Monday, June 20, 2005

Inferno II, Episode 15: Penultimate Paranoia

Sorry for the delay, folks. I’ve been busy all week, such as pest control on the blog and working on an article. While I remain committed to recapping, the story is money in the bank and one step closer to full-time gig. I gotta get a life one of these days.

Previously on Inferno II: Tonya snapped at her female teammates, telling them that she needs respect. “I’m done with you screwing with me,” she interviewed, “and if you don’t have my back, I’m not going to have yours.” The Good Guys won Crab Grab, bringing both teams even at $70,000. Landon beat Dan in the Inferno. Landon hoped that his team’s momentum would keep going.

Nighttime at the villa. Tonya tells the girls and Derrick that she needs sleep. Rachel: “Tonya just wants us to go to bed so she can masturbate.” I don’t know if I should smack her for saying that, or the editors for leaving that in. Veronica doesn’t want self-pleasure while they’re still in the room. Derrick asks if she’s serious. Rachel and Veronica gleefully recall how they found Tonya moaning. Tonya: “You guys are evil, mean bitches.” Wow, tell us something we don’t know. Rachel interviews that it may look like they’re ganging up on Tonya, but it only appears that way because she makes herself out to be the outcast. Veronica continues to push the envelope, asking Tonya if she can record her next session. Tonya snips about how taking naked photos of her while she’s sleeping is violating her privacy. Damn, Veronica does that? Why can’t she riffle through closets for “lost” clothes like in the good old days? Tina laughs hard as Tonya leaves the room, going to the Good Guys boys’ room She interviews that she’ll do whatever it takes to shut those girls up, but she cares more about the next mission. That, and she has no comeback skills whatsoever. I gotta point the chick out to TWoP, so she can learn about “Klepronica,” “Butterface” and other choice insults.

Time passes. Tonya lies down, apparently asleep. Veronica chooses this time to lurk outside. Tonya tells her to go away. Veronica can only cackle, as Tonya bitches her out. Tonya tells her point blank to go, but Veronica can only squeal “Oh, my God!” several times while Rachel gets a kick out of it. Maybe Tonya’s talent is in patience. In Tonya’s shoes, I would’ve grabbed Veronica by the ankles and clubbed Rachel with her. I guess we can never repeat Katie’s bravura performance in Inferno. “I am two challenges away from winning,” Tonya interviews. “If they want to hate me, so be it. I don’t need their friendship, I don’t need them to like me, and I definitely don’t need to fit in.”

Sponsor clue! Abram reads the text message, noting that it’s the girls’ final Inferno. The instructions: meet at Grand Bay Marina, wearing swimsuits, team colors and sneakers. Shavonda interviews that if the Good Guys win the mission, they’ll be ahead of the Bad Asses for the first time.

Night lapses to day. The players arrive at the mission site, taking a look at a giant crane. Dave welcomes the kids to the last mission before the finale: Heart Rate Bungee. Each player will pair up with a teammate to perform a tandem bungee jump. The objective: get the heart rate below 100 beats per minute before dropping 125 feet through a trapdoor. Both players’ rates must dip below 100. The team that gets this done the quickest wins $10,000. Landon expositions that the individual with the lowest heart rate when the trapdoor is released will receive the Aztec Lifeshield. Dave adds that there are an uneven number of players on each side, so one person has to go twice. That person will be scored for the Lifeshield on the first try. Also, two members of the opposing team go up on the platform and heckle. This excites Abram. Why am I not surprised?

Dave concludes the meeting by saying that each team must nominate one woman for the Inferno. Here’s my problem: why the women? Why can’t they do two missions before an Inferno? Bunim-Murray did this in the last Inferno, where the women had one mission to sweat out. I would’ve spilt things evenly; do twelve missions and six Infernos. Have one mission and a guys’ Inferno, one mission and a girls’ Inferno, then a final mission and an open Inferno, where either gender can be selected. Not only would this provide more combinations, it would be a tip of the hat to the final Inferno between David and Katie. Can’t BMP do anything gender-neutral?

Good Guys Deliberation Meeting. I’m at home, wanting Rachel to go in so bad, I can taste it. Jamie wants Tonya, thinking she can beat her. Shavonda wants Tonya as well. Are you kidding me? Jamie interviews they’d feel more comfortable with Tonya. “We just feel more confident going up against Tonya,” Jamie adds, “who’s like mentally unstable, who cracks under pressure. We just feel that she’s a weaker player.” While I admire taking out a weak link this time (as opposed to Real World’s “Katie can only hurt Road Rules in the final mission” mindset from last year), why is it Tonya? She beat Julie in the Inferno! The toughest, meanest, most mentally damaged Good Guy girl gets beat down by Tonya, and you want to roll the dice on her? Landon wants Veronica (who isn’t all that, truth be told), but he wants the girls to feel confident Shavonda interviews that she almost hopes the Bad Asses put her in. She thinks Jamie would do better in the final mission, and she wouldn’t want to slow her team down. The team goes a cheer, and I fume that Rachel will be getting money that she doesn’t deserve. Again.

Bad Asses Deliberation Meeting. Veronica thinks sending Jamie would be a risk for her survival, then asks the boys what they think. CT notes that the guys want Jamie, and they don’t want to give the Good Guys an advantage in the final mission. In other words, Shavonda is the weakest link. Tina has a problem with this, and she doesn’t want to be overpowered by the men. “The reason why the guys all of a sudden grow a pair,” she interviews, “is because they have no risk in losing the final money. This is a women’s Inferno, and you have no voice whatsoever!” See, this is where a neutral Inferno would come in handy. Tina’s probably scared that she’d get picked, and she’d miss out on the money for the second Challenge in a row.

Rachel asks Tonya to speak up. Having learned nothing all season, Tonya wants to take Jamie out because Shavonda is the weakest link. “We’re not a team,” Veronica interviews. “There’s no team here. It’s very clear that they don’t support us in this.” Rachel rips Tonya for putting her muscular backside on the line. “I hope it’s you,” she snots, “because you’re the only girl that’s stupid enough to agree with the three men on the team.” First of all, you asked her, Butterface. Secondly, nobody’s going to pick you. The Good Guys are too stupid to realize that you’re all muscle and no hustle. “Tina, Veronica and Rachel are like vultures,” Tonya interviews. “The second they see me make a strategic move, they’re on my shit.” Tina gets mad, since the girls supported the guys on their choices. Abram thinks that’s crap, as he waves a finger at Tina and votes Jamie. Abram: “I fucking hope you go in.” Tina: “Lovely. You’re very vindictive. You’re a little bitch.” And I’m not supposed to like this girl? Abram goes a mild roar as we head for commercials.

Coming back, Abram is still angry, and CT has to talk him down. Abram figures that if the women are upset, they won’t compete in the end. CT asks why they would do that. Abram: “Because we’re fucking them over right now.” He interviews that he’s going to be a good guy and back down. The guys end up voting for Shavonda. Veronica interviews that the only reason the boys agreed was so the girls wouldn’t mess things up in the end.

Announcement time. Dave asks the Bad Asses for their pick. Tonya announces that Shavonda will be going in. Shavonda responds with a bizarre arm motion, like she’s pumping something. Dave asks the Good Guys for their choice. Shavonda declares that Tonya will be joining her. Dave makes an “Oooooo!” noise. Just one more episode with this dip. Mike interviews that this is a win/win situation for the team, since even if Shavonda loses, the Good Guys would lose their weak link, and the Bad Asses would keep theirs. The ladies place their figures in the Portable Mininferno. Dave notes that they can bail out of their date by winning the Aztec Lifeshield. Tonya snaps at the Good Guys, telling them that they made a bad move. “My team does not support me,” she interviews. “I will do this. Not only do I want this, I am going to win this Inferno.”

Flames! Darrell gets harnessed up. “Right now,” he interviews, “I feel like Tonya, what she does every day. Paranoid. Hyperventilating.” He adds that he’ll be “aiight” along with “Lando Commando.” Enough with that, Darrell. It’s just not catchy. Abram starts taunting Darrell and Landon even before they step up on the platform, but both boys have smiles on their faces. The crane lifts the platform up, while Abram and Tonya keep up the heckling. Dave informs the Good Guys that they’ve reached “cruising altitude,” and they get devices put on their fingers to take their heartrates. Abram and Tonya continue their assault. Darrell interviews that it’s actually helping him, since he’s working to shut them out. Heh...way to help the admitted acrophobe, guys.

Dave tells Landon and Darrell that they’ll get dropped when both are under 100 beats per minutes. Darrell starts at 139, Landon at 110. Abram: “I’m making you nervous right now! I’m making you my bitch!” Tonya taunts, but Darrell remains calm and Landon dips below 100. Rachel and Veronica laugh, either at Abram’s overzealousness, or Tonya in general. Darrell hits 99, while Landon goes to 95. Dave yanks a crank, and both guys are dropped after one minute and 46 seconds. Darrell interviews that he knew he’d be all right with “Landon Commando.” Oh, just kiss him already!

Second Pair: Abram & Rachel. Abram tries to be calm, slowing his breathing. Darrell interviews that he’s not heckling, because it would help the opposition. Abram hits 98, Rachel hits 95, and they clock out at 2:27.

Third Pair: Shavonda & Mike. Shavonda interviews that she’s not thinking of the mission and the Inferno together. Tina squeals on the platform, while CT asks Shavonda if she’s nervous about the Inferno. She gets a 96, while Mike gets a 99. They plummet at 1:51, and Mike tells Shavonda that she did a great job. CT interviews that his team has to make up for lost time.

Fourth Pair: Tina & Derrick. Mike engages in some mild taunting. Tina (97) and Derrick (96) plunge at 0:33.

Fifth Pair: Jamie & Landon. Landon starts off at 72. Soon, Jamie goes to 94, while Landon dips to 65. They plummet after two seconds. Jamie cheers and screams on the way down and back up.

Sixth Pair: Veronica & Abram. He asks her if she loves Mexico. She goes to 90, and he hits 60. I guess it’s not a big deal on the second attempt. How else could Abram register a 60 at any time? They clock out at 1:06.

On the ground, Shavonda asks Mike who’s up next. Mike tells her it’s CT & Tonya. Jamie asks Shavonda if she wants to go up with her. Suddenly, the girls get excited about their task. “I’m ready,” Tonya interviews. “I got this. I ain’t sweating it. These girls think they can heckle me? Come on, I’ve heard worse in my real life than I’ve heard here.” Anvil, party of one. Anvil, your table is waiting!

On the platform, Jamie and Shavonda start screaming. CT starts below 100 to start, while Tonya is at 117. The girls taunt Tonya about falling and going to the Inferno. Mike and Darrell look on from the ground, clearly enthused by the gusto of the ladies. Tonya puts her head on CT’s chest. More screaming. Tonya: “I’m hearing Jamie and Shavonda sound like Rachel, Veronica and Tina. I want to kick them off the platform, and I have no clue at this point how I’m going to get my heart rate down.”

Time elapsed: 7:30. Dave announces that CT is down to 54. The girls seemed awed by that, and Jamie actually says “gnarly.” On the other hand, Tonya is at 123. Landon yells at Tonya to earn her disqualification. Tonya tries to relax, but bumps herself up to 125. CT yawns, rising to 96. Dave notes that if he can’t drop the pair after fifteen minutes, they get the worst time plus a ten minute penalty. CT interviews that the girls have gotten inside Tonya’s head and freaked her out. Time elapsed: 13:00. Dave give the duo two more minutes. CT goes to 88, Tonya at 132. Now the editors want to hurt Tonya. We get a close-up of her, accompanied by a shot of Jamie screaming, then Veronica giving her grief. Tight shot of the Inferno. Shavonda screaming. Landon chanting Tonya’s name. A first-person perspective of a bungee drop. Anybody else feel the need to shower?

Back from commercials, Dave gives CT (89) and Tonya (122) one more minute. Landon: “Tonya, you are blowing the mission!” Tina happily interviews that the Lifeshield is on the line, and Tonya can’t get below 113 to save her life. Jamie and Shavonda get their taunt on as time expires. CT finishes at 96, Tonya at 126. And just for the hell of it, Dave sends both of them falling. Tonya holds onto CT, bitching about how she lost the mission. On the platform, Jamie and Shavonda share a high-five. Hey, they were mean, but it was within the rules. Tonya interviews that she couldn’t get her mind into place, and her team will probably root for her to go home.

Denouement. Dave announces that the Bad Asses’ average time was 4:08, while the Good Guys got 1:13 and the win. The Good Guys’ bank bulges to $80,000. Nicely done...most teams that start behind in Challenges end up staying behind. Dave awards Aztec Lifeshields to Landon (65 beats per minute) and CT (54). Should I be reading into how no woman won immunity during the entire season? And even though CT kept his rate under 100 most of the time, should he have won since he got disqualified alongside Tonya? Dave laughs like a tool, then announces that it will be Tonya and Shavonda going into the Inferno tonight. Tonya interviews that she wants to be the girl to win two Infernos, especially after beating Julie.

Night. Inferno! Flames! Both teams hoot and holler from the rafters. Dave welcomes everybody to the final Inferno, then brings out Tonya and Shavonda. This last Inferno is called Spinner. Each player will be strapped to a giant wheel, which will be sped up and slowed down at random. The objective: hold onto the team flag for as long as possible. The player that does this the longest wins, returns to her team, and stays on for the final mission. The loser goes home with no money. Dave adds that the game ends if a player throws up, passes out, throws the flag, or says she gives up. Landon interviews that Shavonda might not be the best contender, but they’ve been winning money with her. Shavonda: “I’m spinnin’ all fuckin’ night, bitches!” Please don’t mimic Mike, girl. She interviews that Spinner is more mundane that she expected. “I ain’t leeting go of the flag,” she adds. “I ain’t pukin’ and I ain’t quittin’. So we’ll be here awhile.” Only thing missing is a vulture in a wheelchair circling Shavonda.

Both players are strapped in, cameras on helmets making them look like residents of Whoville. Dave bangs his gong one last time. I just love the echo and ripple effect. The wheels start spinning. Shavonda offers to sing, and Tonya tells her to be quiet. Shavonda: “Maybe I should sing!” The Good Guys hoot, even though snapping at Tonya is no big deal. More spinning, as we approach the four minute mark. Landon jokes about how this is the longest Tonya has not talked. Shavonda adds that Tonya talked on the bungee, bringing up that failed effort. Once again, the Good Guys like the trash talking. Tonya: “Bring it on, bitch!” Veronica: “I would like to see Shavonda win tonight. I can’t take Tonya anymore. She’s so overconfident, and I think it would be really funny if Shavonda sent her home.” Man, which planet does she live on?

Time Elapsed: 8:21. Shavonda asks Tonya about the sports drink in her stomach. Tonya asks if Shavonda can get inside her head. Shavonda brags that she did that earlier. Now both sides are laughing and clapping. “Every time Shavonda says something rude to me,” Tonya interviews, “I’m on at least twenty minutes. She can talk all she wants. I’m still gonna kick her ass.”

Tine Elapsed: 11:43. Shavonda asks Dave if it’s normal for her feet to be loose. She interviews that every revolution is burning her back. More spinning. Cut to tight close-ups of Tonya and Shavonda’s eyes.

Time Elapsed: 15:00. Shavonda complains about her harness hurting. CT: “Oh, excuses!” Landon yells for her not to think about it. She interviews that she is getting rubbed raw, and she’s not to move like that. Soon, she gives up. Veronica: “What? No!” The Good Guys look stunned, as Shavonda orders the wheel stopped. The Bad Asses celebrate, as CT whoops it up, and even Veronica and Tina are clapping. Tonya: “You’re stuck with me!” Jamie looks on, looking very sad. Is it because she lost a friend, or because she’ll start getting compared to Coral as the last woman standing on her team? Veronica: “I am so shocked that Shavonda quit. It pains me that she quit, because now I know that I’ve got Tonya on my team.” She’s shocked? She helped throw Sarah under the bus five times, yet she came back. She helped throw Katie to the wolves twice, and she came back. How is Tonya any different?

Flame segue! Tonya waves her flag, and Dave congratulates her before returning her to the team. She interviews that she had a commitment to be here, as we see her do a crazy dance near the bars. She adds that she will bite her tongue and rest up for the final mission. Cut to a shot of dejected Bad Asses. Forced foreshadowing?

Farewell time. Just think...if Shavonda got hurt on the wheel, could you imagine Rachel enduring it? I’m just saying. Shavonda gets her hugs through the bars. She interviews that she let both teams down, since the Bad Asses don’t want Tonya. She adds that the Good Guys have an “awesome chance” to win with just four players, and guarantees that they’ll win, due to their smaller numbers. Did that help the Real World teams in Gauntlet and Inferno? She walks through the smoke, and the door closes behind her. At least we didn’t see her on the cell phone with her ex. That has to count for something, right?

The Bad Asses depart from the Inferno. “I don’t care if you don’t like me,” Tonya interviews. “I’ve earned a spot on this team, and I’m coming back. And if you don’t like it, tough shit.” Shot of the Bad Asses heading to the van, followed by one of Tonya on her own.

Next time: Dave welcomes the teams to Montezuma’s Revenge, the final mission. The teams dive off a ship, ride bicycles and run. Dave awards the $150,000 to the winning team. Can the Good Guys overcome lesser numbers? Will Tonya and Tina finally win a Challenge? Stay tuned.

4 comments:

blog111111 said...
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Ferris Wheel said...
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Silas Stingy said...

Hey, I just had a quick question. What do you think was up with the lack of bug and animal missions this time? Is it just to make up for the spate of disgusting missions they had in BOTS2? Or maybe TPTB realized that it's just disgusting?

Silas Stingy said...

BTW, I'm eggroll at TWoP