed, a cue light will go on in front of them and they are to swim to the back seat, retrieve a key, and exit through the sunroof. They are then to scramble back to the trunk of the car and release their partner and both must swim to a buoy. Time will be called when both partners have reached the buoy.
Andrea and John are the first couple to try the initial stunt. Andrea strips down to her bikini, which I fear is stretched to capacity. It also makes me wonder if I was wrong about the cup-size award I’ve already given to Courtney. Anyway, they make a good showing and end up with 31.5 seconds as their time. Next up is Mandie and Brian. They make some comments about how they’ve known each other since childhood and Brian says that they “practically raised each other”. Joe notes that this is rather creepy and then asks Brian if he thinks he can do better than Andrea and John. Brian predicts they will have 29 seconds and they leave in the middle of much smack-talking from the other contestants. Before the stunt, Joe teases Brian about the length of his relationship with Mandie and asks him whether he feels the marriage pressure. In a very cocky manner, Brian indicates that he has no plans for marriage in the close future and that the money will go toward the more worthy cause of a new car. His girlfriend plastering on a bright smile, she pretends that he’s all “talk”. Since I am now rooting for this team to lose because of the misogynistic boyfriend, I’m saddened to report that the kissing cousins also do well, barely beating the other team with a 31.2.
Troy and Courtney decide to try for a different approach when they do the stunt. Although Troy is an All-American swimmer, they have decided that Courtney will do the rescuing and Troy will be in the trunk. They fear that Troy’s larger size will slow them down in the compact area of the limo. The couple has been dating for three years and report to Joe that it’s been “smooth sailing” all three years. They are a gregarious couple and seem like they will be fun to watch (and not just for their stunning looks). Despite the doubts of their competitors, their strategy works out well, with a showing of 32.6 (although Troy was actually at the buoy at 28.0). When they get back to shore, we find out that Troy has a long gash on his back. He thinks it could have been caused by scraping his back on the trunk lid and we are shown a replay to see that was exactly what had happened.
The last couple, Ben and Kimberlee, goes back to having the girl in the trunk. Ben gets her out quickly, but Kimberlee struggles with her swimming and they are eliminated with their time of 38.7 seconds. Kimberlee says that she’s not used to losing and is unhappy about it. Ben says that although they are disappointed, it’s in no way a reflection of their strength as a couple. I guess Kimberlee will have to do her suggestive lip-licking back in Vegas.
Around the World With Rotten Fish Guts
The totally gross challenge. Ok, I know this is a fear factor staple. I actually like to watch Fear Factor, I really do. However, I normally watch it with the sound off. Why? I can’t stand the retching sounds and barfing sounds during the second stunt. I just like to look at the nicely endowed ladies and beefy guys. However, since I am recapping this tonight, I’m suffering on through.
Joe introduces the stunt by showing them three bowls with beetles, roaches, and rotten fish parts. He puts them into a blender and produces a vile gray blob. We’ll call it Bugs ‘n’ Guts. He tells the teams that the good news is that none of them will be eliminated today. Instead, they would be competing for an around the world trip from STA Travel. They would be visiting Australia, Africa, Asia, and Europe and receive $2,000 in spending money. He explains the stunt. There is a platform where one person will stand and suck the Bugs ‘n’ Guts into their mouth and spit it into a cylinder beside of the platform. The other teammate will be at the bottom of the cylinder, catching the Bugs ‘n’ Guts in their mouth and then spitting it into a large container. Whoever gets the most in the container in the time provided will win the trip. I’m sorry, but there is no trip worth catching blended bugs and rotten fish guts spit out by my boyfriend in my mouth. Thankfully for Fear Factor, however, there are still good-looking people willing to put disgusting things in their mouth in order to be on TV.
Courtney and Troy are up first and announce that Troy will catch and Courtney will suck. Yeah, I know, I know. Insert your own dirty joke here--> <--. Just as an aside, Courtney seems to have “grown” since the day before. I’m not sure how, but I highly suspect a Miracle Bra swimsuit from Victoria’s Secret. She definitely looks like she’s edging Andrea out for the cup-size award and she wasn’t even in the running the day before. Anyway, they manage to get a couple of inches in the container, even though both of them were choking back vomit throughout. John and Andrea do much better, with John doing the sucking the Bugs ‘n’ Guts and Andrea catching. They manage to overflow the container in 1:53. In order to beat them, Mandie and Brian needed to overflow it before that time. Despite a noble and disgusting effort, they are a few inches shy of the top when the timer hits 1:53. I have to say, though, that the tiny Mandie was at a little bit of a disadvantage as she could barely reach the suspended tube. So, John and Andrea win the trip and jump around excitedly.
The Final Stunt
The couples meet up again in the middle of a city where Joe introduces the next stunt. They are shown a car suspended front bumper toward the ground, 150 feet in the air against the side of a building. One member of the couple will be locked into the front seat of the car and the other member will climb down into the car from the top of the building. They will unlock the handcuffs holding their partner in the car and both will climb the ladder back to the top of the building. Once there, they pull a ripcord to release the car to the ground for no apparent reason other than watching it crash to the ground and giving the crew an excuse to let off pyrotechnics
A random drawing has determined that Mandie and Brian go first. Mandie is frightened, but holds it together as she is buckled into the car and pulled up by the crane. When the time starts, Brian shimmies quickly down the ladder and releases Mandie. She has a difficult time with the ladder, but still makes it to the ripcord in 140.5. They release the car and it hits the ground as explosions go off around it. In true Fear Factor fashion, they show the same scene from about five different camera angles before they are convinced that we are impressed enough. They do this with each couple, but I’ll just mention it here.
My favorite couple, Courtney and Troy, makes a little announcement before they perform their stunt. Courtney holds her hand out to the camera and we see that she is sporting a sizable diamond solitaire. They laugh and cuddle as they tell Joe that they got engaged the night before. After he congratulates them, they head off to the stunt area with Courtney looking increasingly pale. She begins to back out as she is buckled in the car, but Troy talks her back into it and then heads to the top of the building. After he leaves, Courtney continues to freak herself out and begins to cry and say she wants to quit as they lift the car off the ground. Joe finally asks her if she’s sure she wants to quit and she says yes, that she has a bad feeling about it. Joe yells up to Troy that Courtney has quit and the first thing Troy does is turn to the camera and tell us that he still loves her. He then yells the same thing down to her as she yells back that she’s sorry. When he makes it down, he greets her with a kiss. He tells Joe that he’s already won because he has her. AWWWWWW. Now that is just dang cute. I hope Mandie heard that and reads Brian the riot act all the way home. Anyway, as is normal for my favorites, Courtney and Troy are eliminated.
Andrea and John also give a decent showing, but John seems to have more trouble releasing Andrea’s handcuffs than Brian did. They finish with a time of 2:02, thus handing the win over to Mandie and Brian. This doesn’t surprise me considering I found Brian obnoxious. I can only hope that cute little Mandie takes her half of the $50,000 and gets the heck out of Slapout, Alabama.
I hope you had as much fun as I did. See you next week for the next exciting episode of Fear Factor. A week after that, JR will be back with your regularly scheduled recap.
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