The Challenge: USA started its penultimate week—next week is the two-hour, two-episode finale—with Angela saying that she is “locked in” with Alyssa, Ben, Danny, Dom, and Tyson, with all of them vowing to “keep each other safe to the end.”
Ben explained why: the potential of partnering up for the final challenge has them all nervous they’ll have to be paired with a loser (my words, not his).
That makes some sense, but I don’t recall hearing any conversation about this before now. What if they’re wrong, and they’ve kept all the strong players as their direct competition?
Either way, that strategy has produced a series of dull decisions. As soon as the stakes or drama ramps up, it deflates, back to zero by the start of the next episode.
Even Danny seems bored with his Kiki references: “Kiki would tell me: you better go out there and kill it.”
The challenge, “Code Crossing,” was reminiscent of some of my favorite Fear Factor challenges, which took place on the side of moving semi trucks.
The players had to place pegs in holes, giving themselves a place to stand and grip as they moved toward the front of the truck. In an interesting twist, they had the opportunity to place six pegs first, before starting.
David and Tyson went first, with David declaring that made them “test dummies on this one to make it easier for everybody else.”
After his attempt, Tyson declared, “this game is impossible.” Narrator: It wasn’t, though Angela was the only player to make it to the front.
This greatly pleased TJ, who mocked everyone but told Angela: “Thank you so much. I appreciate you.” Ben was the winner in the other genitalia category, since he made it closer to the front than the others.
Domenick said, “I’m going to shock everyone. All these elite athletes that are out here? This guy, the 43-year-old out-of-shape dude is going to win this thing. You watch.”
We did; he didn’t. By the way, about 75 percent of the time, I cannot tell Enzo and Domenick apart, and I don’t understand why since they are very different people and players.
David was the slowest in the challenge, and wanted to face off against Tyson or Dom, just like Sarah wanted to go against Alyssa or Angela last week. “To take down the guy who’s been seemingly running things from day one would mean a lot to me,” David said.
Angela, of course, wanted to do nothing—er, “stick to what we’ve been working on with Survivor guys.”
She told Tyson: “Enzo is the only option here.”
It’s funny how the women are both to blame and in the debt of the men. Danny said Angela owed them for saving her last week, and Ben acted like she’d neutered him and told Enzo “Angela’s not going to let me do anything else.”
This was Enzo’s third time in the elimination challenge, and he was, I think it’s fair to say, pissed off.
“The rich get richer,” Enzo said, indicating Tyson. “This [bleep] won a million dollars doing whatever the fuck he wants, looks like he’s fucking Jesus Christ.”
Then he said “I’m going to start a war in this place if I get lucky enough tonight.” We’d be lucky if that happens, but that’s not the way things go on The Challenge: USA.
The elimination was “Balls In,” one of the classic Challenge challenges, which I recognized as being a classic American Gladiators challenge.
Ben said he wanted Enzo to win “because he’s the only one who makes me laugh,” and then after a tedious five rounds of dirt wrestling, Enzo won and the made me laugh by telling everyone, in subtitled Enzo, “Are you scared? I’m back in, you. Fuck yous, yo.”