Living In Reality: Free Agents/Big Brother 16

The Challenge: Free Agents Finale

When we last left off, Zach and Deyvn were having some major boat troubles on the first leg of the final. After they fell into the water, Devyn was picked up by the rescue boat, but Zach was M.I.A. He hit his head on a rock when he fell, but fortunately, the rescue boat got to him as well. Johnny Bananas and Laurel finished the kayak portion first with a time of 40 minutes. Nany and Johnny R. came in at 44:53. Zach and Devyn finally finished at 58:21.

The second stage was a 10K run with a puzzle at the end. The puzzle was to place city-labeled logs in order of distance away from them. The pairs were Johnny/Laurel, Zach/Nany, Bananas/Devyn. As usual, Devyn was part of the team in last place. Bananas tried his best to encourage her, but she was moving at a snail’s pace. Fortunately, they still had a chance to make up time once they got to the puzzle. Johnny and Laurel used up all 30 min. on the puzzle but still won the leg with a time of 1:23:54. Zach and Nany got the leg done at an even hour-and-a-half. Bananas and Devyn were the only ones to finish the puzzle, which kept them relatively close at 1:34:47.

Third on the list of stages was a trail hike. The duos had to have a 15 min. staggered start and be harnessed due to the narrow, elevated path. The final set of pairs were Zach/Laurel, Bananas/Nany, and Johnny/Devyn. Laurel was frustrated to see Zach gassing out because of the thin air. Zach also started cramping (no LeBron cheapshots here!), which had him panicking in a bad way. Meanwhile, Bananas and Nany were catching up to them. Nany freaked out over a tarantula on the pathway, which compelled her to go even faster.

Nany and Bananas did overtake the top spot and complete the third stage at 2:19:14. This gave Nany a confidence boost as she sought to prove she was a strong competitor. Meanwhile, Laurel continued to yell at her partner as Zach kept struggling to move forward. Finally, they got to the end at 2:39:36. Devyn and Johnny crossed the end line of the leg at 2:52:42

The fourth leg was a “Volcano Bike”. 25 miles on a stationary bike is what everyone had to pedal. At this point, there were no more partnerships, just individual races. Bananas got his part done in a quick 61 minutes. Zach continued to fight off cramps. Nany had a meltdown as she couldn’t feel her feet. She got off her bike, but the clock was still running, giving Laurel a chance to make up time. Johnny ended his time at 1:23, Zach at 1:31, Laurel at 1:32, and Nany at 1:50. The finishers got to go to their tents for the overnight sleep. Devyn was the only one still lingering out there in the freezing cold. She was about ready to quit, but pushed through and finished at 2:43.

TJ got everyone up early for the fifth and final leg. Everyone had to climb to the snowy summit of the volcano and plant their flags to stop their time. TJ reminded the challengers that they had to finish to get any money. The castmates were dreading this last push to the end. Everyone looked lifeless as they started to saunter up the mountain. The two Johnnies were neck-and-neck as they made their way ahead of the pack. But Johnny R. pulled away and completed the trek up the volcano first in 2 hours, 4 minutes. He knew he didn’t necessarily clinch the grand prize however. His main competition Bananas crossed the finish line in 2:36.

The top two girls were locked in a tight race as well. Laurel and Nany finished almost at a dead heat with respective times of 3:10:38 and 3:10:42. It would come down to the previous four legs to figure out the girls’ winner. The remaining players fought to get all the way up the volcano. Zach was afraid he was going to fall completely out, but he did manage to get to the top at 3:37:00. The only suspense left besides the first place finishers was Devyn. She somehow summoned the last bit of strength she had in her body to cross the line at an even four-and-a-half hours.

Now it was time for TJ to deliver the cumulative times. Devyn and Zach finished third to win $15,000 each. The top spots for the guys and girls came down to the wire. For the guys Bananas won his record-breaking fifth Challenge, taking home $125,000.  Only nine minutes separated the girls, but it was Laurel who took home the $125K top prize, winning a Challenge for the first time ever. Nany and Johnny proudly accepted their $35,000 prizes. It certainly was the most brutal final ever (not a light statement considering most of the other recent finals have been extremely challenging). In the end, everyone was proud to finish the grueling race.

Free Agents Reunion

Jonny Moseley is back again as host for the reunion special. Of course, they recapped the epic final. All the finalists got their congrats, especially Devyn who unexpectedly finished, and the rookie Johnny who apparently had a rabbit’s foot up his keister during all those draws.

All that aside, it was time to get into the juicer parts of the season. Up first on the hot seat was Theresa, who partook in her fair share of backstabbing. There was still no love  lost between her and Laurel as they exchanged unpleasantries. Theresa respected Laurel as a competitor but wasn’t going to bow down to her like everyone else. Laurel believed that Theresa was shady. Devyn also called out Theresa on her shadiness. The most explosive part came when Theresa said she wanted to punch Laurel in the face. Unlike last Challenge reunion however, there was no throwdown, as Theresa backed off when Laurel stepped to her.

Next up was rehashing the big Jordan/Bananas rivalry. Jordan still had his fiery bravado on display and had no regrets about coming for the top dog’s throat. Bananas felt like Jordan didn’t need to do all this overcompensating to prove a point. Really, part of the reason Bananas won as much as he did was because he threw pride out the window.

Time to address the hookups in the house. Jordan and Laurel are still an item at the moment. The Cohutta/Nany/Johnny deal was still awkward to talk about. Nany got defensive about her role in the “love” triangle. She freaked out about her growing feelings for Cohutta, which is why she tried to sabotage things by sleeping with Johnny. Fortunately, her and Cohutta worked things out, and now in a relationship. Unfortunately, Jessica’s thing with Dustin (not at the reunion) fell through, as it was revealed he was involved with someone else back home.

The reunion then switched subjects to probably the biggest conflict in the house: Cara Maria and Laurel. They came into the house as best friends. As time went on though, Cara got increasingly upset at the digs Laurel would say towards her. There was an unseen blowup in the van that really screwed up their friendship. The good news is that they were able to talk things out and rekindle their relationship. On a lighter note, Cara also lamented not being able to catch a break in the actual game.

Towards the end, we got to see some bonus footage from the show. Of course it was the typical wild and crazy randomness you get when a bunch of liquored-up reality TV stars are cooped up in a house with nothing better to do. Also, there were some amusing fan questions sent in. Oh, and CT was also present for the reunion (didn’t have much to add however). A few more final comments, and that was a wrap for The Challenge: Free Agents! Assuming The Challenge returns in the future, it’ll be interesting to see what a new season has in store for us.


Big Brother 16

The second night of the premiere is here, and the second group of players are ready to make their way to the Big Brother house. Let’s take it look at what the other eight have to offer.

Brittany: 29 from Torrance, CA. Has three kids and just got out of a 10-year marriage, wants to do something for herself, is willing to flirt a little.

Caleb: 26 from Hopkinsville, KY. Self-described “metrosexual country boy”, former military, currently a hunting guide.

Christine: 23 from Tucson, AZ. Married, barista, another Big Brother fanatic, loves being naked.

Derrick: 30 from Providence, RI. Police sergeant, worked undercover narcotics, married with a young daughter.

Hayden: 21 from Long Beach, CA. Pedicab driver, long beach, not a surfer despite the long-haired surfer look, straight-A student.

Jocasta: 33 from Lovejoy, GA. Minister, two sons, alludes to previous promiscuity in her life.

Victoria: 22 from Weston, FL. Born in Israel, orthodox, works in photography, loves dressing up, always gets what she wants.

Zach: 23 from Palm Beach, FL. University of Florida grad, unemployed, habitual liar, resident “I’m not here to make friends” person in the house.

Julie reminds us all again that this will be the “most twisted summer ever”. She tells the second group about the other eight roommates already in the house. She also informs them about the new HOH rules.

Jocasta, Caleb, Christy and Hayden enter the Big Brother house first, followed a little later by Victoria, Zach, Derrick and Brittany (side note: splitting each group doesn’t appear to add anything, but whatever). It’s a bit chaotic at first a everyone tries to keep track of one another.

Caleb takes a liking to Amber not long after setting foot inside. Devin has his main alliance but also wants to play nice with the second group of housemates. Zach doesn’t care about getting to know anyone. Nicole is worried about her alliances crumbling. Frankie and Victoria get along well with their love of the color pink. Paola sizes up Caleb as a potential threat in the house.

Donny makes goofy cricket noises for fun, but has a rhyme and reason for doing so. He wants people to view him as the funny guy and not as a potentially dangerous player. Derrick and Brittany share a common bond of being parents. Derrick also makes a strategic move in the game, saying to the group that he was a parks and recreation coordinator instead of a sergeant. This is meant to be a roundabout way of gauging who’s lying in the house.

The first bit of friction comes when Zach pokes fun at Frankie about his rich upbringing and his over-the-top personality. Not the greatest move considering Frankie is a HOH, but as previously stated, Zach isn’t here to make friends.

Finally, it’s time to determine the second HOH. This game is called Over the Coals. It’s similar to the previous HOH game except the players are straddling and hanging onto a rotating beam like they’re on a BBQ spit. After awhile, BBQ sauce was dropped down to make the beams harder to handle. A couple of the guys dropped off intentionally to keep the targets off their backs. Caleb, on the other hand, had no intention of throwing any games. He hung on the longest (and showboated during the process) winning the second HOH prize. Everyone took note of him as someone to watch out for.

Afterwards Julie dropped another shocking twist on the game. Each HOH will now nominate two houseguests each for eviction. The two pairs will then compete in The Battle of the Block. In this case, Frankie’s nominations will battle Caleb’s nominations. The other big catch is that the winners will dethrone the HOH who sent them in. Which means, an HOH can find themselves kicked back into the regular pool and be in jeopardy of being sent home.

Finally, the first Team America voting winner was revealed to be Joey. She got a message saying she would take part in secret missions with two other people. The team would win $5,000 for each mission accomplished. It’s also up to them whether they want to reveal the alliance or not.


Written by T. Green

is still waiting for that one special night when the Lions finally win the Super Bowl.

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