November 12, 2010

Reality Rundown: Disco Dust is Dead

The Amazing RaceThe Biggest LoserSurvivor: Nicaragua
Top Chef: Just Desserts

The Amazing Race -The teams remain in Russia for this leg and get their first clue instructing them to "join the circus." Task #1 is a Detour: learn a Russian folk song on the accordion or spin 10 plates on poles. The immediate first impression is to pick the plates, which I assume as well, but everyone sucks and begins to swap Detours again (except the Doctors and Gary/Mallory who picked accordions first). Brook/Claire are the ace of plates, probably because they sell a lot of plates on TV, and leave the Detour first, followed shortly after by the Doctors. They receive their next clue directing them to Bank Bridge, where they'll find their next clue between some statues that remind me of those laser-eyes statues from The Neverending Story.

At the bridge they receive a clue to go to some random building but the rules strictly forbids paying a taxi to lead them there; they can only receive help from locals. I'm sure this narration will have no impact whatsoever on the race Amazing Race wrong gong noise> They have to climb the tower and find some teeny statue sending them to a church. Exposition OVERLOAD. The Doctors and Nick/Vicki find their way first, teaming up to get ahead since the Doctors are awesome at everything. Bad news for the Kevin/Michael: they didn't read the directions and took a cab. D'oh. Nick and Kat (or Nat?) figure out the clue, then mislead the other teams. They walk to the church and find yet another clue, sending them Peter and Paul Fortress for another clue. This is a shitty recapping episode- am I right? Kevin/Michael are mad they were lied to, but I think they'll be madder when they realize they kept taking cabs and didn't read a clue right. Brook/Claire were smart enough to re-read the clue and go back and complete their walking portion. Final clue of the night is a Road Block: play a Russian version of bowling called "gorodki." They'll have to complete 3 formations, none of which involve knocking Phil Keoghan off the pins like the promo made it appear. Boo! We want contestant-on-host violence!

Nat and Kat are awesome at gorodki and check into the Pit Stop first: they win $5,000 each. More and more teams arrive as Michael/Kevin lag behind since the dad, the weakest man on the race, has to do this physical challenge. Jill/Thomas and Michael/Kevin having grabby cabbies that want their money. Meanwhile, Stephanie finally knocks down the pins and Chad recommends they ditch the bags if they want to stand a chance at a footrace against Kevin/Michael. Chad/Stephanie get there first but learn they must pay the cab driver before checking in, so they go back. Kevin/Michael arrive to check-in but find out from Phil they received two 30 minute penalties for not following the rules; yup a whole hour. Chad/Stephanie run back, pay the cab, and walk back to the check-in but they also didn't follow the rules. Since their 30 minute penalty would lapse before Kevin/Michael's 1 hour, they are team #6 and Kevin/Michael are eliminated. Ahhh reading is power.

The Biggest Loser - The losers return to the ranch to find Ali in the kitchen and she ain't hockin' Jennie-O turkey. After what, 3 weeks with teams, everyone will return to original colors however they are now competing as pairs. And a whole pair will go home this week. How will they pair up? After a hard work-out with Bob and Jillian, they set down to dinner with Alison at a fancy table and she announces dinner is a Temptation challenge: after a 3 course meal (which they get to select off a menu), whoever eats the most calories at dinner wins. Only Elizabeth, Aaron and Brendon are into this party, gorging themselves on calorie-rific food. Brendon makes a deal to let Aaron partner with Jesse to make him drop off. Lisa, who ate healthy all meal, indulges on dessert and is floored when she finds out she ate a 1,400 calorie dessert; she says she'd never do this at home, but Frado wisely points out, "But you're on The Biggest Loser." Duuuur. Brendon ate a total of 3,500 calories and wins the Temptation. Everyone is pretty satisfied with their partnerships, except Ada who wanted to be paired with a strong guy and didn't like Aaron getting paired with who he wanted. Waaaaaaah.

Bob and Jillian don't care for the pairings, both as a concept overall and who is paired with who, and predicts 2 women will leave this week. Later there is a challenge to stack sugar cubes one at a time into a 5ft tower. Ada and Jessica at least display that the girls aren't completely useless in the game by winning the challenge. Then they address women and desserts with the new Extra Dessert gum and, for realsies, it's DELICIOUS. Mel Got Served APPROVED. Bob then gives Lisa a reminder and how much she needs to be on the ranch and not chowin' down on desserts that aren't product placement gum.

At the weigh-in, Bob and Jillian flip out upon learning Lisa cooked Elizabeth's food all week. Aaron and Jesse proceed to lose only 20lbs together; but Aaron had a huge number last week, so the 4 makes sense. Lisa and Elizabeth both come up at 8lbs, but Elizabeth feels like crap since B&J berated her. They get into a passive aggressive argument with Lisa and Elizabeth and them not wanting to really be there, and Lisa says she's still in the game because she's "a placeholder" for Frado and Brendon to beat in the end; crying ensues. I like this term and will apply it to many shows- like Survivor: Nicaragua having like 6 placeholders still around. Brendon and Patrick demolish everyone, with Patrick losing 19lbs and Brendon 18. Ada and Jessica overcome the lady odds and stay above the Yellow line. So up for elimination are Aaron/Jesse and Lisa/Elizabeth. The votes are cast and the placeholders stay put, sending Aaron/Jesse home and crushing Aaron, who considers being votes off by Patrick a complete betrayal of friendship. Good news is in the live at-home reveal they're both skinny.

Survivor: Nicaragua - The tribe isn't buying Marty's speech; Jane is now calling him Farty, so yeah, she's hysterical. Marty knows he's on the chopping block, so approaches some of his possible allies for a plan to pretend to vote for NaOnka but actually vote off Jane. Jane wants to whoop his ass in a wood shed.

The Reward Challenge is an obstacle course, all to collect 3 keys to open locks; yes there is a wall of hay! In fact there's a hay wall, stick barricade, and a brick wall; wonder where they got that from- hmmmm. The teams were randomly drawn, but fate said, let's make it men vs. women so the women can not be able to break the stuff. The winning team, the men (sans Chase, who sat out but picked to side with the ladies), get a canopy tour, zipline ride, and of course food in the form of a BBQ. Purple Kelly, who I don't think has spoken all season, begins crying because she's so hungry and lost. Jeff gives a proposition that the men could give up their spot for a woman to eat and they decline. Hello, it's a BBQ and zipline. Of course, Marty thinks this is a great time to talk game with the guys and it's like, you idiot, why would you tell Sash? They also discuss the Brenda/Chase bond- sounds like my initial pick to win could be in hot water.

Even Brenda knows Chase is kind of dumb: a puppy who follows around his lady pals. The women want Marty out, but Holly has some trepidation about Brenda and Sash's bond but Chase half trusts her, half doesn't. He tries to talk to her, ignoring Nay's advice to not ignore her; someone's becoming a liability. The Immunity Challenge is a memory challenge of turning blocks to display a pattern of symbols. Brenda beats out Marty for the necklace, which bums me out as I'd love to see Jane still try to cast a vote for an immune Marty. The guys are still planning to get NaOnka to flush out her idol and let Chase know their plans. Everyone is still hinging on the vote of Brenda, because these morons still can't realize how amazing of a player she is; she runs this shit, not Sash! Brenda and Sash convene and agree that it's a good idea to flush the idol and maybe to keep Marty around to have a thorn in the side to the women and Chase; they don't like the new Chase/Holly/Jane bond. Running the game, they are running the game and I love it!

At Tribal, Jane's likability is the main topic of discussion because you don't bring the funny old lady to the end if you want to win. Jeff brings up Nay's food stealing and gets a little terse with him, admits she's human and she screws up, and doesn't like Marty at all. There's a lot of giggling from the Nay/Marty bickering- it sounds like a 4th grade classroom. Fabio expresses his irritation with Nay and the feeling is mutual. Jeff is speechless that NaOnka can talk so much shit and still be in the game; we all are Jeffrey, we all are. NaOnka does not play her immunity idol, so that point of the plan is moot. The votes are cast and Marty joins Alina to sit in the jury member bench. Looks like pleasing NaOnka is the route picked by Sash and Brenda.

Top Chef: Just Desserts - Quickfire: The guest judge is Francois Payard, who used to be Moaning Morgan's boss. The remaining chefs need to tell their life story through a box of chocolates. Get it? Like that movie Forrest Gump from 16 years ago. They have to make 4 chocolates and one of the winning recipes will be distributed at Godiva stores. Morgan continues his streak of being a total dick by yelling about piping bags, then making a chocolate that represents this experience crushing his soul. Yigit didn't finish his 4th chocolate, so he doesn't get the full judging experience. Morgan wins- YAAAAAWN. For once I thought Danielle was the best- her chocolates sounded tasty and had better stories. His soul-crushing Top Chef truffle will be distributed at Godiva stores, so if you want to taste hell on reality TV, head to your local Godiva store!

Elimination challenge: make a 61st anniversary for some old dude and his wife. Winner gets $15k too. Each chef gets some time to talk to the lovely couple, Ben and... Sylvia Weinstock, the cake lady who looks like the Old Navy lady with that dog Magic. TWIST ALERT! Definitely didn't see that coming. Morgan, to make a point that he's an asshole again keeps the piping bags from earlier for himself. The party stops and Morgan's cake is plain white buttercream, clean piping, and topped with a little piano with pink flowers. The piano is cool but the rest is a snore. Danielle makes a gray cake in honor of Cynthia's wedding dress and added piano keys and roses as decor. Zac's cake: kind of a wreck. The meeting at the beach theme is out of control; white chocolate sea foam, looks slanted, so gaudy. Yigit's cake is pretty: yellow buttercream, pink flowers, and some odes to the piano. Bad new is he can barely cut the cake- d'oh.

Judges' Table. The judges liked Danielle's piano key steps and her chocolate cake was really moist. The gray color was considered unappetizing. Yigit's cake was over-complicated, but his flavored buttercream was delicious and appreciated. His pink chocolate flowers on the top were also well done. Morgan's simplicity was admired, but the panne cotta inside was meh and the chocolate was dry. Zac's cake itself was nice and moist, but the design was a bit childish and didn't represent them being old together. Zac brings up Morgan playing it safe with his boring cake and has no excitement when he wins things. The big question is who is heading to the final 3 and whose cake get sliced? Puns by Mel! Danielle wins the challenge and I'm happy for her- it was stylish and sounded like a flavor I'd like to eat. Zac's cake wreck is cut and it's Yigit and Moanin' Morgan advancing to next week.

Photo Credits:,,,,


Dave Galanter said...

Okay, so....

Survivor: I don't know why, but I don't like Jane. I guess because her reason for disliking whom she likes, much like NaOnka's is seemingly random.

Also, did you see me comment at Andy's site about the thre little pigs motif, of did you notice too? (My brother noticed it--I didn't.)

TopChef-JD: I really disliked Zac's suggestion that Morgan should not win or go home because he has a different way of expressing emotion, and I liked Morgan's reply. I gotta say, I don't like any of them on that show right now. Also, and this happens in The Next Iron Chef America also: I HATE this thing about limited ingredients or tools. Give the chefs the same access to their own set of things, as they'd have in their own kitchen. Not this "I'm gonna take all the X so people don't have X." That's bullshit and an attempt to create drama where there wasn't any.

Mel Got Served said...

I did notice the 3 Little Pigs, but I will admit it was after someone on Twitter pointed it out. Smart idea, too bad the random draw completed failed. Obviously the intent was for mixed teams to make it more fair. Whoops!

TCJD: I think Morgan is talented, just a jerk. He hates everyone for being so negative, yet that's all her ever is. I guess I want Yigit to win, but he's kind of a clunker now too. On Iron Chef, I just wish they'd have them do secret ingredient challenges more often. I mean, that's the point of Iron Chef.

Jane just annoys me at this point.

Dave Galanter said...

I agree on Next Iron Chef. I'd like to see less silly challenges and more Iron Chef-like challenges.

Regarding Morgan: yes, he's kinda a jerk, but my sense is he's a bit more adult than some of them, and that has rubbed them all the wrong way. I actually liked Zac quite a bit until he called Morgan out for not cheering when he WINS.

I want Gail to make something in the final and somehow win has host, because she's awesome! :-D

Mel Got Served said...

I'm loving Gail even more, if that's even possible. She's awesome.

It's one thing for Morgan to bicker with the contestants face-to-face, but his confessionals are catty too, making him look childish as well.

Dave Galanter said...

I agree, but I always try to give EVERYONE a little leeway with their comments in "interviews" because I know the producer asking the question may be saying things like, "if you HAD to describe what make Zac annoy you most, what would it be? If you had to pick something negative about what Yigit made, what would it be?" You know?

Mel Got Served said...

Definitely agree, but he's a total dick. Danielle gets frustrated with everyone too but she keeps it kinda calm. His asshole attitude during last week's Quickfire was a turnoff too.

Dave Galanter said...

True. I don't deny the asshat that is Morgan. I wish there WERE someone to like who'll win. Even Danielle kinda annoys me (less than the others) but I don't think she has the skills to win it, unless she brings something spectacular.

Mel Got Served said...

Definitely agree. While they are judged week-to-week and not cumulative, Danielle has been a clunker until last week. Maybe Heather comes back to win?

Dave Galanter said...

Maybe Seth/Dexter comes back! He wins only because they have to tell a story through ice cream flavors which relate to the people they've killed or the mental institutions they've been in. Seth wins it all with his three unique flavors: Hitchhiker Honey Cream," "Belleview Butter Pecan," and "Mailmain-who-obviously-has-been-stealing-socks-out-of-my-dryer Marshmellow."

Mel Got Served said...

Seth was nucking futs!!

Dave Galanter said...

I make fun, but I think we was more than reality-tv-nuts (like say any of the wives on (sur)Real Housewives of places I'd never want to live. I think Seth was truly mental. He needs help. I expect him to show up on A&E's Horders (of dead clowns).

Mel Got Served said...

Yeah he had some serious issues. At least he gave one of the best quotes of all of 2010: "The Red Hots are for my mommy!"

Dave Galanter said...

LOL! Thanks for reminding me. Is there going to be a reunion show?

Mel Got Served said...

I'm not so sure. I haven't watched the Top Chefs reunions lately because they are such a snooze.