Wednesday, December 04, 2013

The Biggest Loser Season 15, Episode 8: Cowboy-Hat-Guy has his day

SPOILER ALERT -- at the end of this post, I reveal which team and player loses the weigh-in. If you don't want to know, please come back later and tell me what you thought.


Holley's at-home video was fun to watch. I didn't notice a lot more weight loss since she left the ranch (I looked it up online and it was about 20 more pounds), but she is feeling confident that she can lose weight and get stronger.  It strikes me that there have not been many eliminations (at least not as many that stuck) this season. The Red Team begins this episode at full strength, the Blue team is only missing Holley, and Jillian's team is only down two. The trainer save has really changed the dynamic this season.

In this episode, we learn a lot more about Jay, who has been a cowboy-hat-wearing enigma up until this point. Jay got to spend a week at home and take Jillian with him, and we get to see a little of his home and family life.  He must not be a big talker, because we don't get a lot of ordinary moments with him, but like most of the contestants on this show, he has suffered deep, soul-crushing losses, and instead of dealing with them has tried to push his feelings down. Jillian forces him to confront his feelings of grief and loss and it seems to be a big breakthrough moment for him. Because his weight loss will be the only one that counts for his team, Jay doesn't get to spend much time visiting with his family -- he has to do improvised torture-chamber workouts with Jillian in the barn where he used to train his horses. Missouri is hot and humid. Jillian, who has always said she hates working out outdoors, is obviously missing her nice, climate-controlled gym.

Bob is obviously missing Holley and so is his team. It seems like without her there, the guys are now fighting for the Alpha Male role.  Hap and Matt seem to be ganging up on Bobby, which is supposedly because he is "not working as hard" as they are, but could also be because he is gay.  Bobby has been losing more weight than the two of them put together, so they might also just be jealous.  I think it's funny that Bob thought he needed to save his trainer save for Chelsea, who is holding her own and losing more than guys twice her size.

Dolvett has a couple of "moments" with his contestants. His attempt to motivate Ruben with an old football jersey seems to fall a little flat, but Rachel responds well to getting back in a competitive swimming pool. For some reason, Dolvett needed to be in a swimsuit to stand on the side of the pool and time her, though he wore board shorts instead of a competition suit.  He does have a beautiful body (as long as he's not talking or staring soulfully at the camera), so the producers might well have wanted to show it off.

Both the Red and Blue Teams have some low weight-loss numbers from the guys. It seems impossible that these huge men would not be losing fast, given the grueling workouts and the low-calorie diets they are on.  They can't possibly be putting muscle on that fast.  Ruben, who is barely out of the 400s loses only 2 pounds.  He seemed to be smirking on the scale -- I would not be surprised if he threw the weigh-in on purpose. Other contestants have in the past by drinking large amounts of water. He did not seem to like working out, he didn't seem to really click with Dolvett, and he has a celebrity lifestyle to return to instead of the usual low-wage jobs held by contestants on the show.  He probably figures that if he wants to lose more, he can hire his own trainer.  I think he is very conflicted about losing weight in general. Being big seems to be part of his brand, and I also wonder if his voice would be affected if he lost a lot.  It seems like there is a perception, at least, that a big voice might need a big body.  I will be curious to see what he looks like at the finale.

NBC has to feel cheated. They brought two celebrities on this season, and both of them have been eliminated. One was even eliminated twice.  Celebrities just don't seem to work on The Biggest Loser.  Remember Rulon?

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"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07