The bad news is that Bunim-Murray Productions has elected not to end the franchise on a high note, as the 34th season is currently filming. Even more sadly, most of the "usual suspects" are playing, including headaches familiar (Johnny) and new (Stephen Bear). There are a few new names thrown in, and we might be getting the return of Jordan and Tori, who have become a tight couple away from the cameras. Also: Turbo would be back. As much as I fear that he'd get sucked into the drama, I'd say he's the brightest spot this series has right now.
This episode? Meh. More of the guys stomping on the women, the women involved in intrateam drama, and another ridiculous mission. Also, the real "fun" would take place in the following episode.
Episode Aired: December 20, 2004
Recap Posted: December 25, 2004 [my 29th birthday!]
Tonya decides to play it safe and not lead, which ticks off her teammates. Meanwhile, the players catch shredded food.
Previously on Battle of the Sexes 2: The women’s team won Pop Culture Bike Jump, improving their record to 2-8. Hey, it’s not how a team does in the first 15 missions, but how well they do in the finale. Coral interviewed that the win gave the team hope. The men ejected Frank, while the Women’s Inner Circle made a list, checked it twice, and kicked Veronica out over Tonya. Later on, Tonya challenged the team over voting methods, only to get stalemated. “They better just wait,” she interviewed, “because this gives me more drive to cream them tomorrow and not give a flying [bleep] if they go home.” Way to show team spirit.
It’s daytime in the Women’s Lounge. Tonya talks to Ibis about how her opinion was attacked. Tonya interviews that four girls didn’t back her up (Sophia, Ruthie, Ibis, Tina), and they made her livid. Ibis tells her the people were pissed off at her. Tonya feels nobody would let her complete her sentences. Ibis interviews that Tonya is flipping out. She tells Tonya she’s being paranoid. “The moment there’s a weakness in you,” she adds, “they will [bleeping] drill that [bleep].” Tonya interviews that she is worried about her position. “Bring on the next mission,” she continues, “so I can vote off one of these [a-holes.].”
Any drama going down at the Men’s Lounge? Nope, unless you count Theo taking a nap on a couch, and the guys covering him with whatever they can find. “We’re just having fun,” Randy interviews. “Our strategy is just to have a good time with this.” Theo wakes up, a little cranky about the stuff he’s buried under.
It’s clue time! Steven announces that they got a message from Jonny. Shane: “What does that [bleeper] say?” The message: get ready to get dirty. Flip to Tina as she reads: “What goes up must come down.” Also, wearing team colors and tennis shoes. Ruthie figures they’ll be bungee-jumping into a “big bucket of dirt.” Given the previous missions, that’s not quite farfetched.
Immediately, Mark volunteers himself and Shane, since neither player has stepped up in a while. Eric goes forward to complete the list. Mark interviews that if the team wins, the leaders are safe. Brad figures if they put twice as much food into the shredder as the women, they will win.
Speaking of the women, Robin steps up to lead, but nobody else seems to be as eager. Coral interviews about the difficulty to be enthusiastic over the possibility of going home. She tells the team she’s led three times. Ibis finally steps up. She interviews about Tonya following her, since Tonya has not led three times. But Tonya just sits there like a lump. “It sucks that people are that paranoid,” Ibis interviews. “If you’re that insecure, there’s something wrong.”
After commercials, Tonya explains to us that she’s not stepping up because she doesn’t trust her teammates, and she’s looking out for herself. I can understand the rationale, but that philosophy is going to get her whacked soon. Finally, Ruthie offers herself to lead. Coral asks if she and Tina can load the shredder.
After Jonny calls the leaders to reveal themselves, he orders them to get the meat from the truck. If you’re thinking this is edible stuff, think again. Remember, this is reality television. The players get a big whiff of the spoiled meat and assorted vegetable, and they recoil from the stench. Tina interviews about the blocks, and I’m certain the world “block” should never be associated with meat. The food is gather in a square. Ibis: “There’s no words to describe anything or compare anything to it. It’s just gross.”
Steven interviews that the guys always practice before a mission. We see Eric lob a water bottle into Randy’s helmet bucket. Mark goes over the team strategy: he’ll grab the meat and pass it to Eric, who will feed it to the shredder. In the field, co-leader Shane will negotiate the other players to catch the food. What is Coral’s strategy? “Do exactly what the boys are doing,” she tells Tina. “They always win, so copy them.” Coral interviews that she’ll give the material to Tina, who will put it in the shredder.
Jonny blows his air horn to kick things off. Both teams waste little time launching and catching the food products, then dumping it into their respective containers. Coral interviews that it is difficult to get a big stream on her teammates. One of the girls gets hit with a huge chunk of something. In fast-motion, we see the difference in loading; Tina shoves the food in one chunk at a time, while Eric lines up several blocks and shoves it all in. Dan compares the mission to being in a war and moving soldiers. Cut to one of the guys (Randy or Theo) getting tagged in the nuts by a chunk. To emphasize the hilarity, the editors show it three times, punctuated with a doorbell. There’s more talk over the consistency of vegetables through the shredder, but it’s mostly boring. Both sides are covered in debris, while the background music wails, “Bored in America! Bored in America!” Seriously, what?
Jonny asks the women to bring up their container. It weighs in at 25.75 lbs. “I just want to win,” Steven interviews. “We all want to win, period.” The guys’ total weight comes in at 30.25 lbs. To give some perspective: out of the 6,000 lbs. of food brought less than one percent got caught. Anyway, the guys win yet again, getting the trips to the Bahamas and the fancy shoes. Jonny goes over the Inner Circle spiel: male leaders pick out team member, ladies’ team leaders are up for elimination. “I really don’t even want to think about who’s going home,” Ruthie interviews, “because anybody going home today is a big asset to the team.”
Men’s Lounge, Boys’ Inner Circle Meeting. Mark goes over penalties and disqualifications. Brad is clean. Steven? Clean. Randy? Well, he was a penalty and a disqualification. Cut to a scene from Fill 'Er Up, where Randy grabs the container as he spits into it. “You know when it’s your turn to go home,” Shane interviews. “You know where your standing is. Nobody’s confused, nobody’s surprised.” Mark notes that Randy should be happy to have gotten this far.
Women’s Lounge, Girls’ Inner Circle Meeting. Tonya wants to figure out who the two best players are, so she may team up with them at the end. Coral brings up a legitimate concern: the final mission always comes down to a puzzle. She adds that it might not be a good idea to ditch a “puzzle person.” Sad to say, that didn’t keep the Road Rules team from dumping Steve into the Gauntlet twice.
Over at the Main Lodge, Ibis and Robin have a chat. Ibis thinks two people are not stepping up. Robin interviews that it isn’t fair that the weaker players are voting.
Back at the Women’s Lounge, Tonya discounts Robin from elimination, and mentions that Ruthie has been stepping it up. Tina would also want Robin and Ruthie at the end, so she votes for Ibis. Coral: “Here’s what I’m thinking in my head: who’s gonna go over there and get my money for me?” You guys make your own jokes, because I still like her. She brings up Ibis’s alleged skills in puzzles. Sophia backs Coral up, interviewing about how Ibis is an essential part of the team. Coral asks the group if there’s another “puzzle person” within the ranks.
Cut to Elimination Hill. We get close-ups of Ibis, Robin and Randy. Robin is fooling around with a jump rope. I am honestly scared that Eric is starting a cult at this point. Randy is wearing a t-shirt with a boy’s picture on it. I’m guessing it’s a shout-out, but it looks unflattering. Jonny goes through the motions before throwing it to the boys. The Inner Circle walks up, and Eric and Mark have jump ropes. The camera pans to the rest of the boys looking stern, then to Randy with a goofy grin on his face. Mark reminds everybody about how penalties and disqualifications are important to determine who goes home, then drops the axe on Randy. Of course, Randy has no hard feelings about the decision, saying that he’s happy and that the team did good.
Guess who’s going to announce the ladies’ decision? Come on, guess for me. None other than Sophia “Weepy Reaper” Pasquis. I like her, but the best reason to dump her at this point is so she wouldn’t have to do this anymore. She doesn’t want any of the three leaders to go home. For a second, I think Ruthie’s a goner, since Sophia has precided over the bootings of two lesbians already. But our unlucky loser is Ibis, who sadly nods her head. Poor girl... between this and her voluntarily taking a fall in RR: X-Treme, I feel bad for her. She hugs Sophia and manages to whimper that the game has been fun. She is then hugged by Robin and Ruthie, then tells her team that she wants them to win. Tonya smiles a little, and I think we’ve found our late-season villain. Jonny declares that Ibis and Randy were great competitors, but they know the deal: get off the property by 10 p.m., or Old Man Moseley comes after them with a shotgun.
Back at the Women’s Lounge, Robin comforts Ibis, saying that there are people on the team that do not need to be here. Ibis seconds that emotion, and we cut to a shot of Arissa, Tina and Tonya. “They’re playing this game,” Ibis interviews as we see her pack up, “acting like likes and hiding behind other people. Their time will come, and they’ll look like idiots. You can’t delay the inevitable.” Poor Ibis. She doesn’t know that when it comes to BMP shows, karma just lets things slip. She repeats her line to Ruthie, ordering her to “get them the [bleep] out of here, because they’ve been riding this thing for free long enough.”
Over at the Men’s Lounge, the mood is happy. Theo: “I feel like this is an orphanage, and Randy just got adopted.” The guys laugh, as does Randy. He isn’t bitter, and he is happy to know that their system works. Theo interviews that the decisions are based on performance, but it keeps getting harder. “There’s so few of us left,” he adds. “You make a wrong decision, and you can go home.” He tells Randy that Steve got to pet him while he slept. I won’t ask.
Outside, Ruthie schemes. You heard me. The same woman who got steamrolled in BOTS1 by Emily is making plans. She tells Sophia that Tonya needs to go for not leading three times. She adds that if Sophia is in the Inner Circle, then Arissa or Tonya would have to go. Ruthie interviews that some players are flying under the radar. “If other people are strategizing in this game and playing it,” she adds, “then I have to play it too.” She tells Sophia that “she’s been the worst player out of all of us.” We cut to a shot of Tonya, so I guess that’s who Ruthie is talking about. Sophia figures that the game will be more strategic.
Time to say goodbye. Ibis heads for the van, getting hugged by Tonya. I’m guessing that either Tonya hates what she did, or she had to pull the salad fork sticking from Ibis’s back. “I’m willing to do this,” Tonya interviews, “and do whatever it takes and sacrifice a great friendship, because I want to win at the end. I’m going out for blood.” Shut up, you Emily wannabe.
Next time: Tonya takes center stage again. She seems to be getting loaded at a club, smacking her head on a couch arm. The mission? I have no clue what it’s about. But guess what? Steven hits Shane, and Jonny brings up the no violence rule. Could the biggest punk of RW: Las Vegas be going home? We can only hope. In the meantime, have a safe and festive holiday season!
"Weepy Reaper." Damn, I didn't mean to insult Sophia. Sadly, her worst moment was a few episodes into the future.
Eliminated player recaps? Oh, right.Randy would return one last time, winning alongside the Rookies in Gauntlet 2. I did not remember that until I looked it up on Wikipedia . . . and I recapped that season. I guess Randy was forgettable due to a lack of screentime with his "bromance" buddy Brad. They were cute together on the original RW: San Diego, especially when they did Halloween dressed as Mario & Luigi.
Ibis also returned in Gauntlet 2, and also was on the winning Rookies team. Once again, I did not remember this. Unlike Randy, she would return for one last season . . . the utter hateable clusterfuck that was The Ruins. She was on the Champions team, but would lose in the Ruins (the elimination game) to Kimberly. Kimberly was on RW: Hollywood, another season that needed to be buried fifty feet deep, with the hole filled with fresh concrete. In the prior season (Duel II, which probably peaked at the beginning, where CT beat the snot out of Adam), Kimberly took out Robin and Ruthie (in her final Challenge) before getting defeated in a Duel with Jenn from RW: Denver. Isn't Wikipedia wonderful? I'll stop the online dive here, lest I so so deep as to never surface